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PDF Scanner - Convert Scanned PDF Online

by Hung Nguyen

You can also read this article in Spanish.

Our latest product spotlight will shed light on how our PDF scanner can convert scanned PDF files to editable formats, such as Word and Excel.

Have you ever tried to convert a PDF to Word and all you got was an image placed onto the Word file? This result occurs because the PDF scanner did not have access to OCR (Optical character recognition) technology to extract and save the content of your PDF file into an editable form.

Lucky for you, we do! Our newly improved PDF scanner will magically reconstruct your scanned PDF files to various editable formats, such as Word documents or even Excel sheets (thanks to the inclusion of a recent release of our very own OCR scanner app a few months back).

PDF Scanner Made Easy


Follow the instructions below to utilize our free, easy-to-use and powerful PDF scanner efficiently.

  • Access the all-in-one PDF Scanner via our homepage.

  • Upload your scanned document.

  • Click whether you wish to convert the file to Word or Excel.

  • Let Smallpdf do the work. Though it might take a few extra seconds, we ensure that the layout of the output remains as close to the original file as possible.

  • Pro Tip 1: Our PDF Scanner also works not just for scanned documents, but anything that requires the recognition of text!

  • Pro Tip 2: Automation is the key for a productive workflow, especially in the current digital age. Because of this, you don't even have to worry about whether you are processing a scanned document or not. Our PDF scanner will automatically detect scanned files and activate our OCR scanner app to take care of the job. When this happens, you will see the message below to notify you of the reconstruction process.


PDF Scanner working its magic!

Most Popular Online PDF Scanner


You read correctly! Smallpdf boasts a user base of over 18 million users on our website every month, using our 18 tools - including the PDF scanner.

Smallpdf operates on the cloud. Because of this, you can access our site on any browser and operating systems, such as Mac, Linux, and Windows. We also have an offline PDF software to convert your files offline.

Your file safety is also one of our top concerns. As such, we adopt secure SSL connections for all file transfers, and your documents are always erased an hour after the conversion process. For more information, check out our Privacy and Terms page.

A few of our other useful tools that can help you manage your scans include:

  • Compress - reduce scanned documents to an email-ready size.

  • Merge - did you scan many documents? Combine them.

  • Protect - place a password onto your PDF.

  • Split - extract data from scanned files into one or multiple files.

  • eSign - did you scan a contract to sign electronically? We've got you covered. If you need help on how to create, sign and request electronic signatures, we've written a step-by-step tutorial on this as well.

Here's to realizing the dream of a paperless office!

We hope you enjoy using our PDF scanner app. The journey does not stop here, though. As there are billions of PDF files stored online, we aim to work on improving our tools continuously, to streamline your document processes.

Regardless of the file type (scans or documents created electronically), just pop in one of our tools, and we will convert, compress or manipulate it in any way you like.


Wow, right? Good things come in small packages.

Hung Nguyen
Hung Nguyen
Content Marketing Manager