Outlook is the world’s fifth most popular email client according to Statista. So, if you are an Outlook user, you’re in good company! But are you making the most of Outlook’s features? One of the most critical tools to add to your email is your Outlook signature. Creating an email signature for Outlook is easy (see our step-by-step Outlook signature guide here). But make sure to avoid these deadly Outlook signature mistakes at all costs:
- Do not send an email without a proper email signature
- Do not ignore your email provider’s limitations
- Do not misuse images
- Do not forget to add calls-to-action
- Do not forget to add an image
- Do not go crazy with colors
- Do not make typos
Let’s dive deeper into these mistakes so you understand how and why to avoid them.
1. Not having an email signature
Not using an email signature is probably the biggest mistake you can make. If you don’t have one, you can easily set it up. Here is our step-by-step guide on creating an Outlook signature, or, take the shortcut and set one up in minutes with an email signature generator.
Why is it such a huge mistake to not have a signature? An email signature is a powerful yet underestimated email marketing tool! A professional email signature boosts sales conversions, social media reach, email engagement and email reply rates. So you will miss huge opportunities if you don’t have one!
Once you create your Outlook signature, here are the other mistakes to avoid…
2. Don’t ignore Outlook’s limitations
Outlook is an email client, just like Gmail and Mac Mail are email clients. But, not all email clients are created equal. There are two types of email clients: webmail and software. Outlook is a software that is installed on your computer. Whereas Gmail is a webmail that you access from a web browser or a mobile app. Outlook also has a webmail version, Outlook.com.
Why does this matter? It’s important to understand that, while each of these email clients have similar features, they are each built differently with unique capabilities and limitations. So, what works for one email client might not work for another. As an Outlook user, you must understand its limitations. For example, don’t add GIFs to your Outlook signature because Microsoft’s image processor doesn’t support them.
Before setting out to design your new signature in Outlook, take a look at some outstanding Outlook signature examples for inspiration!
3. . Don’t forget to add an image
Research shows that visual content or media drives higher engagement. And it’s no different when it comes to email signatures. WiseStamp’s data shows that email signatures with an image get up to 32% more clicks than those without.
So do not make the mistake of omitting an image! Choose a photo that best represents your business, whether it’s a logo image, headshot or product shot.
And here is a big “no no:” Do not turn your entire signature into an image file!! is a big NO NO. Adding an image to your Outlook signature is much different than turning your entire signature into an image file. Don’t confuse the two as it will make your signature impossible to click and some email providers – including Outlook – will actually block the image from displaying. You don’t want that to happen.
4. Don’t overlook the image specifications
You definitely want to add an image to your Outlook signature, but you need to be aware of the limitations. Here are the specifications to follow:
- Format: Use JPEG only (not PNG)
- Size: up to 250 KB
- Dimensions: 90X90 for square images, 5:1 ration on banners
As long as your image meets these specifications, it will look great in Outlook.
5. Don’t neglect calls-to-action
Adding call-to-action buttons to your signature is a sure-fire way to get your recipients to take a specific action. Some users add multiple calls-to-action, and that’s okay but don’t add too many of them. Our data shows that having one clear main call to action with two secondary calls to action gets the most clicks.
One more lazy mistake:
6. Don’t forget to update your email signature
Keeping things updated will dramatically improve engagement. For example, more people will click on your “20% Sale through July 30” banner if its current and hasn’t taken place weeks ago. Of course, keep your contact information – email, phone, etc – current as well as your new title or position (congrats!).
7 – Don’t choose the wrong font
Remember how we said not all email clients are created equal? Well, the same goes for fonts. Some fonts are web-safe and some are not. A “web-safe” font will display normally across all types of devices and operating systems (Mac, Windows, iOS, Droid); whereas fonts that are not web-safe might display as gibberish or weird symbols depending on the device. So, don’t make the mistake of choosing a font that is not web-safe. We recommend using Georgia, Courier, or Verdana.
That’s it for common email mistakes, so now it’s time to take a good, hard look at your email signature. No need to beat yourself up on past mistakes; simply correct them. And even if your email signature is already looking good, there is always room for improvement. Now get going!
Asaf Rothem | Head of Business Development | WiseStamp
Asaf has been working in MarTech startups for the past 8 years. He writes about marketing personalization technologies, conversion optimization, and other cool stuff.