How to Retain PDF Formatting When Converting it to Word

By Amy Dombrower

The Portable Document Format (PDF) is the file type used to preserve the formatting of nearly any file and making it possible to send a document electronically for anyone to view. PDFs are created, edited and often viewed in Adobe Acrobat. Aside from formatting PDFs, Acrobat also will let you convert files to other types, including Word documents and Rich Text Format files. You must select the proper settings if you want to preserve the PDF formatting before converting to Word.

Things You'll Need

  • Adobe Acrobat
  • Microsoft Word

Step 1

Open a PDF file in Adobe Acrobat.

Step 2

Click "File." Select "Export."

Step 3

Choose "Microsoft Word Document" as the text format.

Step 4

Click "Settings."

Step 5

Make changes in "Layout Settings." The type of formatting you choose to retain will depend on the nature of the PDF document. Click "Retain Flowing Text" to preserve the text flow, but not the layout. Choose this option if you have multiple columns and you want to retain the flow of the text. Click "Retain Page Layout" to retain the layout of the document.

Step 6

Make any other settings changes as needed. Choose whether to include comment and images. Click "OK." Click "Save" to save the file as a Word document.

Step 7

Open the file in Microsoft Word.