3 Methods to Edit A Scanned Document on MacOS and Windows

Rosa Reyes
time May 14, 2020 Preview 9.3K
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As the awareness of creating a paperless office increases among more and more people, scanned documents (basically scanned PDF files and image) has become a great part of our paper work in office. Yet, very often, we need to edit a scanned document to make changes. Here are multiple solutions to edit a scanned PDF or image document on MacOS and Windows respectively.

The Easiest---Edit a Scanned Document with PDF Converter

A PDF editor seems to be the only solution on this issue. But in fact, most of users finally choose to edit the scanned PDF or image document without paying for a PDF editor that is priced quite high. The easiest way to edit a scanned PDF or image document, for many users, is exporting the scanned file as an editable format, then edit the file in its corresponding document editor. 

So if you don’t have a PDF editor, or don’t want to invest too much money on edit a scanned document. You can wisely make use of PDF converters to make scanned documents editable for further modifications.

For Mac Users

Cisdem PDF Converter OCR, a dedicated PDF converter for mac with OCR capability, to convert native, scanned PDF and images to 16 formats, while maintaining the original file quality (layout, format, image quality, etc). Differing from those PDF editors, Cisdem PDF Converter OCR can make scanned documents editable in batch and in abundant output formats. Even, its built-in creator allows users to create PDF from other files, and customize the PDF size & quality as needed.


Steps to Edit Scanned PDF or Image Document on Mac

Step 1Download and install Cisdem PDF Converter OCR.

Free Download

Step 2Import scanned PDF or image document into the program.

Once you have installed and launched the PDF converter on your mac, go to "Converter", drag and drop the scanned documents in PDF or click “+” to add single or multiple scanned files into the program.

edit scanned document on mac 01

Step 3Make the scanned PDF or image document editable on mac.

Turn the OCR function ON, select page range and language. Choose the output as Word or any other supported editable formats. Finally click “Convert” to make the scanned document editable.

edit scanned document on mac 02

Step 4Edit scanned document on mac.

If you have exported the scanned file as Word, open with Office and edit the scanned document on your mac now.

For Windows Users

There are also several PDF converters for Windows, and here we recommend PDFMate PDF Converter Professional, a comprehensive PDF conversion tool to convert native and scanned PDF into Excel, Word, Text, ePub, Image, etc. It can also work as PDF splitter and merger, manager. 

Steps to Edit Scanned Document on Windows

  1. Add scanned PDF document to PDFMate.
    Once a scanned document is uploaded to PDFMate, following prompt will appear for you to enable OCR to convert scanned PDFs. Just check the box and click OK.edit scanned document with windows pdf converter 01
  2. Convert scanned PDF document for editing.
    Choose the output format and click ‘Convert” to make scanned documents editable. If needed, enable the merger function ON to merge all these scanned documents.edit scanned document with windows pdf converter 02
  3. Edit scanned document on Windows.
    Once the conversion is done, open the file in its supported editor to edit the scanned document.

Edit a Scanned Document with PDF Editor

As we all know, nearly all scanned documents are saved in PDF format because of its capability to retain and present original file elements, to be easily accessed on different platforms as well. Assuming you are working with PDF on a regular basis, you probably got a PDF editor installed. And most of PDF editors build in OCR features to edit a scanned PDF document directly. Here we recommended 2 tools.

Edit a Scanned PDF Document on Mac

When talking about PDF editor, is that Adobe product the one first comes to your head? Then, you can absolutely edit a scanned document on mac with Adobe.Here we use subscribed Adobe Acrobat DC(price at $14.99/month), the latest Adobe Acrobat version to demonstrate how to edit a scanned document on mac.

Steps to Edit Scanned PDF Document on Mac with Adobe

  1. Open PDF with Acrobat Acrobat DCedit scanned document with adobe 01
  2. Go to "Edit PDF" on the right panel.
    Adobe will automatically perform OCR on the scanned document. The scanned document is editable now, go to toolbars to add text or image, or any other editing actions. To edit a specified part, click on the part and a text field appears for editing.edit scanned document with adobe 02
  3. Once all the editing on the scanned document has done, go to file and save. 

Edit a Scanned PDF Document on Windows

Adobe Acrobat DC also gets the Windows version for users. But here we recommend another PDF editor to edit a scanned document on Windows, ABLE2EXTRACT PROFESSIONAL 11(price at $149.95). 

It is an all-in-one PDF editor, allowing users to convert native and scanned to Word, Excel, CSV, AutoCAD, etc, to annotate, to redact and edit PDF content. 

Steps to Edit A Sscanned PDF Document on Windows 

  1. Open scanned PDF with ABLE2EXTRACT PROFESSIONAL 11.edit scanned document with windows pdf editor 01
  2.  Go to “Edit”. The edit panel is on the right side. Click on the text to edit as you want to.edit scanned document with windows pdf editor 02
  3.  Once editing finishes, click “Convert” to go back to the normal mode and go to  “File” to save or export your PDF. 

Edit a Scanned Document Online Free

If you don’t work on scanned documents that often, you can use online free OCR software to save the money. The principle of using online free service is similar to that of PDF converter, do ocr on the scanned document to make them editable. The biggest benefit of using online service is that you can utilize this method both on MacOS and Windows.

Here we recommended OnlineOCR, a platform enabling users to make scanned PDF and image document in editable Word, Excel, Text format. It is simple to use and preserves the original PDF formatting well.

Steps to Edit Scanned Document on Mac or Windows Online Free

  1. Go to OnlineOCR.
  2. Follow the instruction on the website.edit scanned document online
  3. Download the editable file and edit this original scanned document in the supported file editor.


  • Do not upload highly private file for conversion, in case of information leakage
  • Do not upload file exceeding 5 MB
  • Manually adjust the file due to suspected OCR errors


As for myself, I would like to turn to PDF Converter for help. PDF Editor always costs a lot, still gets limited output formats, while online OCR service may get you nowhere because of unstable conversion quality. However, a OCR PDF Converter for Mac or for Windows will enable scanned documents to be different editable formats, and you can edit a scanned document as you want to.

Rosa Reyes
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Rosa has worked in Mac software industry for more than eight years. She believes that the purpose of software is to make life better and work more productively. In addition to writing, Rosa is also an avid runner.

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