Just because your coworker sent you a PDF file instead of the Excel document you wanted, that doesn’t mean you’re actually stuck with it. In this guide, we’ll teach you how to convert a PDF into an Excel document using a few quick and easy steps. We’ll even teach you a few different ways to do it.
If you don’t want to go to the trouble of converting the PDF (whether password-protected or not) and would rather just edit it as is, we have a guide to the best PDF editors, too.
Using Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
As one of the world’s premier PDF reading and editing applications, Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is one of the more popular methods for converting a PDF into an Excel file. As fully featured as it is, though, it is a paid-for, premium application. Fortunately, there is a free trial, so if you’re just looking to do a one-off conversion, this method works great.
Step 1: Download Adobe Acrobat Pro DC’s seven-day trial and install it.
Step 2: Open the software, and select the Tools tab.
Step 3: Click the Export PDF icon. (You can also select the Export PDF icon in the pane on the right side without having to go through the Tools tab.)
Step 4: Click Select a File and choose the PDF you want to convert from the resulting window. Then, select Spreadsheet from the list of export options and decide whether you want a Microsoft Excel Workbook (.xlsx) or XML Spreadsheet 2003 (.xml) format.
Step 5: If you want to adjust your eventual Excel document’s settings, click the Gear icon on the right-hand side of your selection. You can choose how many worksheets are created, as well as what symbols are used as data separators.
Step 6: When happy with your settings, click the blue Export button.
Step 7: Decide where you want to save your new Excel document. Either pick one of the Recent Folders on show, or click the blue Choose a Different Folder button. In the resulting pop-up file browser, click Save.
Depending on the complexity of your data set and the speed of your computer, you may have a short wait while the conversion takes place. Once completed, the new Excel document will automatically open. You have now officially converted your PDF to an Excel document.
Using a free web application
We get it, these programs don’t work for everyone. There are many reasons that you can’t install these applications on your system, or maybe you would simply prefer that a remote server handle the brunt of the work for you. That’s okay, there are other methods you can use to convert those files.
You always have the option to convert a PDF to an Excel document online instead. Although there are a number of online converters to choose from, we have a favorite. We strongly recommend PDFtoExcel.com because it’s free, has a clean, user-friendly interface, and does an excellent job quickly.
We recommend caution if you use PDFtoExcel.com. While the company has said they promptly delete all data received within six hours after upload and that your files are “accessed only by automated software agents,” it’s better to exert some concern when it comes to your privacy rights. If you are converting essential or private data, it’s best to use a local conversion option as this is the safest protocol. Local conversion methods are best for converting personal, sensitive, or otherwise private information as they ensure the most protection.
With PDFtoExcel.com, you are in good hands because their efficient conversion method is an easy three-step process we have laid out below.
Step 1: Open a browser window and go to PDFtoExcel.com.
Step 2: Click the Upload button and select the PDF you want to convert. Alternatively, you can drag and drop it onto the designated area.
Step 3: If you are working with an extensive PDF and/or data set, uploading the file and converting it may take a little while, but overall, the process should be swift. Once complete, click the Free Download button.
After the final step, your PDF file will be in an Excel format that you can download or edit. This document may require tweaking or formatting. We recommend checking out our helpful guide on how to operate Excel through the Microsoft Office app, where we outline handy Excel tips and tricks.