If you try to insert a .PDF file into a Word document, it will display just fine if the PDF is a single page. However, if the PDF contains multiple pages, only the first will be visible in your Word document. You may wonder if there is a way to display a multi-page PDF in a Word document. The good news is yes, I think so.
Follow the steps below to learn how:
Inserting a PDF File
Follow the steps below to learn the general method to insert a .PDF files into your document:
- Display the Insert tab of your Ribbon.
- Near the right side of your Ribbon, click the Object tool. This tool is in the Text group. Word will display the Object dialog box.
- Be certain the Create from File tab is selected.
- Click Browse and Word will display the dialog box.
- Use the controls in the dialog box to locate and select the .PDF file you would like to insert.
- Click Insert. Word will close the Open dialog box and, in the Object dialog box, will show the full path to the PDF file you would like to insert.
- Click OK.
Nowt, one of three things is going to happen. First, you could you end up with a blah icon in your document or second, a single page of your PDF will be inserted in your document. Third, all the pages of your PDF file will be inserted in your document. See below to look at each of these possibilities.
A Bland Icon is Inserted
When you try to insert a PDF file in your document, you may only see a simple object icon, like the following.
If this is the case, you are out of luck when it comes to inserting a PDF file directly. Why? Because Word has no idea how to handle the PDF file. It seems that you need to have a PDF program (such as Adobe Acrobat or Acrobat Reader) installed on your system in order for Word to be able to extract anything from the PDF and display it.
You can actually tell, previously, if you are going to be able to successfully insert anything from a PDF file. Remember when you displayed the Object dialog box and you displayed the Create from File tab above? If you had, instead, displayed the Create New tab, you would have noticed a nice, scrollable list of object types that Word understands. If you do not see an object type listed for PDF files, then Word does not know how to open and display PDF files in your documents, and you are stuck with the above bland icon.
Seems odd doesn’t it? You see, even if Word does not know (by default) how to display PDF files in a document, it knows how to create PDF files from you document. Also, beginning with version 2013,Word knows how to make a stab at opening a PDF document and converting it into a Word document. ) It also knows how to display PDF files, by default, in the Edge browser. Yet, it cannot, by default, display a PDF file in your Word document. Yes, odd!
The bottom line is that if you see the bland icon, you are sort of out of luck. Not only can you not display a multi-page .PDF file, but you cannot even display a single-page .PDF file.
A Single Page is Inserted
When you try to insert a. PDF file into your document, you may only see a single page from that document. This is particularly true if you are using version 2007 or 2010 but may also apply if you are using a later version of the program. If you know that the .PDF file has multiple pages, you should delete the single page you just inserted and use a workaround. This is necessary because you have just discovered that your version of Word is incapable of displaying more than the first page of a multi-page .PDF.
If you are using version 2013 or a later version, you can convert the .PDF file to a document and thereafter copy and paste the information you want to use. If you want to go this route, keep on reading.
If you want to keep the formatting on the inserted pages looking exactly like it was in the .PDF or you do not want people to be able to change what is in the .PDF, you can convert the .PDF file into images. This is not done in Word, but in an actual .PDF program—choose to export the PDF file to images, and you will then end up with a single .PDF for each page in the .PDF file. You can then insert these images into your Word document and size them as you like.
Another approach is the idea of splitting your .PDF file into multiple PDF files. If, for instance, you have a five-page .PDF file, you could use your .PDF program to break it apart into five separate one-page .PDF files. These could then be inserted individually into your Word document.
All the Pages are Inserted
In the very latest versions of Word it may be possible to insert all of the pages of a multi-page .PDF file. From testing, it appears this is only possible in either Word 2019 or the version of Word included with Office 365. It also seems to be contingent on the capabilities of the .PDF program you have installed on your system.
We have not been able to track down the exact combination of programs that are reproducible for being able to consistently insert a multi-page .PDF.
Converting a .PDF File to a Document
Beginning with Word 2013, you can actually open a .PDF file in Word and the program will make a grand effort at converting the .PDF to a document. All you need do is to display the Open dialog box, locate and select the .PDF file, and then click the Open button to display a dialog box to inform you it is doing a conversion.
Click OK and the conversion will be performed. You can then work with the document as you would any other Word document. You cannot click the Save button, though, and expect the .PDF file to be updated—once it is converted to a document, it is thereafter treated as a document. The original .PDF is not modified in any way, and you can save the converted document as a regular document or you can print the document out to a PDF format as you would for any other Word document.
The end result of this is that if you want to insert a multi-page .PDF file into a Word document, you could open the .PDF file in Word (which does the conversion) and then copy the text from that converted document and paste it into the document where you would like it to appear.
It should be noted that the conversion process done by Word is passable, but not optimum. You will lose some formatting and it is possible you could lose some of your content. If you want a better conversion, you should consider opening the .PDF in Acrobat and exporting it to a Word document.