All About Official Seals

custom stamps embossed seal

At CustomStamps.com we offer a wide selection of stamps and embossers for all types of professional and official seals. To help you choose the right product for your professional or personal use, we’ve put together this go-to guide with everything you need to know about official seals:

All About Official Seals
What is an official seal? Does a company have to have an official seal?
What is the purpose of a seal? Does a school have to have an official seal?
Is a seal a stamp? What is a seal stamp?
Seal & Stamp Differences Can I order a seal as a stamp?
What is an embossed seal? What is an embosser seal?
What is a wax seal? What is an embossing angle?
What is an official company stamp? What is a foil seal?

What is an official seal?

A seal is the officially recognized and authorized emblem that represents an organization or individual. Official seals often feature logos, symbols, coats of arms, signets and custom text.

Companies, institutions, federations, schools, governments, individuals and organizations can all have an official seal to represent themselves.

The term “seal” is often used interchangeably with the term “embossed seal”, which refers to a raised, tactile impression.

official embossed seal

What is the purpose of a seal?

Seals are used like professional and official signatures to represent authorization or authenticity. A seal of approval can be placed on official documents, transcripts, and all types of correspondence.

Here are some common uses and examples of professional seals:

    • Companies use corporate seals to authenticate important business documents
    • Certified individuals such as notaries, land surveyors, and architects often have an official seal to certify documents and prove their professional status
    • Schools have official seals to authorize transcripts and important correspondence
    • Organizations, clubs, and groups often have an official seal to represent their official association

Is a seal a stamp?

An official seal is an emblem or visual representation. Official seals are commonly made into rubber stamps as an easy means of authorizing documents and leaving an official impression, but seals are not the same thing as stamps.

official seal, official stamped seal, and official embossed seal

What is the difference between a seal and a stamp?

Official seals are visual representations. An official seal can be stamped, embossed, printed on stickers and transferred to all sorts of different surfaces.
Rubbers stamps are physical devices that leave an inked impression of a design. Stamps are easily customizable and a great way to repetitively transfer information to paper surfaces.

Looking for a way to leave a seal impression? Custom stamps are a great way to make your official mark and leave your seal of approval on all types of documents.

What is an embossed seal?

Embossed seals are raised impressions. Embossers use sturdy plates to create custom indentations that are both tactile and visual. To learn more about embossers and their impressions, check out our Embosser Ordering & Help Guide.

wax seal on envelope

What is the wax seal on a letter?

Wax seals are used to enclose and secure letters and envelopes. To create a wax seal, wax is melted and applied to paper, then stamped with an impression. Wax seals are often used as a decorative accent, and the actual impressions can feature designs, monograms or official seals.

What is an official company stamp?

A company stamp is used to leave official impressions on important correspondence, share certificates, branding materials and all sorts of business documents. Official company stamps can feature anything from logos to contact information and corporate seals.

official corporate embossed seal

Does a company have to have an official seal?

Corporate seals are not a legal requirement for most businesses, LLCs and incorporations. While they are not a requirement, company seals are a professional way to authorize documents.

Corporate seals are typically stamped or embossed onto official documents, contracts, deeds and correspondence to prove authenticity and originality.

Does a school have to have an official seal?

Schools are generally not required to have an official seal. However, many schools may have a custom seal to authorize official transcripts, letterheads and documents, or to emboss graduate diplomas.

While individual schools may not be required to have an official seal, many education boards and associations do have an official seal requirement to prove educational standards.

stamp seal, embossed seal, wax seal and foil seal on paper

Stamps & Seals Frequently Asked Questions

What is a seal stamp?

A seal stamp is a custom rubber stamp that leaves an inked impression of an official seal. At CustomStamps.com, stamps are available in three types: self-inking, pre-inked and wood handle.

  • Wood Handle Stamps are great for a traditional stamping experience, and can be customized with an official seal to provide a classic seal impression.
  • Self-inking Stamps contain ink within the stamp body, and are great for quickly and repetitively leaving seal impressions on official documents in bulk.
  • Pre-inked Stamps are an excellent stamping option for seals, because they leave a crisp and clear impression that’s sure to convey all of the intricate details of an official seal.

To learn more about our stamp models, check out our guide on our stamp types and their differences.

official seal stamp on paper

Can I order a seal as a stamp?

Seals can be ordered and customized as rubber stamps. At CustomStamps.com, we have a variety of personalized stamp options that allow you to upload your official seal.

Official seal requirements for certain professions may vary. For example, some notary publics in certain states may be required to leave embossed seals on official documents, while others may have the option to leave a seal stamp impression. Check your official state or profession requirements and official seal guidelines before placing your seal stamp order.

What is an embosser seal?

Embosser seals are raised impressions. Embosser seals are often used to create address impressions, name impressions and all sorts of custom design impressions (including official or professional seals).

Embossed seals are commonly seen on letterheads, papers, envelopes, stationery and all types of lightweight and medium weight papers and documents.

embosser orientation examples

Why is choosing an embossing angle important?

Choosing an embossing angle is important to ensure your embosser provides impressions as intended. You should select an embosser angle or orientation that matches the direction you will be embossing from.

    • Top Embosser Orientation is for creating raised impressions from the top of a page. Choosing a Top Embosser Angle is commonly used for marking letterheads and monograms at the top of stationery and important documents.
    • Right Embosser Orientation is for creating impressions from the right side of a document. Choosing a Right Embosser Angle is commonly used for embossing pages within a book or bound documents.
    • Left Embosser Orientation is used to create impressions from the left side of paper. This orientation is often used for creating left justified address impressions or for marking the left side of important documents.
    • Bottom Embosser Orientation is used to create impressions from the bottom of a document. This is the most commonly ordered embosser angle at CustomStamps.com. Bottom embosser orientation is ideal for leaving an impression on the flap of an envelope, or at the bottom of professional documents.
gold foil embossed seal
Shop gold and silver foil seals at CustomStamps.com

What are foil seals for?

Embossing foils, also known as foil seals, are typically gold or silver foil stickers that have an embossed impression. Foil seals are not a requirement to create embossed impressions, they are an add-on option that is commonly used to create impressions on certifications, diplomas and other official documents.

At CustomStamps.com, we offer embosser foils in two colors: gold and silver to help you leave eye-catching and high-quality impressions.

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Make the most out of your professional or official seal! Our curated assortment of stamps and embossers are designed to help you perform your professional duties and put your official seal on display.

The rubber stamp and embosser experts at CustomStamps.com are proud to be your go-to resource on all things seals and stamps. Our curated collection of stamps and embossers are designed to help everyone from corporations to notary publics and certified individuals make their mark with their professional seal. For help with placing your custom stamp or embosser order, or with any further questions about professional seals, our customer service team is always here to help.

Kyndall Oakley is an SEO assistant and member of the HC Brands content team. she is a florida gator grad with a bachelor of science in advertisingOther helpful resources:
How to Re-ink Your Self-Inking Stamp
Signature Stamp Ordering & FAQs
Embosser Ordering and Help