4 Ways to Make PDF Editable on MacBook or iMac

Megan Charles
time May 31, 2022 Preview 30.2K
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As a carrier of file, PDF usually includes plenty of information, but we all know, PDF, especially those scanned PDFs, cannot be easily edited to add text, modify or copy the text, etc., what do you do? It becomes critical to make PDF editable. There are many ways available for users to make a PDF editable on MacBook Pro, Air or iMac, and today, I collect 4 methods of making a PDF editable on mac, please read following parts for full details.

Method 1: Convert PDF to Editable Format on Mac

If you don’t want to spend quite some money on getting a PDF editor to make a PDF editable on mac, you can convert PDF into editable format with an affordable PDF Converter, then edit in your preferred file editor.

Cisdem PDF Converter OCR is highly recommended to convert your PDF(no matter it is native or scanned) and images, you just need to drag&drop one or more files into the program, then one-click export the PDF as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Text, Rtfd,HTML, or other editable format as it supports. The principal reason why I choose Cisdem PDF Converter OCR out from so many PDF converters lies in its capability to keep original file quality when converting PDF to other editable formats, also for the sake of its abundant extended features to manage PDF files, such as creating PDF, protect PDF, unlock PDF and compress PDF.

Now Make PDF Editable on Mac with Cisdem PDF Converter OCR

  • Step 1. Free download and launch Cisdem PDF Converter OCR on your Mac.
    You can click the “Free Download” button below to start downloading it. And then you need to launch it on your Mac.
    Free Download
  • Step 2. Upload PDF files to make PDF editable on mac.
    In the Converter interface, drag and drop your PDF file that you need to convert to editable format. Or you can click “+” button to add PDF. This application allows you to batch add as many PDF as you like.make pdf editable on mac  01
  • Step 3. Choose the editable output that you want to save the PDF as on mac.
    Choose page range and editable output format. Open the OCR function if you want to make a scanned PDF editable on mac.make pdf editable on mac 02
  • Step 4. Start to make PDF editable on mac.
    Just click “Convert” button to start, you will get the editable PDF within seconds, with nice formatting as original. 

Method 2: Make PDF Editable on Mac Free with Preview

Preview the free app coming with macOS bundle, it is offered to view and edit PDF or image files on Mac. You can utilize Preview to view, print, rotate, resize, rename, highlight, annotate, bookmark, share, export and edit PDFs. With the “Markup” toolbar, you can add sketch, shape, text, signature, note to a PDF. However, you cannot edit the PDF text, you need to white out the original PDF text, then add the new texts to replace. In addition, Preview cannot make a scanned PDF editable.

How to Make PDF Editable on Mac Free with Preview (Add New Texts)?

  1. Open PDF with Preview App.
  2. Click on following Markup toolbar.make pdf editable preview01
  3. Click on “T” icon to add a new text filed to a blank area of your PDF.make pdf editable preview02
  4. Click on “A” icon to change font style or size, input your texts.make pdf editable preview03

How to Make PDF Editable on Mac Free with Preview (Replace Old Texts)?

  1. Open PDF with Preview App.
  2. Click on Markup tool, then choose White color for both “border color” and “fill color”.make pdf editable preview4
  3. Draw a white rectangle shape to white out the texts you want to replace with new texts.make pdf editable preview6
  4. Then click on “T” to add a new text filed to the white out area and click “A” to change font settings.make pdf editable preview7
  5. Now your PDF becomes editable on Mac, you can edit the text or add other contents.

Method 3: Make PDF Editable on Mac Online Free

If you don’t work on PDF very often, neither you are working on highly private PDF files, you can try to make PDF editable online for free. Assuming you have a Google Account, you can make PDF editable with Google Docs, the platform Google helps to manage files online.

  1. Login into your Google Account>Google Drive.make pdf editable online01
  2. Click "New" >File Upload, import the PDF file that you want to make in editable format.make pdf editable online2
  3. Once uploaded, right click to "Open with Google Docs", if your PDFs are scanned copies, an OCR processing will start automatically.make pdf editable online03
  4. Your PDF will be opened in Google Docs and it becomes editable.
  5. After the editing, choose "File">"Download As" to choose the editable output format you want to save your PDF as.make pdf editable online04

Notes: The file quality (image resolution, format, layout, etc) may lost a little, remember to check and manually adjust for accurate editable file.

Method 4: If You Have Installed Adobe Acrobat

If you have installed Adobe, I mean the Adobe Acrobat, not Adobe Reader, you can make PDF editable on mac within this program. Adobe Acrobat is the No. 1 PDF editor , it can edit PDF texts easily and efficiently. No matter your PDF is native or scanned, once you import it to Adobe, it becomes editable and every single word in your PDF can be edited, modified, added or deleted.

Here we take Adobe Acrobat DC to demonstrate how to make PDF editable on mac.

  1. Open PDF with Adobe Acrobat DC.
  2. Go to Tools>Edit PDF, now you can edit PDF files on Mac.make pdf editable adobe01
  3. (Optional) For scanned PDFs, you can go to Tools>Enhance Scans>Recognize Text> in This File to make a image PDF editable on mac.make pdf editable adobe02
  4. After editing, save the file. Done! Of course, you can go to “File” and export PDF as other editable format if you want to.


Above-mentioned 4 ways to make PDF editable on mac are all feasible, which solution do you take depends on how much you care about the cost and conversion quality. If you have already installed Adobe, Adobe absolutely is the best choice, but if not, a OCR PDF converter to convert all kinds of PDFs into editable format on mac would be better than online free solutions when taking file safety and conversion quality into considerations.

Megan Charles
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Megan has an impressive deal of experience with Mac software and has the ability to explain tech stuff in a simplified, straightforward and easy to understand way.

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Comments (2) Leave a Reply

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  • Phil

    The PDF to Word converter sounds good, it is easy to further edit the file in Word.

    6 years ago Reply

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  • Jo

    Detailed steps to convert PDF to editable.

    7 years ago Reply

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