By and large, people still use signatures in emails, as in the little blurb of text at the tail of every message sent. When it comes to signatures, it’s all too easy to have them grow too large. Originally it was just your name and email address, which was 1 or 2 lines depending on how you had it set up. Over time it can grow to 5 lines or greater from all the stuff you put in there.

Instead of throwing in a bunch of stuff in your sig, you can significantly shorten it just by linking to a profile site instead.

This is my current signature:

-- Rich Menga | (email address here) | www.about.me/menga

That’s it. The link goes to a profile site about.me where I have my blog and Facebook community page listed. My profile page is purposely simple, but has the option of adding in a ‘bio’ in a text box, and the ability to add in as many links as I want. When someone wants more info on me from emails I send, the about.me page fits the bill here.

About.me is just one of several places where you can have a profile. Here are some others:

Yahoo!

Every Y! profile has the profile address http://pulse.yahoo.com/YAHOO-ID-HERE. It is either public or hidden depending on how you have it configured. If you want to use it in an email signature, unhide the profile (if hidden), fill out the info you want people to know and go from there.

Google

The Goog has a separate web site dedicated solely to creating public profiles at profiles.google.com.

Windows Live

You may want to use one of these if you have a Hotmail address and can learn more about it here. Be warned however that the web addresses assigned to Windows Live profiles are usually ridiculously long, and may not be the best option for an email signature profile link.

Facebook profile or community page

Every Facebook profile is link-able. Simply login to Facebook and copy the link for ‘Profile’ at top of the site.

If you’d rather not do that but still want people to connect to you via Facebook, the next best option is to create a public community page which will have a separate address and profile. Go to this address and hit the "Create a Page" link. You can create as many as you wish.

Remember that if you like, you can disable things like wall posting and so on to make it truly profile-like and nothing more.

Which is the easiest?

About.me is the easiest of the lot, no question. It also gives you added goodies like built-in hit tracking so you can see how many people have visited your profile in a given week/month/etc. About.me was definitely done right the first time.