How to Convert PDF to Google Doc: A Step-by-Step Guide

Converting a PDF to a Google Doc is a straightforward process. Simply upload the PDF file to Google Drive, right-click it, and open it with Google Docs. The PDF file will be converted to a Google Doc format and you can edit and save changes as needed.

After completing this action, the PDF file will be transformed into an editable Google Docs document. You can then work on it just like any other document created in Google Docs, including adding text, images, tables, and other formatting changes.


Ever found yourself in a situation where you’ve got a PDF document, and you need to do some quick editing, but you don’t have access to a PDF editor? Or maybe you’re working collaboratively with others, and you need to convert that PDF into a format that’s easier to manage and share. That’s where the ability to convert a PDF to a Google Doc comes in handy!

Google Docs is a versatile and widely-used platform for creating and sharing documents online. It allows multiple users to collaborate in real-time, making it an essential tool for both personal and professional use. Knowing how to convert a PDF file into a Google Doc can save you time and hassle, especially when you need to make quick edits or share the file with others who prefer using Google’s suite of productivity tools. So whether you’re a student, a business professional, or just someone looking to streamline their workflow, this skill is for you!

Step by Step Tutorial to Convert PDF to Google Doc

Before we get started, make sure you have a Google account and access to Google Drive. This tutorial will guide you through the steps to convert your PDF to a Google Doc successfully.

Step 1: Upload your PDF to Google Drive

Open Google Drive and click on the ‘New’ button to upload your PDF file.

Uploading your PDF to Google Drive is the first step in the conversion process. Make sure the PDF file is saved on your computer or accessible from your device. Once uploaded, the PDF will be stored in your Drive, ready for the next step.

Step 2: Open with Google Docs

Right-click on the uploaded PDF and select ‘Open with’ then choose ‘Google Docs’.

When you open the PDF with Google Docs, Google’s built-in OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software will automatically begin converting the text in the PDF into an editable Google Docs format. This process may take a few minutes, depending on the length and complexity of the PDF.

Step 3: Edit and Save your Google Doc

Once the PDF is converted, you can edit the text, format the document, and save changes as needed.

Editing your new Google Doc is just like editing any other document in Google Docs. You can make changes to the text, add or remove images, and adjust the formatting to suit your needs. Be sure to save your changes so you don’t lose any of your work.


Easy to UseConverting a PDF to a Google Doc is user-friendly and doesn’t require any specialized software.
Editable FormatOnce converted, the Google Doc is fully editable, allowing you to make any necessary changes to the document.
CollaborationGoogle Docs facilitates real-time collaboration, making it easy to share and work on documents with others.

Converting a PDF to a Google Doc is a breeze for anyone with basic computer skills. It’s a process that can be completed in just a few clicks, and it doesn’t require any technical know-how or expensive software.

Once you’ve converted your PDF to a Google Doc, you’ll be able to edit it just like any other document. This is incredibly useful if you need to update figures, correct typos, or make other modifications without having to go through the hassle of converting the document back to a PDF later.

Collaboration is one of the biggest selling points of Google Docs. By converting your PDF to a Google Doc, you’re making it easier for others to work on the document with you. This is especially helpful for team projects, where multiple people need to provide input or make edits.


Formatting IssuesConversion may not always maintain the original formatting of the PDF, which can be time-consuming to correct.
Limited ConversionNot all elements (like certain images or tables) may convert perfectly, requiring manual adjustments.
OCR LimitationsThe OCR technology may not accurately recognize text within images or heavily formatted areas in the PDF.

One common issue that users may encounter is formatting inconsistencies after the conversion. The layout or design of the original PDF may not be retained, which could result in extra work to reformat the Google Doc to match the original document.

Not all elements of a PDF will convert seamlessly to a Google Doc. Complex images, tables, or other graphic elements may not appear as intended, and you might need to adjust or recreate these manually in the Google Doc.

OCR technology has greatly improved, but it’s not failproof. If your PDF contains a lot of text within images or has intricate formatting, the conversion to editable text might not be accurate, and you could end up with a jumbled or incomplete document.

Additional Information

While converting a PDF to a Google Doc is generally a simple process, there are a few additional tips that can help ensure a smooth experience. First, if your PDF is scanned or contains a lot of images, the quality of the text recognition may vary. It’s a good idea to review the converted document for any inaccuracies or missing text.

It’s also worth noting that while Google Docs is a powerful tool, it may not have all the advanced formatting options that a dedicated PDF editor offers. So, if you’re working with a particularly complex PDF, you might still need to use specialized software for certain tasks.

Finally, remember that the privacy settings of your Google Docs are important, especially if you’re dealing with sensitive information. Ensure that you adjust the sharing settings appropriately to keep your document secure.


  1. Upload your PDF to Google Drive.
  2. Right-click the PDF and open with Google Docs.
  3. Edit and save your Google Doc as needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I convert a PDF to a Google Doc on my mobile device?

Yes, you can convert a PDF to a Google Doc using the Google Drive app on your mobile device by following the same steps as on a desktop.

Will the converted Google Doc be an exact replica of the PDF?

Not always. The conversion process may not preserve complex formatting or images, so some manual adjustments may be necessary.

Is there a file size limit for converting a PDF to a Google Doc?

Google Drive has a file size limit for uploads, which may affect the ability to convert larger PDFs. Check Google’s current guidelines for specific size limitations.

Can I convert a password-protected PDF to a Google Doc?

No, you’ll need to remove the password protection from the PDF before attempting to convert it to a Google Doc.

What if the text in my PDF is not in English?

Google Docs can convert PDFs in multiple languages. However, the accuracy of the OCR may vary for languages with complex characters or scripts.


Converting a PDF to a Google Doc is a skill that can significantly improve your productivity and collaboration. Whether you’re a student, a professional, or someone who just wants to streamline their digital workflow, understanding how to perform this conversion is a valuable asset.

Remember, while the process is generally straightforward, you may encounter some hiccups with formatting or OCR accuracy. But don’t let that discourage you – with a little patience and some fine-tuning, you’ll be converting PDFs like a pro in no time. So go ahead, give it a try, and unlock the full potential of your digital documents!

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