Converting PDFs to Word on Mac: What You Need to Know

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As the most common document type in the world, PDFs can be easily opened and shared on any device or operating system. However, editing them can be challenging without the right software. That’s when Word comes to the rescue. All you need to do is turn your file into DOC or DOCX format, make the necessary changes, and convert it back to PDF.

Luckily, users have several options to switch file formats. They can instantly convert PDF to Word on Mac online, download third-party software, or use built-in apps, like Preview and Pages, to complete the process. We’ll explore each option to help you choose the best one.

Convert PDF to Word DOCs Using Online Converters

Let’s start with the easiest and arguably most advantageous way to change file formats. The real advantage of dedicated online tools is their ability to convert various types of content with high accuracy.

Whether you are dealing with images, tables, graphs, or dense blocks of scanned text, the resulting Word file will preserve the original PDF formatting, making it easy to edit or share professionally.

Another advantage refers to the usability of such tools, as no efforts or skills are needed to get a grasp on their functionality. You will manage to convert PDF to Word in a couple of clicks – the steps are super easy:

  1. Open an online converter through any convenient browser.
  2. Upload your PDF into the dedicated area.
  3. Wait mere seconds while the document is processed.
  4. Download the resulting Word file on your device.

Some popular online converters, like PDF Guru, are also packed with a variety of handy features, allowing you to edit, e-sign, compress, organize PDFs, and much more. Take them to your advantage to ensure the highest file quality.

Turn a PDF into a Word DOC in Preview

Although the copy & paste approach may seem low-tech, it still works well when it comes to PDF conversion using Preview, especially if your file is only text-based. Otherwise, the process may be a bit tiresome – it all depends on the type of content you are willing to convert.

The point is that Preview cannot switch file formats directly, but you may use it to copy text from your PDFs and then save it as DOC or DOCX using Microsoft Word. These are the steps to change PDF to Word DOCs via Preview:

  1. Right-click your document and tap ‘Open with’ -> ‘Preview.’
  2. Highlight the needed text and hit ‘Command + C.’
  3. Open Microsoft Word and click ‘Command + V’ to paste the copied content.
  4. Save the document.

How to Open a PDF in Word Using Pages?

Similarly to Preview, Pages is a built-in app running on Mac and other Apple devices. This is a word processor that allows users to create nice-looking documents as well as read and extract text from PDF files.

Even though the app has enough power to turn a PDF into a Word DOC, a complex, graphics-rich layout may cause format distortion, so it’s better to use Pages for handling only text content. What’s more, any comments or smart annotations you have made will not appear in the exported document.

If this option meets your needs, do the following to change PDF to DOC on Mac using Pages:

  1. Open your PDF in Pages.
  2. Click ‘File’ from the top bar and pick ‘Export to’ -> ‘Word.’
  3. A new window will pop up, set a password if needed and tap ‘Next.’
  4. Enter the file name, choose a preferred storage location, and hit ‘Export.’

How to Convert PDF to DOCX on Mac via Microsoft Word?

This is another good option for converting PDFs on Mac if your files have simple formatting. If there is no Word installed on your device, you can purchase and download it from the official Microsoft website, either as a separate app or as a part of Microsoft 365.

Remember that Word alone requires 2.4GB of disk space and additional storage for updates, so ensure your Mac has enough capacity to accommodate it. Once you download the app, these guidelines will help you convert PDF to Word:

  1. Run Microsoft Word, head to ‘File,’ and tap ‘Open.’
  2. Upload your PDF file.
  3. You will see a warning notifying you that the converted document may not retain its original look. Click ‘OK’ to continue.
  4. The file format will be changed to DOCX; if you are happy with its appearance, save the file.

Convert PDF to Word through Google Docs

If you have a Google account, you can convert PDF to Word using Google Docs as well.The process is pretty simple and does not require you to download any additional software on your Mac. Please note that if your document contains images, Google Docs may remove them from the resulting file, so the option is preferable for simple, text-based PDFs.

  1. Open Google Drive and sign in.
  2. Upload your PDF by clicking ‘New’ -> ‘File upload.’
  3. Open the document and tap on the ‘File’ menu.
  4. Choose ‘Download’ -> Microsoft Word (DOCX).

Final Thoughts

So which route to choose when changing PDF to Word DOCs? It’s actually a matter of personal needs and preferences. Build-in tools, Google Docs, and Microsoft Word may serve you well for converting plain text files, but if you are dealing with complex formatting and graphics-rich content, online converters are your way to go. Anyway, keep this guide in mind to make the best choice.

Claire S. Allen
Claire S. Allen
Hi there! I'm Claire S. Allen, a vibrant Gemini who's as bold as my favorite color, red. I'm a fan of two cool things: strolling the streets in a red jacket and crafting articles that connect with readers. With my warm and friendly personality, Claire is sure to brighten up your day!
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