6 Ways to Scan Document to Excel with OCR

Carolyn Ryan
May 31, 2023 Preview 18.0K Preview 0
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Is there a way to scan a document into Excel? With the pervasiveness of digital devices that carry a camera, it is very easy for us to scan a document, and with OCR, the technology to create editable/searchable data from image-based scans, we will be able to scan to Excel.

Here in this guide, we will dive into 6 ways to scan documents into Excel with OCR, so to archive our paper files as portable digital spreadsheets easily.

#1 The Easiest Way to Scan to Excel Spreadsheet on Mac and Windows

It is super simple and easy to scan a document before OCR process, using nothing more than the camera on your mobile phone or computer. The essential part of scanning to Excel is to find a great tool with OCR capability, but there is no need to invest in expensive OCR software, because we have Cisdem PDF Converter OCR for you.

Cisdem PDF Converter OCR is a Windows/Mac program to turn PDF scans and images into Excel, Word, PowerPoint, ePub, HTML, RTFD and searchable PDF with original formatting retained. It also enables users to scan documents to Excel in batches. When scanning document to Excel in Cisdem, users can combine all pages into a single Excel sheet if want to.

Why Cisdem PDF Converter OCR?

  • Turn scans in PDF and Image to Excel, Word, PowerPoint and other editable formats
  • Highly maintain original file formatting
  • Advanced output settings
  • Recognize multiple file languages
  • Convert native PDF to 15+ formats
  • Create and compress PDFs

How to Scan to Excel with OCR in Cisdem?

  1. Capture the printed files and save them in scanned PDF or Image.
  2. Download and install Cisdem PDF Converter OCR onto your PC or Mac.
    Free Download Free Download
  3. Launch the program, drag and drop scans into the program.scan to excel cisdem01
  4. Cisdem will auto detect the scan file and enable OCR when converting. You need to choose page range, select file language and set output format as XLSX.scan to excel cisdem02
  5. Click Settings button to customize the Excel output, then click OK.scan to excel cisdem03
  6. Click Convert button to scan your documents into Excel. The status bar will indicate a complete OCR process, check the Excel output then.

#2 Scan to Excel in Adobe Acrobat If You Have

For users who have installed Adobe Acrobat, Adobe offers a comprehensive solution to scan, OCR, edit and convert your documents. It allows to users to create scans from files in the scanner, then OCR to Excel spreadsheet. You can use this method to scan to Excel both on Mac or Windows, since Adobe offers both versions.

The greatest benefit of using Adobe Acrobat to scan to Excel is capability to edit the file in Adobe before OCR to Excel, also, it allows users to fix OCR errors smartly, which will substantially save your time and effort to work on the scans.

How to Scan to Excel with Adobe Acrobat?

  1. Run Adobe Acrobat, connect scanner to your Mac or Windows PC.
  2. Go to Tools>Create PDF>Scanner.scan to excel adobe01
  3. Then OCR the scans by going to Tools>Scan & OCR>Recognize Text.scan to excel adobe 02
  4. Once ready, go to Tools>Export PDF, choose Spreadsheet as the output format.scan to excel adobe03

#3 Scan to Excel with ABBYY FineReader

If you are looking for an Adobe Acrobat alternative to scan to Excel, ABBYY FineReader PDF 16 is worth a try, it is as powerful as Adobe Acrobat, but gives a better performance on OCR files with a lower price (Standard Version priced at $99 for one year). It supports scanning, editing, protecting, collaborating, creating, converting and doing OCR on PDF files.

Also it supports more output formats than Adobe, including PDF, PDF/A, DOCX, RTF,  XLSX, PPTX, ODT, HTML, TXT, CSV, EPUB, FB2.

How to Scan to Excel with ABBYY FineReader?

  1. Download and install ABBYY FineReader 16 to your computer, connect the scanner to your computer.
  2. Run the program, go to Quick conversion> Continuity Camera>Import from iPhone or iPad>Scan Documents to import the scan.scan to excel abbyy01
  3. Then go to Recognize, revise or edit the file if needed, then select OCR Language.scan to excel abbyy02
  4. Choose output as XLSX, you will be able to scan document to Excel with ABBYY FineReader.scan to excel abbyy03

#4 Scan to Excel with Freeware

Actually, there is a free method to scan to excel offline, using Microsoft OneNote. It is note-taking program available on macOS, Windows, Android and iOS, it builds in the OCR feature, allowing users to copy and paste texts from image or screenshot. Though it doesn’t allow exporting scans as Excel directly, its copying & pasting feature won't disappoint you.

However, you should be aware of that, OneNote OCR doesn’t maintain formatting, if you want to scan well-formatted documents to Excel, OneNote is not recommended to you, just try other solutions.

How to Scan to Excel for Free with Microsoft OneNote?

  1. Download and install Microsoft OneNote to your Mac or Windows PC, connect the scanner to your computer if you have one.
  2. Run the program, go to Insert>Pictures>From Scanner or Camera, import the scans.scan to excel onenote01
  3. Once the scanned image is displayed in Microsoft OneNote, right click on the picture to choose “Copy Text from Picture”.scan to excel onenote02
  4. Then paste the text to a Excel spreadsheet. Done.

#5 Scan to Excel Online Free

You can also scan documents into Excel with online free OCR tools, but you will need to create scans from paper files using your mobile device camera first, then prepare the scans in image format and upload online for OCR. Here we recommend scanning to Excel with Online2PDF, it is great platform to create, convert, merge, split, edit, compress, protect and unlock PDF for free. With its OCR feature, users can convert scanned documents to Excel, Word, PowerPoint, searchable PDF, Text and ePub format. It supports batch OCR too.

However, the formatting won't be fully maintained in the Excel output, you need to check and manually revise to make sure there is no OCR errors or formatting mess.

How to Scan to Excel Online Free?

  1. Scan documents with a camera, save the files in image format and transfer to your computer.
  2. Go to Online2PDF.
  3. Upload scans to the program.
  4. Choose output as Excel and select OCR feature. Also, choose the file language.
  5. Then click Convert to scan to Excel.
  6. Finally, download the editable Excel spreadsheet to your computer and manually revise if necessary.scan to excel online free

Best Scan to Excel App 2023

Or you can scan documents and import the recognized data in Excel app on your Android or iOS smartphone, as long as you have installed Microsoft Office.

Microsoft Office runs as an app on your mobile device, it uses the smartphone’s camera to catch a copy of the document, then import and convert it into Excel spreadsheet. When scanning, you can preview the file and optimize it for accurate OCR. The biggest benefits of using Microsoft Office app is its close integration with MS’s other apps.

How to Scan to Excel on Android or iPhone?

  1. Tap Microsoft Office app and open the app.
  2. Tap "+" and choose Excel to create a new spreadsheet.scan to excel app01
  3. Tap “Scan table” and use your phone’s camera to capture the table file.scan to excel app02
  4. Import the scan and let Microsoft Office app auto OCR the file, you can revise the errors if any.
  5. The file will be scanned into Excel, you can edit and save the Excel file on your mobile device.scan to excel app03


Today, it is not required to scan files with a scanner, you can use your camera or mobile device to create scans. And it become quite easier to scan to Excel, as long as you have found a professional OCR program to turn digitized scans to editable Excel format, just like Cisdem PDF Converter OCR, ABBYY FineReader. Both of them bring highly accurate OCR result, also enable users to convert scans to various output formats that you use very often.

Carolyn Ryan
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Carolyn has always been passionate about reading and writing, so she joined Cisdem as an editor as soon as she graduated from university. She focuses on writing how-to articles about PDF editing and conversion.

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