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How to copy a table from PDF to Excel

How to copy a table from PDF to Excel

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December 15, 2022

PDF is one of the most popular formats for reading. However, the data in a PDF file is not very convenient to work with. And converting it into more convenient formats designed for editing data is no easy task. Often when using various conversion tools, information inside the PDF is lost or incorrectly displayed in a new document when converting from one format to another. This article offers detailed instructions for how to copy a table from PDF to Excel.

Faxing, thank-you notes, newsletters, posters, doctor’s records, bills, etc. were all done on paper in the corporate world in the past. Nowaday businesses can complete these duties without physical documents in the modern world, due to the rising use of document management software in place of paper. People who started their businesses with rubber stamps now use Excel spreadsheets and PDFs. The influx of new technology requires new tools to eliminate the processes that take up the most time.

Many employees spend too much time searching for various digital tools to perform basic tasks. Having software that can handle the entire process of scanning, editing, converting, organizing, and storing documents can save you time. We give you two options on how you can convert a copy a PDF table to an Excel spreadsheet.

Table of Contents

Unfortunately, there is no way to directly open a PDF file in an Excel spreadsheet.
However, there are two ways to transfer data indirectly to an Excel Spreadsheet using Microsoft Word:

  • Option #1: Convert PDF table to Excel
  • Option #2: Manually copy PDF table to Excel

Let’s break down each option separately.

Option #1: Convert PDF table to Excel

How to copy a table from PDF to Excel

1. Open Windows Explorer and find the PDF file. Hover your cursor over the “Open with” option, and select the option “Choose another app”.

PDF to Excel

2. Select “Microsoft Word” or “Word” and click “Just once” to open the PDF file.

Convert the document.

3. Convert the document. After you open the PDF file in Word, a window will appear informing you that the program will convert the file into a Word document. Click the “OK” button to confirm.

4. Now Word has converted your PDF file to an editable Word document. Copy the table from the Word document by highlighting the desired rows and columns. Right-click with the mouse cursor on the selected table and click “Copy.” Alternatively, you can use the “Ctrl” and “C” keys to copy the table to the clipboard.

Open the Excel spreadsheet into which you want to insert the copied PDF table

5. Open the Excel spreadsheet into which you want to insert the copied PDF table.

6. Paste the table in Excel.

Right-click on the cell or area where you want to paste the copied table, and select the “Paste” option. Or use the “Ctrl” and “V” keys to paste it from the clipboard.

Paste the table in Excel.

7. Save the Excel spreadsheet. Congratulations, you have copied a PDF table to your Excel spreadsheet!

You can read in our previous article about “How to open a PDF file“.

Option #2: Manually copy PDF table to Excel

Manually copy PDF table to Excel

1. Open the PDF file and copy the table that you want to use by highlighting the desired rows and columns. Right-click with the mouse cursor on the selected table and click “Copy.” Alternatively, you can use the “Ctrl” and “C” keys to copy the table to the clipboard.

Open Microsoft Word and paste the table.

2. Open Microsoft Word and paste the table. Right-click on an empty area in the Word document, and select the “Paste” option. Or use the “Ctrl” and “V” keys to paste it from the clipboard. Copy the table that you have just inserted into the Word document to the clipboard again.

Open Microsoft Excel

3. Open Microsoft Excel and paste the table from the clipboard by right-clicking on an empty cell in the Excel spreadsheet, and select the “Paste” option. Or use the “Ctrl” and “V” keys to paste it from the clipboard. Fix formatting and clean up the table in Excel. Done!

Сonclusion

After reading this article, you will have an understanding of the two most popular and common methods for converting PDFs to Excel. This knowledge will help you convert PDFs to Excel sheets quickly and easily. You will also probably begin to see new features and abilities for analyzing data or doing other analyses that you haven’t done before because, for example, the original data was stored in PDF format.
You’ve looked at some criteria to help you decide which method is right for you, and you’ve learned more about the relationship between PDF files and Excel.


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