How to Convert PDF to Word on Mac: A Complete Guide for 2018

2018-09-29 21:11:05 / Posted by Connie Wisley to PDF Follow @ Connie

How to convert PDF to Word on Mac is a too often heard topic, mostly because we desire to:

  • Make changes on a PDF, open PDF in word on mac, even to insert PDF in word;
  • Read PDF files on Mac when there are no PDF readers;
  • Edit and optimize the contents of PDF files;
  • Let the screen-reading tools easily read the word documents for the blind.

Converting PDF to word on Mac can make these want-to-do things accessible. Here we will show you how to convert PDF to word on Mac (Mojave included) with 7 ways, by using online free or best PDF to Word Converter for Mac, according to different situations.

Quick-Start PDF to Word Mac Solution

  1. Download the free trial of PDF Converter OCR, install and launch it.
  2. Drag and drop PDF files into the program.
  3. Specify the PDF pages you want to save as Word, and select output as Doc or Docx.
  4. Click "Convert“ to change PDF to Word on Mac.

Notes: This method is not only applicable to convert PDF to Word on mac, but also workable to perform virtually any conversion between PDF and other commonly used formats.

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Convert Any PDF to Word on Mac (Top-rated Solution)

We will start with a solution that can convert any PDF to Word on Mac for all users. Since there are basically 3 types of PDF we need to deal with very often:

  • Convert native PDF;
  • Convert scanned or image PDF;
  • Convert encrypted PDF;

Besides, you may need to convert these PDF to more than just Word format. To make full use of the existing PDF resources, sometimes you still need to convert PDF to Excel, HTML, or Pages, etc.

However, not every PDF to word converter for Mac works satisfactorily acceptably. Many of them might bring annoying problems, such as holding messy layout, failing to export scanned PDF, loading and converting large size PDF very slowly, etc. On this occasion, we have to picked out the best PDF to word converter for Mac.

According to OSXDaily, which is known as the top website covers reviews for best Apple hardware and software, PDF Converter OCR is chosen as the top solution to convert PDF to Word on mac. It is an easy-to-use PDF Converter with OCR ability, which can convert both native and scanned PDF, even image documents into editable and well-formatted word documents, also to 15 other formats.

Free Download

Follow the Steps to Convert Any PDF to Word on Mac

Step 1Import PDF for Conversion(Batch Conversion is Supported).

Once the PDF Converter OCR is launched on your Mac, you just need to drag and drop the PDF file to the interface of the "Converter".

Also, you can add or delete PDF files by clicking the "+" or "-" icon at the bottom of the program. Batch conversion is supported as well.

convert pdf to word on mac


Step 2Convert PDF to Word on Mac.

After adding the PDF files, you can tweak the settings for locked PDF or scanned PDF. Then choose the output as Word (Docx/Doc). Of course, you can convert the PDF to other formats.

Click on "Convert" button to start the PDF to Word conversion on Mac. You can check the conversion status with the progress bar. Once finished, you will be able to open the PDF in Word on Mac.

save pdf as word on mac

Step 3Finally, Check the PDF to Word Conversion Results.

You will find no information lost, and no formatting messed up. Converting PDF to Word on Mac is not a problem anymore! You can open PDF in Word on Mac at anytime now.

convert pdf to word on mac with cisdem 04

Tips to convert scanned PDF to word on Mac

What if converting protected PDF to word on Mac?

4 Recommended Solutions on How to Convert PDF to Word on Mac

  • Solution 1. Adobe Acrobat
  • Solution 2. Cisdem PDF to Word Converter
  • Solution 3. Online PDF to Word Converter (Smallpdf and Google Docs)
  • Solution 4. Mac Built-in Tool (Automator and Preview)

Solution 1. For Users Who Adobe Installed

Adobe Acrobat enables users to convert PDF to word on mac and it may be the most convenient way for people who already got Adobe Acrobat to read PDF files because it does not require installing any other services or programs. In addition, the operation is quite simple.

Follow the steps to convert PDF to Editable Word on Mac Now!

#01. For Users using Adobe Acrobat DC Pro:

  • Step 1. Open PDF with Adobe Acrobat DC.
  • Step 2. Go to Tools>Export PDF.
  • Step 3. Choose Word as output, then click “Export”, the PDF will be converted as Word format on mac.

convert pdf to word on mac adobe 02

#02. For Users using Adobe Acrobat XI Pro (The old version):

  • Step 1: Open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat for conversion.
  • Step 2: Click the "File" option on the top navigation bar of Adobe Acrobat.
  • Step 3: Choose "Save As Other" from the menu.
  • Step 4: Select output as "Microsoft Word" to convert PDF to Word on mac.
  • Step 5: (Optional) Type a name for the document, then click the "Save" button.

convert pdf to word with adobe

If your PDF is scanned, try to perform Adobe OCR and save them into Word on mac.


  1. The output format is limited
  2. It does not support batch conversion
  3. Sale a stiff price

Can Acrobat Reader Convert PDF to Word on Mac?

Acrobat Reader is totally free of charge for all Mac users. You can view, print, comment and share PDF file via it. But unfortunately, it only supports the basic reading features. You can’t create PDF, edit PDF, or even export PDF to Office format. So don’t try it for free to convert PDF to word on Mac via the Acrobat Reader.

Solution 2. Best PDF to Word Converter for Mac (Native PDF Only)

If your conversion is highly focused on native PDF to Word, a lightweight professional PDF to Word Converter for Mac is also a good choice.

Cisdem PDF to Word Converter for Mac (Price at only $29.99), is picked as the best PDF to Word Converter for Mac by many users, which can retain file quality as much as the original. It enables users to:

  • Accurately reproduce the original layout including images, tables and columns, which will reduce the need to retype the document manually or get rid of the tedious copy-paste job;
  • Save PDF as Word and Rtfd document;
  • Convert encrypted PDF files. With a known PDF password, the Cisdem PDF to Word Converter for Mac will directly remove the password protection from PDF and convert;
  • It is quite small with a size of 7MB, also it is extremely easy to use;

Follow the Steps to Convert PDF to Word on Mac!

  1. Import PDF for Conversion by drag & drop the PDFs into it or directly click "+" to add files. You can upload up to 50 PDF files each time.
  2. Select all pages or page range as needed. Choose the output format "PDF to Docx" or "PDF to Rtfd" before PDF to Word conversion on mac.

Click the convert button to begin conversion process. If you need to convert in batch, click the files and press "Shift" to choose several PDFs for conversion. The status bar will indicate the process status.

insert pdf to word on mac

​Solution 3. Convert PDF to Word Mac Free Online (Windows Also Supported)

#01: Online Free PDF to Word Converter

People always return to online free PDF to Word tools for convenience and free of charge. These tools are genuinely recommended if you are working on simple and native PDFs.

You can choose Smallpdf, ZAMZAR, PDF Converter, Online2PDF,PDF to DOC, PDF Online or whatever as you like. But here we will take Smallpdf as a demonstration to show how a native and simple PDF is converted to Word format, in oder to open PDF in Word on mac.

  1. Go to Smallpdf, and upload PDF files from your mac, Dropbox or Google Drive;open pdf in word free
  2. Click the download link to download converted file in Word format. Your PDF to Word conversion is done.

#02: Convert PDF to Word with Google Docs

Google provides an online platform for users to manage their documents---Google Docs. In Google Docs, you can open PDFs and download the file in Word or other editable formats.

  1. Go to Google account>Google Drive;
  2. Click "New" to upload PDF file;
  3. Right click on the file,open with Google Docs;
  4. Go to File>Download as>Word. Your PDF will be converted into Word on mac.

export pdf to word on mac google


  1. The most annoying problem for the online solutions is absolutely the conversion quality. A bunch of PDF elements may not be converted just right with these free solutions ( Font effects, Special symbols that appears in an equation or other languages, Tables with cell spacing,Frames Footnotes and Endnotes, audio; video; images; PDF active elements, PDF bookmarks, PDF comments, PDF tags)
  2. Be aware of the risk to get your PDF file information leaked as you need to upload PDF to the server for conversion
  3. Free service is limited, in terms of page quantity, file size, conversion mode, etc
  4. Scanned PDF cannot be converted, you will need to go to OCR tools

Solution 4. Can Automator and Preview Convert PDF to Word on Mac?

As a mac user, we prefer to seek solutions via apps that coming with MacOS, such as Preview and Automator, they are both good and free programs to manipulate PDFs in their own way.

However, can Preview or Automator convert PDF to Word on mac? Yes, but…

#01. Free Convert PDF to Word on Mac with Automator

Automator allows users to create workflows for automating tasks, it can help save time and efforts on manually changing each file. With Automator, Mac users can extract PDF text, then open text file in Word, and finally save PDF as Word on mac.

  1. Open Automator in Application, select “Workflow”, then click “Choose”;
  2. In the left column, choose “Files &Folders”, then drag “Ask for Finder Items” to the right column;pdf to word automator
  3. Still in the left column, choose “PDFs”, then drag “Extract PDF Text” to the right column;change pdf to word with mac automator
  4. Press Commant+S, and choose the file format as “Application”;turn pdf to word with mac automator
  5. Open the Automator file saved on your desktop, then click “Run” to select your PDF for conversion, a Text file will be generated from the PDF
  6. Open the text file with Word, and your PDF is converted to Word on mac now.


  1. Can not save PDF to Word on mac directly
  2. Take too much time and effort

#02. Free Convert PDF to Word with Preview

Preview is the PDF viewer and annotator to manage PDF files on mac, it can view, annotate, combine, sign and convert PDFs. However, it can only export PDF to image formats. And the only way to convert PDF to Word with Preview will be copying and tasting:

  1. Open PDF with Mac Preview;
  2. Copy and paste the PDF contents into a Word file;
  3. Save the Word file;


  1. Nothing helpful to boost productivity

Comparison of 7 Best PDF to Word Converters for Mac

PDF to Word Converter Accuracy Multi-language Recognition Desktop/Online User Group
PDF Converter OCR 98% or above Desktop For both novices, general and advanced users, as it's easy-to-use, productive and affordable ($59.99/lifetime).
Adobe Acrobat Pro 96% Desktop Only for advanced users. It's dedicated, but needs pay $14.99 per month.
PDF to Word Converter 98% or above X Desktop For novices and general users, coming with single function but high accuracy. ($29.99/lifetime)
Smallpdf 70% X Online Apply to users who don't convert PDF files frequently, but still have requirements for convertion results
Google Docs 50% Online It's helpful for those who often use Google Docs and don't expect a great converting effect.
Automator 40% X Mac Built-in Tool Suit for people who only want to simply handle PDF files when they are off net and without professional apps installed
Preview 60% X Mac Built-in Tool Same user group as Automator, but Preview is easier to operate and more accurate

enlightened If you wish to check the most intuitive presentation, be sure to check this link: Before VS After Conversion Results of 7 Best PDF to Word Converters for Mac

From the comparison of before & after conversion, we can easily find Cisdem PDF Converter OCR and Cisdem PDF to Word Converter get no different from before. It remains the same font, color, table, picture, order, etc. and reaching 98%, even 100% accuracy. If you need a specialised OCR tool to handle high volume work perfectly, I will vote for PDF Converter OCR right off the bat. As it's the best tool to convert scanned PDF to Word on Mac with a heap of features:

  • Convert native, scanned, image and encrypted PDF to Word on Mac;
  • Retain original file quality in Word output (such as Font effects, special symbols, tables, frames, image resolution, etc.);
  • Convert all PDFs and images to searchable PDF, to editable Excel, PowerPoint, Keynote, Pages, ePub and total 16 formats;
  • Convert document from one image format to another image format, e.g. PNG to JPG, BMP to JPG, Gift to JPG;
  • Create PDF from Word, PowerPoint, ePub, image and so on;
  • Merge, compress and protect PDF outputs when creating PDF with this app;

Free Download

Extended Knowledge on Word Format

extended knowledge on Word format

Word, the abbreviation of Microsoft Word or MS-WORD created by company Microsoft, is a graphical word processing program enables users to type with. It allows the users to type and save documents. The Word can be outputted in Doc or Docx format.

Doc is a binary file format system which can save the formatted text, images, graphs and page, it is the older format used in MS Word 2003 and earlier version.

While Docx is a XML format that can coordinate between different Office programs, it is the default format used in Word 2007 and later version.

The Difference Between Doc and Docx.

  • Doc can be read in all MS Word versions but Docx can be only read in Word 2007 and later version unless you have installed some adds-on or compatibility packs in MS Word 2003;
  • Docx file size is 75% less than the file size of doc;
  • Docx files can easily convert into doc, .html, .rtf and other file formats, but a doc has to be converted in the aid of professional software;
  • Docx is an opener file format that can be easily accessible;
  • Docx is more powerful and versatile on features.

It seems that Docx is a better output format. So, for your convenience, you are recommended to convert your PDFs into Docx.

Final Words

There must be more methods to convert PDF to Word on mac, direct or indirect, free or paid. Like any other users, you may hold more preferences to solutions that can bring high quality conversion results, also can greatly save our time and work. Why not have a try on PDF Converter OCR, the one kills all problems on PDF to Word conversion on mac.

Convert Now

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21 Comments Leave a Reply

  • CoCo

    Thanks for the informative sharing. I used to use Adobe on my old Mac, but now I am using Cisdem PDF Converter OCR on my new macbook air, it affordable to me and works well so far, almost all the conversion preserved the layout as original, except some complex text. Good work!

    7 months ago REPLY
  • Karen

    Like the PDF Converter OCR recommended in this article very much. It help me convert all my needed scanned pdf to the word i need. Save me much time! No need to retype the word anymore. Haha

    7 months ago REPLY
  • lily

    nice converter!!! the exported word is VERY NICE. I have compared with other converters. As this one is cheaper, i decide to make a free trial. It can fully meet my needs.I will pay for it for long time use. Thanks for your sharing!!!

    7 months ago REPLY
  • Haley

    Thanks for the guide, each solution to convert PDF to Word on a Mac covered in this guide is workable. Your recommendation is good, a tool that can work on any PDFs is really powerful.

    7 months ago REPLY
  • Hannah

    Super helpful. Finally someone with the answer! Thanks!

    1 years ago REPLY
  • Bekky

    I think more users will choose PDFConverterOCR because of the OCR feature, you know, if you are desk-bound, you will deal with scanned files.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Carbin

    I have tried the PDF to Word Converter, and come here for a comment thanking you guys. It saved me the trouble about formatting, thanks.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Smithc390

    As a Newbie, I am continuously searching online for articles that can aid me. Thank you abckeggdabddkecb

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Johne863

    What's up it's me, I am also visiting this site daily, this website is actually pleasant and the visitors are really sharing fastidious thoughts. ekdcfbgcdggk

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Jason Mek

    Nice post. I got several scanned pdf to convert to Word, i tried the software and amazing, thanks.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Darrance

    That's the pefrect insight in a thread like this.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Eric

    You must pay for all the methods. You should point that out when posting

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Alexander

    I used Cisdem PDF to Word Converter with OCR to convert my scanned PDF files, it worked very well. There are many tables and images on my PDF file, this converter convert them perfectly. The only regret is that this application doesn't supports to batch convert, but so did others.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Laura

    When I click on the Convert button, a screen pops up asking for a "key code" before it will convert. What's the key code?

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Rosa

    Many developers provides a free trial for each users, but if you want to use those application to convert, you need to go to their website to get a key code.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Jay

    Useful article. Detailed steps. Using PDF to Word converter software may be a good choice. I will try Cisdem PDF to Word Converter.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Dyson

    When the file is uploaded, it will be immediately uploaded to your Google Drive and right away opened for preview. Convert a PDF to a Word Document Step 25.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Ronald852

    PDF to word converter with OCR is so great! I had a complex scanned PDF file and I wanted to convert it to Word. This application is powerful, it retains all formats. Thanks for it.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • will

    I just went to zamzar and it is NOT free and the latest reader, Adobe Feader DC does NOT save as a .docx. It saves as txt.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Helga746

    Three ways to convert PDF to Word, and every way all are equipped with detailed steps to operate. Writer is so great!!! I used solution 2 as my PDF was OCR file. Its transition effects were great. I like it!!!

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Nora Osborne

    Useful article, writer recommended various methods to convert PDF to Word and very detailed steps. It is great. I will try.

    3 years ago REPLY