E-Signature Market Overview
The global electronic signature (e-signature) market is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 34.7% during the forecast period and reach $9,073.1 million by 2023. Increasing security concerns among firms, rising government focus toward going paperless, expanding e-commerce sector, and growing online transaction rate are expected to drive the demand for e-signature solutions across the world. An e-signature is a digital or electronic form of signature that makes documentation process swift as well as secure.
On the basis of type, the e-signature market has been categorized into signature pad at point of sale (POS), public key infrastructure (PKI), voice signature, clickwrap, username and pin, and others. Among these, PKI dominated the market in 2016, with around 29.0% revenue share.
Based on deployment mode, cloud-based and on-premises solutions are the two categories in the e-signature market. Between the two, the cloud-based category led the market in 2016. Further, among all the use-cases of e-signature, including mediated, unmediated, third party, and internal, the unmediated category accounted for the highest revenue, of 43.8%, in the e-signature industry in 2016.
E-Signature Market Dynamics
The key growth drivers for the e-signature market include surging demand for workflow efficiency, supply chain enhancement, security in the corporate sector; rising government support to promote the use of e-signatures; and increasing rate of online documentation.
Corporate authorities across the world are increasingly demanding e-signatures to reduce instances of fraudulence and create, process, and authenticate documents with complex encryption in a short time frame. Moreover, with the rapid modernization of enterprises, the need for authenticating documents has increased considerably in the past few years. Institutions and organizations have been digitizing their documentation process due to the numerous benefits offered by the technology. Encouraged by these, companies are fast adopting e-signature solutions for various internal and external purposes.
One of the identity and access management (IAM) solutions with multiple benefits, e-signatures help decrease human errors in important and sensitive financial transactions. Documents that are signed electronically ensure that the agreed-upon procedures are followed by both authorized parties. Besides ensuring security, e-signatures quicken the payment process by automating features that have the potential of affecting cash management.
Further, e-signatures are being rapidly deployed in the supply chain management in the corporate sector, as these help reduce the operational cost and improve the working capital management, thereby making the supply chain of the business more efficient.
In addition, the growing penetration of cloud computing has empowered consumers and companies to make dealings online, a process that mandates the authorization of both the stakeholders. The increase in online financial transactions is, thus, resulting in the rising rate of documentation over the web. Developed countries are witnessing a rapid growth in online banking, owing to advanced internet infrastructure. This has furthered propelled the growth of the e-signature market across the globe.
Although laws and policies regarding the electronic form of signature exist, their inconsistency across countries is somewhat restraining the progress of the e-signature market. For instance, the Peruvian laws state that in order to be valid, an e-signature must have a digital certificate. Further, digital certificates provided by other countries must meet the Peruvian standards for their validation. Similarly, in the U.A.E, an official consent from the government is mandatory for electronic transactions. Further, e-signature licenses are a little costly; however, their cost is expected to come down with the increase in the user base.
The rapid adoption of e-signatures based on the software as a service (SaaS) delivery model, along with positive attitude toward the technology, in Australia is the major opportunity for the growth of the e-signature market.
Globally, Australia is among the most significant countries for the growth of the e-signature market. Business owners in Australia are quite open toward the adoption of the e-signature technology, a factor that primarily drives the market in the country. In addition, the Australian law validates the use of e-signatures for executing agreements.
In addition, the growing deployment of e-signatures based on the SaaS delivery model is a significant factor behind their surging popularity. SaaS deployments are majorly preferred for low-value and less-complex transactions and also ease the implementation of e-signature solutions. The popularity of e-signatures based on SaaS is also rising in human resources, legal, and sales departments of companies that require the consent of external parties regularly.
E-Signature Market Competitive Landscape
The intensity of competition in the e-signature market is moderate. The majority of prominent vendors are carrying out research and development to launch products with improved security features. Further, they are focusing on partnerships to target a wider consumer base across the world. For example, in 2016, DocuSign Inc. and IBM announced a strategic partnership to improve digital trust across firms and industries of various sizes by integrating digital transaction management (DTM) functionality and e-signature in software and services offered by IBM.
In another market development, AssureSign launched a new solution in 2017 that allows users to forward documents for e-signatures through a short message service (SMS), helping major enterprises and small companies simplify their process of securing communication. A major reason behind the development of this feature was the high demand from legal, insurance, and telecommunication firms.
Besides, in October 2016, AssureSign announced plans to open a data center in Canada to serve the local clientele. The facility offers electronic signature SaaS solutions and also has the capability to initiate, sign, and store client data.
Some of the major players operating in the global e-signature market are Docusign Inc., Adobe Systems Inc., SIGNiX Inc., RPost, Citrix Systems Inc., SSL Europa France SAS, Sertifi Inc., AssureSign LLC, and Gemalto NV.