Using custom signatures

The typical way to create signatures in the Apple Mail is fairly straightforward. Click the Mail menu, choose Preferences, click Signatures and add one. But standard signatures have a few disadvantages.

First, designs are limited to web-safe fonts, size and color. You cannot create tables or elements next to one another (such as a logo on the left with two lines of contact info on the right). Another problem is that logos and images are sent as attachments. This makes every message larger. Recipients may not appreciate that every email they receive appears to have an attachment and they might miss real attachments. Some email apps don’t show the images properly; a few even truncate everything after the image.

The solution to these challenges: HTML-based signatures. Design a signature like a web page, with tables, links and graphics. Images can be served from your web host. When the recipient opens the email it connects to your site and grabs the images automatically. This gets around design limitations and it makes signatures dynamic. When you change the files on the web host all your signatures change immediately. Apple Mail doesn’t directly support HTML signatures but with a little help, it can be done.

Steps for using custom signatures

  1. First, create a custom signature using tools you probably already have on your Mac.
  2. Next, implement the signature on your computer.
  3. Have more computers? Transfer signatures to other Macs.
  4. You can also use your custom signature on iPhone or iPad.

Note: These instructions are for modern versions of the Mail app. If you have OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion or earlier, upgrade your OS X to the latest version first.

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