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How to save a Word file as a PDF

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One of the more popular file formats used by businesses is the PDF (Portable Document Format).

Download documents, brochures or other content online and chances are high they will be saved to your computer as PDFs. This file type is so popular largely because it saves the document’s format and layout, making it accessible and readable on nearly any system. If you use Microsoft Word, do you know how to save a document as a PDF?

Here’s how you can save Microsoft Word 2010 and 2013 documents as PDFs.

Saving a Word 2010 document as a PDF

  1. Create and format the document as you would like the reader to see it if it were to be printed.
  2. Click File followed by Save As.
  3. Enter a name for the file in the Filename box. Be sure the name is easy to read and understandable. A bunch of numbers and unintelligible words will likely decrease the chances of the file being opened, or passing spam filters if emailed.
  4. Click on Save as type and select PDF.
  5. Select either Standard (for print and publishing online) or Minimum (for publishing online).
  6. Click Save.

Saving a Word 2013 document as a PDF

  1. Create and format the document as you would like the reader to see it if it were to be printed.
  2. Click File followed by Export.
  3. Select Create PDF/XPS from the menu that opens.
  4. Click Publish.

Word will create a PDF copy of the Word document and by default, save it to the same file the document is in.

Things to remember when creating PDFs
Here are three important things to remember when creating PDFs in Word:

  • They are not meant to be edited. Because PDFs capture the formatting and layout of a document, they are often seen to be the final versions. As such, they are fairly hard to edit. It is better to ensure that the document is exactly what you want and error free before creating a PDF.
  • The simplest way to edit. The easiest way to edit a PDF is to actually edit the original Word document and then re-save it as a PDF. You can even use the same name, just confirm that you would like to replace the existing file. If this file has been uploaded to a website, you may want to re-upload it to ensure the correct version is online.
  • You can open PDFs and convert them to Word documents. To do this in Word 2013 select File, Open and select the PDF you would like to open. This should convert the document and open it with all images and content. Beware that formatting may be off or inconsistent and will likely need some work to make it readable or presentable.
  • Be sure to open and check the PDF before sending. Take a look for any formatting issues or problems with spacing and layout. The file should look exactly the same as the Word document.

If you are looking to learn more about using Microsoft Office in your company, please contact us today to see how we can help, or if we have a solution for you.

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