Copy and paste is an extremely handy function across different systems and apps, we probably do this multiple times per day, including copying from PDF to Word.
To copy text from PDF to Word, we can use a built-in or free PDF viewer to copy from the PDF, and then paste to a Word document. But this may lead to formatting loss, and we will have to adjust all the line and paragraph format manually which is tedious and open to error. So, in this article, we will show you 5 quick ways to copy and paste from PDF to Word without changing formatting.
Microsoft Word has a useful behavior to import PDF contents. Its versions of 2013, 2016, 2019, 2021 and 365 can directly open PDF document, by making a copy of the file, then converting it to Word format. In the process of conversion, Microsoft Word will attempt to match the original layout and formatting, to make the Word file look similar to the original PDF document as much as possible. Here is how to copy text from PDF to Word in Microsoft Word:
However, Microsoft Word allows users to copy text from PDF to Word without changing format only when the PDF contains mostly texts, if you file is full of charts, graphics, images, Word might not be able to detect the element or keep the format. And you may run into formatting issues as follows:
Formatting issues can be hardly avoided even we use Microsoft Word To copy text from PDF to Word, is there any solution to copy and paste from PDF to Word without losing formatting? Luckily yes, we can use dedicated PDF tools that build in accurate PDF to Word conversion feature to make the whole process far simpler.
Even better, these tools comes with rich features, including PDF unlock, OCR, Edit, etc. Here we cover 5 best tools to copy and paste from PDF to Word without changing formatting.
Cisdem PDF Converter OCR is a powerful PDF converter, which allows you to convert both native and scanned PDF to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, ePub and others in original formatting. With its PDF creator, you can also save Word or other document back to well-formatted PDF.
It is Easy to Use
As a PDF converter, Cisdem doesn’t require users to manually set up or tweak a long list of preferences, with several clicks to import, select format and convert, you will get a Word document from the PDF file effortlessly.
Copy from Native and Scanned PDF
Cisdem builds in the OCR feature too. With OCR, Cisdem allows users to copy texts from both scanned PDF and image, the texts or tables in your image-based files will change to be searchable and editable.
Cisdem will make the created Word document look the same as your original PDF files, there will be no garbled texts, strange characters, line breaks, extra paragraph gaps, image misplacement, etc. The font, style, image resolution, all the details will be kept the same as original.
Batch Process PDFs
To process multiple PDFs, you just need to batch import and enable the conversion, the conversion will auto start after the last one finishes.
Copy from PDF to Excel, PowerPoint, etc. as well
Not only save PDF as Word format, Cisdem PDF Converter OCR can also help copy texts or tables from PDF to Excel, PowerPoint, Keynote, Pages, ePub, HTML, Text and RTFD, so you can turn your PDF files into any recyclable resource.
Adobe should sound familiar to all of us, it brought us so many great solutions to process graphics, documents, etc. and it is also the creator of PDF format. If you want to copy PDF from Word and keep formatting, Adobe should be considered, even though its price is too high for many of us.
It is, after all, a professional PDF editor, it can open, view, edit and export your PDF files. By rendering PDF in Adobe, you will be able to directly copy and paste from PDF to a Word document, but this may lead to format loss a little. You are recommended to use its conversion feature to save as Word and do the copy & paste later.
No one will doubt Adobe Acrobat’s power. In the field of PDF solutions, Adobe is the authority, it offers all features users may need to deal with their PDF files, edit, sign, protect, annotate, convert, compare, compress, etc.
Cisdem PDFMaster is an excellent Windows & Mac PDF editor. It integrates features like edit, organize, protect, sign, create, convert, compare, search or fill PDFs, etc. It cannot only convert PDF to Word without changing formatting, but also convert with OCR recognition and priority.
It is capable of opening, editing and converting all kinds of PDF, native, scanned, printed or protected PDFs, even images.
Not only exports PDF as Word, it also converts PDFs to Excel, PowerPoint, Text, ePub, RTF and so on, even with OCR capability to turn PDF scans to editable Word/Excel/PowerPoint, etc.
Cisdem PDFMaster allows users to edit texts, images and links in a PDF document, you can select any part of the PDF file, change and format as you want.
Cisdem PDFMaster has all the PDF tools you will need to work on a PDF, including create PDF, organize PDF pages, fill form, add text field, protect PDF, redact PDF, compress PDF, compare and watermark PDFs, etc.
ABBYY FineReader is deemed as the best alternative to Adobe Acrobat, but more powerful on PDF OCR, it recognizes more languages and gets highly accurate OCR result. It integrates features like edit, organize, collaborate, protect, sign, create, convert, compare, search or fill PDFs, etc.
It is capable of opening, editing and converting all kinds of PDF, native, scanned, printed, handwritten or protected PDFs, and there are tools offered to enhance the PDF files in case of conversion or OCR.
ABBYY FineReader can directly turn papers from a connected scanner to digital copy, in PDF or other supported format, it helps build a paperless office with ease and efficiency.
Convertio is a web service to convert various types of files, including videos, audios, images, documents, archives, etc., it supports files from your computer, Google Drive, Dropbox or from an URL.
After file conversion in Convertio, you will be able to copy from PDF to Word, Excel, PowerPoint or other document types.
There is no way Convertio’s conversion performance can match with those professional offline ones, but comparing with other online free tools, Convertios beat them all in many ways. It can keep the formatting, but you will still need to manually adjust.
Regardless the formatting issue, you can easily copy and paste from PDF to Word, if you cannot do so, there may be 2 reasons for this:
1) The PDF is a scanned file or created from an image
If a PDF is created from paper scans or images, the texts won’t be readable by your Mac or Windows PC, you have to use OCR technology to make the texts readable first, then copy and paste to a Word document. You are recommended to copy text from scanned PDF to Word using Cisdem, which supports accurate text recognition, formatting retention, batch ocr, multiple output export.
2) The PDF is protected with a owner/permission password
If there is an owner/permission password added to your PDF, you won’t be allowed to copy from the PDF file, unless you remove the PDF password protection first, you can unlock this kind of PDF by entering password. If you want a quick way to remove protection or forgot the password, Cisdem PDF Password Remover will help you regain your access to the files.
As we can conclude, to copy text from PDF to Word without losing formatting, we’d better convert PDF to Word document instead of direct copying and pasting. Also, we’d really advise not to upload a highly private PDF file to any online PDF to Word tool, which tends to store your file for some time and doesn’t fully maintain the same formatting as in original file.
Connie has been writing for Mac productivity and utility apps since 2009. Each review and solution is based on her practical tests, she is aways energetic and trustworthy in this field.