How to Add Hyperlink to PDF with or Without Adobe Acrobat?

Connie Wisley
April 26, 2023 Preview 86.8K Preview 0
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These days, we deal with PDF files a lot, since PDF is a highly flexible format that can be easily viewed and manipulated on different devices. To enrich a PDF document, we may need to add internal or external hyperlink to a PDF file. Many users deem Adobe Acrobat as the only way to add a hyperlink to PDF, but there are alternatives to add hyperlink to PDF without Adobe Acrobat.

Table of Contents

Best Option to Add Hyperlink to PDF Without Adobe Acrobat (Windows & Mac)

Until today, many of us choose to convert PDF to the editable Word format to perform the PDF editing tasks, but it can actually cause formatting problems, so we will start with a better way to add hyperlink to PDF on Mac or Windows. 

To add hyperlink to PDF without Adobe Acrobat, here we recommend using a PDF editor first. With the help of a one-stop PDF editor, you can insert links, edit links, move links, even remove links as you like. Link to a specific page or URL also works in this part. Cisdem PDFMaster is recommended due to its excellent performance in editing. Whether you want to jump to the specific page, or quick access to a URL, PDFMater makes it an easy task.

You can even drag and drop PDF files back to the program to convert PDF, create PDF, reduce file size, add passwords and unlock passwords in batch. It features practical editing tools for you to edit (replace text/add text), make comments (annotate/add shapes/insert stamps/free hand/sign), make fillable forms, manipulate pages and more. There is no reason to say no to the almighty PDF editor.

To Add Hyperlink to a PDF, follow the guide below:

  1. Try Cidem PDFMaster with a 14-day free trial.
    Free Download   Free Download
  2. Go to Open Files and upload a PDF to the program.
  3. Once the file is opened, drag your cursor to select the text in your PDF that you want to add hyperlink. Then click on the Link pdf master01
  4. There are two ways for you: Enter URL you would like to link to/ Select the page number you would like to link to. Select the way you prefer and click pdf master02
  5. Then the content that you insert link is marked with an underline. When you click it, the program will jump to the page/URL you pdf master03
  6. Finally, save your PDF file.

Add Hyperlink to PDF Free Using Online PDF Editor

Without Adobe Acrobat and any desktop programs, we can add hyperlink to PDF using online tools like Google Docs and PDFescape with Internet connected. Read on and pick the best one for you.

#1 How to Hyperlink a PDF in Google Docs?

Although it is not a professional PDF editor, I have to say that it has covered the basic functions that most users need to use, such as editing, converting, annotating, sharing, even comparing documents. Google Docs allows you to turn PDF into editable Word and provides numerous annotating tools to insert hyperlink/image/chart/watermark/page numbers/comment. Now, let’s get started by hyperlink a PDF with Google Docs online for free.

  1. Log into your Google Drive and open a PDF with Google Docs.
  2. Navigate to where you want to insert the hyperlink. Then tap on Insert > Link.add hyperlink google docs1
  3. Now you can paste the hyperlink to the text box and apply it.add hyperlink google docs2
  4. Now, you can find the hyperlink in your PDF. Plus, coping, editing or removing the link also works.add hyperlink google docs3
  5. Finally, go to File > Download > PDF Document.

#2 How Add Hyperlink to PDF Online Free with PDFescape

PDFescape is a smart online PDF editor across web and Windows devices that allows you to edit PDF files, annotate text, fill out forms, password protect PDF files and share documents online. Here we take online PDFescape to demonstrate how to add hyperlink to PDF for free.

  1. Go to PDFescape.
  2. Upload the PDF you want to add hyperlink.add hyperlink pdfescape1
  3. Choose Link on the Insert tab, then drag a box onto the text that you want to add hyperlink. Enter the URL that you want to link to, click OK to apply.add hyperlink pdfescape2
  4. Save and download the PDF with hyperlink added.

Can I Add Hyperlink to PDF Free in Mac Preview?

Preview the built-in app to view and markup PDF files on Mac, it is understandable that all Mac users try this tool first when adding hyperlink to a PDF. However, it is pitiful that you cannot add hyperlink to PDF in Mac preview, it supports adding URL link to PDF only. If this is OK for you, you can follow the steps to add a link to your PDF with Mac Preview.

Steps to Add Link to PDF Free with Preview

  1. Open the PDF with Mac Preview.
  2. Go to Tools > Annotate > Text.add link to pdf 01
  3. Add the URL link and use the text settings to customize the link text.add link to pdf 02
  4. Then go to File > Export as PDF, the link will be added to your PDF and it is clickable.add link to pdf 03

Tips: Don’t just save the PDF after adding URL link by clicking File>Save, otherwise the link won’t be clickable.

Add Hyperlink to PDF in Microsoft Word

If you are a Microsoft Word user, you may have noticed that Microsoft Word 2016 and Office 365 allow inserting PDF into Word, once the PDF is opened in Word, you will be allowed to edit and add hyperlink to the file.

  1. Open the Microsoft Word 2016.add hyperlink to pdf with word
  2. File > Open to upload the PDF, a dialogue will prompt as following, click “OK” to import the PDF.
  3. You will find the file is editable, and add the hyperlink as needed. Then, export the Word file as PDF, you will find the hyperlink is added to your PDF.

Note 1: According to the feedbacks, the original layout of inserted PDF may be changed in Microsoft Word 2016. So, before you add hyperlink to PDF free in Word, you’d better manually adjust the formatting.

Note 2: For users who installed Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2011, 2013, etc., you can’t open the PDF file in Word directly. The only method is to insert it via object. Worse yet, you are not capable of editing the inserted PDF, but to convert PDF to DOCX/ DOC format previously.

Insert Hyperlink to PDF in Photoshop

If you have installed Adobe Photoshop, you are able to insert hyperlink in PDF via Photoshop too, but the PDF file will have to be saved in HTML format.

Steps to Insert Hyperlink to PDF in Photoshop

  1. Open a PDF file in Photoshop.
  2. Right-click the Crop Tool in the toolbar, you will see the Slice Tool, just click on it (keyboard shortcut C).add hyperlink to pdf in photoshop 01
  3. Draw your selection in the PDF file, and right-click to select “Edit Slice Options”.
  4. In the opened dialog box, enter the URL you’d like to link to it and click “OK”. add hyperlink to pdf in photoshop 02
  5. Go to File > Export > Save for Web (Legacy).
  6. In the pop-out box, select either JPG or PNG options, and click on “Save”.
  7. In the “Save for Web” window, type in your file name. And select “HTML and Images” from the Format dropdown. Finally, click “Save”.

Insert Hyperlink to PDF with Adobe Acrobat if You Have Installed

Adobe Acrobat series are always good solutions to edit and manage PDF files. You will be allowed to edit every bit of the PDF freely within the program, such as add PDF text, add page numbers, add hyperlink, delete sentences, change font size, etc. If you have installed Adobe Acrobat on your Windows PC or Mac, here are the steps to insert hyperlink to a PDF file.

Steps to Add Hyperlink to PDF with Adobe Acrobat

  1. Open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat DC
  2. Go to Tools > Edit PDF > Link. Choose “Add/Edit Web or Document Link” and drag a box to add the hyperlink to where you want to.add hyperlink to pdf with adobe
  3. Then save the file and the hyperlink is added to the PDF.


So, Adobe is not the only solution to add hyperlink to PDF, you can utilize Cisdem PDFMaster, Microsoft Word, PDF converter, even online free PDF editors to add hyperlinks. But when using online free tools, you’d better give a second thought, uploading files to online server will bring potential risk of information leakage. If you are dealing with confidential files, pay for a powerful PDF editor like Cisdem PDFMaster, then add hyperlink or any other contents you are allowed to add.

Connie Wisley
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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.

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