How to create a transparent signature online

There are multiple ways to digitally sign your documents.

You can use a service like PandaDoc to ensure that your digital signatures are secure and legally binding, but you might also choose to sign by uploading an image of your signature to an online document.

However you choose to do it, you may prefer to use an image of your handwritten signature rather than simply typing your name. In that case, you’ll want to create a signature image with a transparent background for maximum flexibility.

This article will show you how to create a transparent signature using online tools.

What is a transparent signature?

A transparent signature doesn’t mean that the signature itself is invisible. If you’re using an image of your handwriting to prove that you signed a document, it needs to be visible to all parties.

However, if you’ve ever uploaded a scanned signature or used a drawing tool and a stylus to create your signature online, you’ll understand the problem. Signature images created using these methods are typically saved in a JPG format and accompanied by a white background.

This happens because a JPG image file doesn’t allow transparent backgrounds. Even if you used a professional editing program like Photoshop or Gimp to remove the white background from your image, if you saved it as a JPG when you were done, the file type would automatically fill that transparent space with white.

Transparent signatures are typically created and saved using the PNG file format. While PNG images default to a white background color, you can remove it to create a transparent image and add your signature on top of that empty space.

The result: A signature image with a transparent background that you can use to sign any document!

Does a transparent background matter?

As a practical application, a signature with a transparent background is a helpful addition to your digital signing repertoire.

Having an electronic copy of your signature on-hand allows you to create a signature stamp on many common signing platforms. You upload your signature to the platform, then use that signature to sign PDF documents (contracts, proposals, etc.) that are sent to you inside that system.

If you’re using a JPG file, you can replicate this effect as long as the white background attached to your signature image matches the color of the paper. When this happens, the white background in your signature block will blend seamlessly with the page.

Unfortunately, becomes an issue when your white background isn’t perfectly white (a common problem with scanned documents), if you need to sign with limited space, or if the background color of the contract is a different color than that of your signature file.

In all of these cases, using a JPG to sign might look unprofessional, but it’s important to note that using your signature image could still be considered legally binding if added to the page, regardless of how it looks to others.

Having a signature with a transparent background provides added flexibility and transparency to your signing process.

Read on to discover how you can create background-transparent signatures in just a few clicks.

How to create a transparent signature

In the earlier days of the internet, you’d need semi-professional editing software to create a digital signature. Fortunately, several online solutions now exist to streamline this process.

If you’re looking to create a signature with a transparent background, forget about using digital brushes and magic wand tools for background removal.

Simply use one of the solutions below and you’ll have a transparent signature ready to sign documents in seconds.

CreateMySignature

With CreateMySignature (brought to you by PandaDoc), you don’t need to download or sign up for anything.

  1. Head to CreateMySignature.com
  2. Select “Draw signature.” This will allow you to create a downloadable image for use when signing PDF files and digital documents inside major software tools like Google Docs and Microsoft Word.
  3. Draw your signature using your mouse or trackpad. For even greater control, you could use your finger or stylus by accessing the website via a mobile device (iPhone, iPad, or Android) and taking advantage of the device touchscreen.
  4. Click on “Save.”
  5. Click “Download” to download your new signature.

The image that downloads to your device will be a PNG signature image with no background.

You don’t need to do anything to make your new e-signature transparent; all the hard work is already done.

To take your new signature for a test drive, open a document in Microsoft Word or Google Docs, and add your new signature to the file. Change the background color. Notice that the background under your written signature changes with it.

You can also resize or reshape your signature image however you see fit, which is useful for signing in small spaces.

Google Draw

Though this process isn’t as streamlined as the CreateMySignature process (above), it’s still an easy way to create a signature with a transparent image background.

  1. Head to the > Google Draw website, or access Google Draw from your Google Drive by clicking the New Document button, followed by More > Google Drawings.
  2. In the Google Draw interface, click or tap on the carrot beside the Line Tool and select “Scribble” from the dropdown menu.
  3. Draw your signature using a mouse, stylus, or trackpad. You can also use a touchscreen device by access the website via a smartphone or tablet.
  4. When finished, click File > Download > PNG Image (.png). This step is critical. If you select other formats, your new signature may have a white background!

Once you’ve downloaded your signature, you’re all set.

As with the results from CreateMySignature, you can test your new e-signature by adding it to a document and changing the background color.

How can I use my transparent signature to sign online documents?

There are a few ways that you can use your new signature.

The simplest way is to upload your signature to any document that you want to sign and reposition it so that it fits on the signature line.

However, while documents signed in this way can be considered legally binding, we recommend using a dedicated signing platform when adding your signature to high-value contracts and legal documents.

These platforms produce digital signatures, which make contracts much easier to enforce and work to eliminate the possibility of fraud or tampering after the contract is complete.

While these services may cost, you can find free options to securely sign your documents. PandaDoc offers a Free eSign plan specifically for users who want to securely sign their documents.

When using a service like PandaDoc, you’ll be able to upload your new e-signature to the signing platform and use it for all your signed documents. No more dragging and dropping. Upload it once and you’ll be able to access your signature every time you need it.

Create secure online signatures and contracts with PandaDoc

Looking to go beyond a simple online signature image? PandaDoc has all the tools you need to create incredible contracts, proposals, and more.

Our secure signing environment helps to ensure that every document signed through our platform is legally binding, and our design tools make it easy for businesses to build and edit critical sales documents on the fly.

Sign up for a free 14-day trial and discover how PandaDoc can revolutionize your digital signing process.