The Best E-Signature Tools for Small Business in 2021

By Concord Editorial   Mar 11, 2021

At the start of 2020, no one could foresee the extent and role remote tools would play to keep their team and small business on track. Now in 2021, electronic signature tools are not an after-thought, but a real need for any size business. 


Though for small businesses, it’s likely you lack the designated resources that are available at enterprise organizations in scouting all the available options. 


Maybe you’ve cobbled together a “workable” solution. But the shift from in-office work to a hybrid model is set to be the norm. A year ago, 85% of small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) worked in-office, and that number dropped to 26% mid-2020. Electronic signing for remote work is a must-have.


It can be time consuming—and overwhelming—to sort out all the details when you’re considering a new tool that one or more of your departments needs to adopt, remotely. Now more than ever, we believe every business deserves an easier time getting to a signed contract. 


Most Requested E Signature Features for Small Business

We’ve spent years developing our native e signature tool, for ease-of-use and access, and we’ve learned over these years that SMBs desire the following electronic signature basics: 


  • Secure e signatures that are legally valid and compliant
  • Generous e signature limits 
  • Easy access for all signers
  • Flexibility in user amounts and limits
  • (Price) 


Consider These Features for Remote Work

However, when you factor in remote work collaboration, the following features are no longer a nice-to-have, but a central process that moves business forward: 

  • Signature tracking and notifications
  • Unlimited e signatures  
  • Unlimited viewers – to allow any team member to track a contract and e signatures
  • E signature workflows – to set-up how and when you want each party to sign


As businesses embrace a hybrid work model, automating every area of your contract process is going to be essential for scaling,andto stay competitive. 


Concord is a best-in-class contract management lifecycle (CLM) platform, to automate every stage of contract management. But a good step toward automating the contract process is to start with the best e signature tool for your business. Here are the top e signature remote work tools for small businesses in 2021:

  • DocuSign
  • HelloSign
  • PandaDoc
  • AdobeSign
  • Concord


Is Every Option Legal and Secure? 


Each one provides secure and legally binding valid e signatures. But if you need more information on the difference between an electronic signature vs. digital signature, and what to consider for legal compliance, you can read more here: What We Learned About Electronic Signature to Save you Money—And Frustration


DocuSign  Free Trial / $10 to $60 per user 


Why It Made the List:  

DocuSign is a leading e signature solution. It’s ubiquitous in the electronic signature space and offers an easy-to-use interface to get a signature, and then track its progress from sending to signing. You can drag-and-drop any type of document, easily insert signature lines, and send a signature request through email, then track the progress with notifications.  


For small businesses working remotely, the ease of the e signature tool and the basic contract management features are a first step in remote contract collaboration.


What it Does Best: 

DocuSign has its own unique cloud storage so you can securely organize signed documents there. DocuSign also integrates with over 350 apps to integrate it with your existing collaboration ecosystem. Practically speaking, DocuSign provides name recognition to the e signature request. 


Pricing for Small Business: 

DocuSign is structured as a monthly or annual payment. 


Pricing starts at $10 for individual accounts, but you can expect to budget at least $40 per user, for 5 or more users to send more than 100 envelopes a year, 


Best for These Business Types:  

DocuSign doesn’t offer unlimited signatures in their tiered packages. They offer 100 send envelopes annually per user. For sales, procurement, or legal, the volume of e signature needs may be higher. It’s best for: 

  • Real Estate (DocuSign offers tailored packages)
  • Skilled-labor small business 
  • Retail
  • HR
  • Finance sectors


Gain Unlimited Legally Binding E Signatures with Concord

Even at the free plan, Concord offers free unlimited signatures. There are no conditions to unlimited signatures for any plan, so you never have to track—or hit—an unruly limit on signatures, for any person signing. 



HelloSign  Free trial / $15 to $40 per user


Why It Made the List:  

For small business teams working remotely, having unlimited signatures is a stress-reliever. HelloSign provides unlimited signatures beginning at the individual plan, and offers an easy-to-use template creation option, so you can create a small number of templates more commonly used, like an NDA or SA.  It also integrates with your Google. 


What it Does Best: 

HelloSign puts no conditions on its unlimited e signature feature. HelloSign’s unlimited e signature feature, coupled with its simple e signature creation and tracking features, makes it a compelling option for a remote work team who simply needs nimble functionality without extra features. DrobBox owns HelloSign, and has made it easy to integrate with DropBox (as well as Google Drive) to download and store signed documents. 


Pricing for Small Business: 

HelloSign offers monthly or annual options, and the price point is competitive for SMBs, at $24 per user for Enterprise features. 


Best for These Business Types: 

For an office with more than 5 employees, you may work with sales for a plan that meets your needs. Templates are not as robust as other options, which is a consideration for legal, procurement, or big manufacturing. Best for:

  • Sales
  • HR
  • Retail
  • Start-Ups
  • Small Manufacturing


Create An Unlimited Number of Templates with Concord

The Concord Contract Management Platform allows you flexibility in  generating and customizing any kind of template, and to also create multiple versions, with different variables. 


PandaDoc  Free / $19 to $49 per user


Why It Made the List: 

PandaDoc is a growing leader in the  e signature space as a contract management option. It supports e signature creation, tracking, and analytics. It also integrates easily with other tools you use, like Google and Salesforce. Likewise, it offers a comprehensive set of features for template creation, and a content library.


What it Does Best: 

The contract management platform particularly focuses on sales. It also provides a free option for their platform, with no trial or conditions. Like Concord, PandaDoc is a full end-to-end contract management solution, so that you can create and send an unlimited number of signatures, but also move your business to contract automation for the long-term. 


Pricing for Small Business:

The best pricing for SMBs starts with the $19 Essentials Plan, then jumps to $49 for the Business Plan. The free plan can work if your business has a sole contract owner, such as a contract manager, or for a start-up.


Best for These Business Types: 

PandaDoc is a top consideration for obtaining both unlimited e signatures and a contract management system for any small business wanting flexibility and also wanting to scale. 

  • Legal
  • Sales
  • Real Estate
  • Procurement
  • Healthcare


Enjoy More Features with Concord–at a Lower Price in 2021

Capterra’s 2021 Report shows that Concord provides more features (for a lower price in 2021) to meet your needs, for every stage of contract management—for any organization. 


Adobe Sign No Free Plan / $9.99 to $27.99 per user


Why It Made the List: 

If you’re needing a go-to e signature plan for your small business, the company that brought the PDF, keeps it simple and quick to get a signature. You can create signatures on PDFs, and documents, track and get notifications, and all plans integrate with Google Drive, Microsoft 365, Box, and Dropbox. 


What it Does Best: 

Adobe Sign is a simple e signature tool for remote work, to add a signature block to a PDF, or on any document, new and old. Because of its name recognition, and the market’s general desire for a PDF e signature, it may foster a sense of easier engagement for your team. 


Pricing for Small Business 

Adobe Sign doesn’t offer unlimited plans and has a limit of 150 transactions per user annually. But the $27 price point per user is geared to the most comprehensive amount of features they offer. 


Best for These Business Types: 

  • HR
  • Small-size Sales
  • Retail
  • Small Manufacturing
  • Customer-facing Healthcare 



Concord Provides Unlimited Signatures at Every Plan—And Unlimited Viewers

Not only can you gain unlimited secure and legally binding electronic signatures starting at the free plan, but you can also invite an unlimited number of viewers, to take the difficulty out of remote collaboration with complete transparency. 



Concord Free Plan & $17 to $34 per user


Concord is an end-to-end contract management software platform designed to look like Gmail for ease of use. It offers unlimited  e signatures, unlimited contracts, flexible user plans, integrates with SalesForce, Google Drive, and DropbBox, and provides secure cloud-based document storage. It has been ranked as a best-in-class contract management system. 


What It Does Best: 

The platform takes the pressure off small business remote collaboration: 

  • Unlimited e signatures
  • Unlimited contracts
  • Unlimited Free viewers and guests
  • Easy integration with Salesforce, Google Drive, and DropBox
  • Secure document storage in its platform forever

 Concord focuses on user-centric needs, so you can add or re-assign users, create approval flows, and have an unlimited number of viewers, making collaboration more nimble and flexible.


Pricing for Small Business

Concord offers a free trial as well as free plan, with unlimited free e signatures and unlimited contracts.


Concord’s tiered pricing starts at $17 per user, and offers a more comprehensive set of features for every leg of contract management, from unlimited template creations, to a clause library, redlining and e signatures, so you can seamlessly work remotely. But it doesn’t limit Bulk Uploads nor does it limit e signatures, or charge for organizing workflows by team or department. 


Ease of Use for Small Business Needs

If you’re simply trying to create a digital signature on a PDF, and sign and send it, the software is designed for both simple legally binding electronic signatures as well as more compliance-driven signatures, .to meet an array of industry-specific needs. But it’s priced at the lower end for a larger number of features. Concord for SMBs:   

  • Legal
  • Sales
  • Procurement
  • Healthcare and Pharma
  • HR 
  • Logistics
  • Small Manufacturing 


What’s the Best Way to Decide? 


Take a moment to sign up for the free trials available for each option. For remote work to be successful, it requires clear collaboration and transparency in processes. Consider that an e signature solution might be right for the short term, but long-term, a contract management platform offers not only digital contract signing, but every facet you need for transparency in your contract management process.   

Get started with Concord today


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