What fonts are best for email signatures?

Every element of a signature block plays an important role. Contact details, user’s photo, images, hyperlinks, social media icons or font need to go together to make the signature look professional. One of the basic elements that can significantly impact the signature’s readability and visual perception is an improper font. That is why, in this article, I will discuss the best fonts for email signatures.

Best fonts for email signatures

To choose the best font for email signatures, you need to look for one of the safe fonts. By “safe fonts”, I mean fonts that are available on most devices. No matter if this is PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad or Android – you can be pretty sure that the font you use in your signature is also installed on the recipients’ side. This will guarantee that the signature will look just the way you see it on your screen.

Safe fonts are also easy to read. There are no unnecessary decorations that would negatively impact the readability of the signature’s text. Having this in mind, here is a list of the best fonts for email signatures:

  • Arial
  • Verdana
  • Helvetica
  • Georgia
  • Tahoma
  • Courier
  • Times New Roman
  • Trebuchet
  • Palatino
  • Lucida

With the fonts mentioned above, you can create nice and neat email signatures. Just like the one in the example below. The font family used in this template is Arial, size 10pt. The signature looks very elegant and allows the recipient to easily find and read all necessary contact details.

Email signature based on Arial font..

What fonts you should avoid and why

Although they are welcome on some creative projects, you should avoid using custom or decorative fonts in email signatures. On the Internet, you can find many websites offering tons of fancy fonts that you can download and install on your devices. And even if you have such an option, you should not consider them as an added value to your email signatures’ design.

Here are some points to think about when considering a decorative font for your email signature:

  • Bad for brand reputation – You should be aware of the fact that your email signature is actually your online business card. The way you design it can tell quite a lot about your professionalism. Decorative fonts that clutter your signature or make it impossible to read should be out of the question.
  • A different look on the recipients’ side – It is most probable that the recipients of your email do not have your fancy font installed on their device. As a result, the font you have chosen cannot be displayed properly. When the fancy font is not available on the recipient’s side, it will fall back to one of the standard fonts specified in the signature’s code or to a default one used by the recipient.
  • Hard to read – most decorative fonts make the signature’s text highly unreadable. The recipient of your email should be able to easily read and find all necessary information they look for in your email signature. But if the font makes it impossible to quickly scan the signature for the phone number or postal address this can be really frustrating.

The example below shows how NOT to use fonts in email signatures. The font makes it really hard for the recipient to decode all contact details.

Email signature based on a decorative font.

Email signature inspirations

If you need some inspiring examples of a neat and safe email signature, visit Email Signature Generator or this Signature Templates online library. Searching through the gallery of templates may inspire you to create your own signature that will look elegant and attractive in corporate email correspondence. All signatures listed in these resources are based on the most popular safe fonts – Arial and Verdana.

Feel free to download any of the email signature templates you find interesting and use it as your company signature. They are totally free!

Suggested reading:
Tools for central email signatures management
How to standardize signatures in your business emails – a step-by-step guide
How to make images display correctly in email signatures (not as attachments)

4 thoughts on “What fonts are best for email signatures?

  1. veronica segura

    I would suggest you to use Microsoft Sans Serif font. This font is simple in appearance, visibility is clear and looks standard. This looks far better than Arial and Helvetica and also available on Windows OS by default, so your signature font won’t convert into some other font on other PCs where you send emails. However, try using this font in your email signature with following formatting:

    Your name (Bold, with size 10)
    Designation, department, phone, email, address etc. (Simple, with size 8)

    Reply
    1. Grimm

      a) To call Microsoft Sans Serif better than Helvetica is just ignorant. It’s called “good taste”, look it up.

      b) Great idea, use a font that isn’t supported by the Apple environment by default. It’s not like a giant portion of the marked uses Macbooks, iPhones and iPads. Many of them potential clients. And Usually those are the ones with deeper pockets.

      Reply
  2. Grim

    And as for the article:
    Helvetica is not a web safe font! Please stop giving out bad information. It’s only preinstalled on Macs, most of the market doesn’t have it on their computers. And it’s a very expensive font.

    Reply
    1. Kamil Glaser

      Hello Grim,
      Thanks for chiming in! Sorry for being unclear. Helvetica appeared on the list because of its high aesthetic value and broad web support. Nonetheless, it’s always a good practice to set up fallback fonts to make sure the email signature design looks well on every device. The Roboto font is considered a good Helvetica substitute, and “sans-serif” as the last fallback option takes care of every scenario possible.

      Reply

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