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How to Switch From PDF to Word Document

PDFs are great for the purpose they serve. But, there will surely be a time when you need to move a Word document over to its PDF equivalent. If you’ve been searching for a way to convert documents between both formats, you need not look further. In this article, I’ll show you how to do exactly what the title says. Keep reading and learn about how to switch from pdf to word document or about how it is possible to transfer a pdf to a word document .

If you want to save the PDF file as Word document without purchasing any expensive software, you’re in the right place. For most people, PDF to Word conversion is not a pleasant task. However, I found a really cool software that makes this whole procedure so easy and fast!

Noticing how to change pdf documents into a word document can be frustrating. You got the file but it won’t open or edit. You download a free software program, however this doesn’t work either. If you’re asking yourself how do you convert pdf into a word document, you’re in luck! Here are three methods to do just that, step by step:

PDFs are often used when distributing documents so that they’re seen the same way by all parties. Because they’re designed in this way, they can be quite difficult to edit. You may want to convert your PDF to a Word document so that you can make changes to your text more easily.

Convert a PDF to a Word Document Using Acrobat DC or Acrobat Reader DC

Adobe’s own Acrobat DC and Acrobat Reader DC both offer an easy way to convert PDF files to Word documents. The bad news is that it ain’t free.

The full Acrobat DC has a standard version (Windows only) that runs $12.99 per month and a pro version (Windows and Mac) that runs $14.99 per month. And both require an annual commitment. Pretty overkill if all you need to do is convert a PDF to Word format once in a while. But if you already have Acrobat DC, then you should use that convert your PDFs.

Acrobat Reader DC, on the other hand is free, but you’ll need to pony up a $1.99 per month fee if you want it to be able to convert PDFs to other formats, like Word. If it’s something you need to do regularly, that fee is probably worth it because using Acrobat is the most reliable way to change your PDFs to Word documents, since it tends to maintain formatting pretty well.

We’re going to look at using the full Acrobat DC to make the conversion in our example here. If you’re using Acrobat Reader DC, the process is pretty much the same. You just won’t have quite as many formats to which you can convert. Both support Word, though.

First, open up the PDF in Acrobat. Over on the right side of the window, click the “Export PDF” command.

Next, select the “Microsoft Word” option on the left. On the right, selecting “Word Document” converts the PDF to a modern Word document in the DOCX format. Selecting “Word 97-2003 Document” converts the PDF to the older DOC format.

When you’ve made your choice, click the “Export” button.

On the next screen, choose where you want to save your new Word document.

Type a name for the document, and then click the “Save” button.

Your PDF is now saved as a Word document, so pop it open in Word and get to editing.

How to convert PDF files into Word documents:

  1.  Open a PDF file in Acrobat DC.
  2.  Click on the “Export PDF” tool in the right pane.
  3.  Choose Microsoft Word as your export format, and then choose “Word Document.”
  4. Click “Export.” If your PDF contains scanned text, the Acrobat Word converter will run text recognition automatically.
  5. Save your new Word file:
    Name your converted file, choose DOC or DOCX file format, and click the “Save” button. That’s it.

How to convert a PDF to Word online

Follow these easy steps to turn a PDF into a Microsoft Word document:

Click the Select a file button above, or drag and drop a PDF into the drop zone.

Select the PDF you want to convert to the DOCX file format.

Watch Acrobat automatically convert the file from PDF to Word document.

Download the converted Word document or sign in to share it.

How do I convert a PDF to Word without losing the formatting?

As the inventor of the PDF file format, Adobe makes sure our Acrobat PDF to Word converter preserves your document formatting. When you use our online conversion tool, your fonts, images, and alignments will look as expected on a Mac and in Windows. The converted file is an editable Word document that you can start using right away in Microsoft Word.

You can also try Adobe Acrobat Pro free for seven days to: convert files to and from Microsoft 365, edit PDF documents, edit scanned documents with OCR, merge PDFs, organize or rotate PDF pages, split PDFs, reduce file sizes, and convert HTML, TXT, RTF, PNG, JPG, BMP, and other formats to PDF.

What software do I need to convert from PDF to Word?

You don’t need any other software to convert a PDF to Microsoft Word when you use the Acrobat online Convert to PDF tool. Just open the tool in your preferred browser on any operating system, select your file, and let Acrobat complete the conversion online.

Will my converted Word document be secure?

Yes, your converted Word file will be secure. Adobe is known for its commitment to security and privacy, so you can convert PDF files to Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, or Excel with trust and confidence.

Convert a PDF to a Word Document Using Adobe Acrobat DC

One of the best ways to convert your PDF to a Word document is by using Adobe Acrobat DC. Unfortunately, Adobe Acrobat DC isn’t free. The standard version costs $12.99 per month and is for Windows only. The pro version, which is available for Windows or Mac, will set you back $14.99 per month.

Adobe Acrobat DC is an amazing application and if you’re going to be working with PDFs on the daily, it’s certainly worth the money. However, if you just need to convert a PDF to a Word document once a while, there are other free methods of doing so. If that’s the case, skip to the next sections. If you already have Adobe Acrobat DC or if you’re going to purchase it, read on.

To get started, open the PDF in Acrobat DC and click “Export PDF” in the right-hand pane.

Click Export PDF

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Next, choose “Microsoft Word” and then “Word Document” as the export format. Click “Export.”

Export PDF

IDG / Marshall Gunnell

All that’s left to do is choose a location to save the document. After you pick a location, Acrobat DC will convert the document.

Convert PDF to Word (Steps)

In the steps below, I am using a PC with the Microsoft 365 subscription. To learn about the latest version of Microsoft Office, check it out here.

1. Open Microsoft Word

Hit the Windows key type Word and hit Enter to open Microsoft Word

Because we are using Microsoft Word as our PDF converter, you need to start with Microsoft Word open. Doing so, you will not need any third-party applications or software programs to make this work.

The fastest way to open Microsoft Word on a PC is to hit the Windows key, type Word, and hit Enter.

To learn more Windows 10 shortcuts like this that will save you time, read our guide here.

2. Launch the Open File Dialog Box

Hit Control plus F12 to open the Save As dialog box

The fastest way to get at the Open Dialog box is to hit Ctrl + F12 on your keyboard. This immediately launches the open file dialog box in Word, Excel and PowerPoint. So it is a universal Microsoft Office keyboard shortcut.

Alternatively, you can click the File tab in Word and then click Open and Browse.

Click Open in Word and select browse to find your document

3. Locate the PDF File on Your Computer

Use the open dialog box to find the PDF file you want to convert to Word on your computer

Use the File Explorer dialog box to find the PDF file you want to convert and select it.

To learn how to shortcut the File Explorer using your Windows 10 shortcuts, read our guide here.

4. Click Open, Then Click OK

Once you find and select your PDF file, click Open

Once you find your file, select it with your mouse and click on Open.

You will then receive the following message:

“Word will now convert your PDF to an editable Word document. This may take a while. The resulting Word document will be optimized to allow you to edit the text, so it might not look exactly like the original PDF, especially if the original file contained lots of graphics.”

Click OK to continue.

In the Word will now convert your PDF as an editable Word document dialog box, click OK

5. Review Your Newly Created Word Document

Review your new Word document to make sure it converted properly

Depending on how many graphics were in your original file, Word can do a great or mediocre job at the conversion.

If your PDF file was previously created in Microsoft Word, and then saved as a PDF (for details, read our guide here), Word will do a great job converting your document.

See my comments below on what types of content work best when converting PDF to Word.

6. Save Your Word Document

Hit F12 to open the Save As dialog box in Microsoft Word

Before you get too excited about your new editable Word document, don’t forget to save it to your computer.

The fastest way to save a file on your computer is by hitting F12 to open the Save As dialog box. This allows you to not only rename your file (if you want to), but also to choose where you want to save it on your computer.

Export PDF to Word Use Adobe ExportPDF Service

Adobe Export PDF is an Adobe Document Cloud service that lets you export PDF to Word or Excel, online or on a mobile device. Compare to expensive Adobe Acrobat Pro, Adobe Export PDF costs much lower, it only needs $23.88 a year. So if you’re an Adobe user and you have frequent PDF converting requirements, this is a better option then the free trial of Adobe Acrobat DC.

In conclusion, for text-heavy PDF files that don’t contain many photos, we suggest choosing Google Docs and Microsoft Word (2013 and above) to convert formats to Word.doc. For PDFs with lots of graphics, using online or desktop PDF to Word converters like EasePDF, PDFCandy, Adobe Acrobat and Adobe ExportPDF is a better option.

Convert a PDF to a Word Document Using Microsoft Word

You can also convert a PDF to a Word Document using Microsoft Word. The only downside is, though this method is free, it often comes with certain formatting issues. Depending on the complexity of your document, you may want to consider using Adobe Acrobat DC. If your file relatively simple in content, Word will do the trick.

First, locate the PDF on your computer. Right-click the document and then hover your cursor over the “Open with” option in the context menu. In some cases, you may see “Word” in the sub-menu. If you don’t see it, select “Choose another app” instead.

Choose an app to open with the PDF with

IDG / Marshall Gunnell

A pop-up window will appear. If you see “Word” here, select it. If not, click “More apps.”

Click more Apps

IDG / Marshall Gunnell

Scroll down, select “Word,” and then click “OK.”

Open the PDF with Word

IDG / Marshall Gunnell

Word will launch and a pop-up message will appear, stating that the program will convert your PDF to an editable document and that the results may be different from the source file. Click “OK” to continue.

Click OK in Word

IDG / Marshall Gunnell

Word will then convert your PDF to a Word document.

Convert a PDF to a Word Document Using an Online Conversion Tool

For security purposes, we recommend locally converting your PDF to a Word document. Whenever you upload your document to a remote server, there’s always a chance that the contents might be leaked. However, if your document doesn’t contain sensitive data, another reliable way to turn your PDF into a Word document is by using an online converter. These programs all work the same—all you have to do is upload your PDF and the converter will change it to a Word document.

There’s no shortage of online PDF converters, either. Bigpdfconvertersmallpdfpdftodoc, and pdftoword are some of the more popular ones out there. All of them have successfully completed the task without any issue in my personal experience. Even better, all of them are free to use. Read through each one’s policy on how they handle your document to decide which is best for you.


Converting PDF to Word is a common task that most of us come across every now and then. At times, it helps us transfer PDF documents into a format that can be edited by various people within our team or made available for others on the web.

Transferring a PDF to a Word document is an easy process. The PDF file that you have designed and published as an eBook has all the required information, you just need to transfer this information into the Word document.

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