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Compress PDF to a Chosen Size Online

by Hung Nguyen

You can also read this article in German, Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese.

Reduce your PDF file to your desired size using Smallpdf’s online compression tool.

Smallpdf is the most popular online compression tool for PDF documents. Because of rising demand, we now offer two different modes to help you with this task.

How to Compress a PDF to a Chosen Size

  1. Open up the ‘Compress PDF’ online tool.

  2. Drag and drop your PDF into the toolbox.

  3. Choose ‘Basic compression’ or ‘Strong compression’. We’ll also show an estimation of the compression rates here.

  4. Hit ‘Choose option’ to compress your document.

  5. Download your PDF.

Compress any PDF to a chosen size tutorial

Compress your PDF in a few clicks, to any size you like.

Please note that the rates displayed are only estimations. The rate at which we can reduce a PDF file size depends on the content of the original document, i.e., whether the file contains images or is text-based.

Basic compression will reduce the file size significantly, without damaging the image quality and losing the quality of the stored data. On the other hand, when you compress PDF files using the stronger mode, the increase in compression may also result in some loss of quality of the stored data. For instance, images may become blurry. Because of this, please only use the latter option when you must get your file to a certain size, e.g., for online compression–where there is a file cap.

Compression options of Smallpdf

The two available compression options of Smallpdf.

Is This Online PDF Compression Tool Free?


The standard mode of compression is accessible for anyone, without cost. Once the file is uploaded, you have 17 other tools on our website where you can further edit your PDF. The strong compression mode, however, requires you to have a Pro subscription to use.

You can check out the cost and benefits of having an account via the sign-up page on our site. Smallpdf also offers a two-week free trial for those who wish to test the tools out before purchasing. As you fiddle with our product, it’s important to review the output file and see which rate of compression is most fitting to your demands.

Compress More Than Just PDFs


Other than the PDF compressor, you can also select files of different formats and still accomplish the same task. Via our homepage (which is available on any web browser) are numerous file converters, e.g., Word to PDF. To reduce the size of other file types, convert the file first to PDF format, click ‘Compress PDF’ on the result page, and then save the file back to its original format.

These tools are all available for you to use without an account, any installation, or the need to even enter an email address. Once you compress a large PDF file to your chosen size, you can freely share, email, or even export it to Google Drive or Dropbox. Smaller files are convenient for local storage.

Coming up–the Smallpdf team is hard at work to bring even more compression rates to you, i.e. light compression for those who don’t need a significant reduction in their file size. If you have any suggestions, feel free to pop us an email via our support page.

Hung Nguyen
Hung Nguyen
Content Marketing Manager