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How to mail merge a PDF file and send as email attachment

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How to mail merge a PDF file and send as email attachment

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August 17, 2021

In this article we will show you how to use PDF Mail Merger to automatically fill a PDF file in five easy steps. Log in to your account and create a new Mail Merge with a cxlick on “Create Mail Merge”:

Step #1: Upload your PDF file

In the first step, drag and drop or click the box to upload the PDF form you want to use as a template. It does not matter whether the PDF has interactive form elements or not.

As soon as you uploaded the PDF file, you will be navigated to the second step.

Step #2: Upload your Excel spreadsheet

Here you can upload your Excel file. Make sure that the relevant data is on the first sheet of your Excel workbook, and that each column has a column heading.

Step #3: Drag and drop placeholders onto your PDF

After uploading the Excel file, the editor is loaded in the third step. Drag and drop the placeholders on the left side of the screen onto the PDF file. The placeholder names result from the column headings of your Excel file, which PDF Mail Merger will later replace by the data from the corresponding Excel column.

You can search for a specific placeholder in the search field:

If no or incorrect placeholders are displayed, you can adjust them by clicking on the link “Change Header Row…”. You will see an excerpt from your Excel sheet. Select the row in which the column headings are actually located. With a click on “Change header row”, the placeholders are regenerated accordingly:

The toolbar

You can drag the placeholders to the desired position and adjust the appearance using the toolbar.

  • Font Family: Choose one of three fonts. Very soon you will be able to choose more fonts or upload your own.
  • Font Size: You can choose one of several font sizes to adjust the text size of the placeholders.
  • Text Alignment: Choose left or right alignment, or center your text.
  • Text Color: Choose one of the predefined colors or enter the hex code of your desired color.
  • Delete Placeholder: To delete a placeholder on the editor, click the red trash can.

Preview your data

With a click on “Preview” you can see what the PDF files generated later will look like.

The column names on the editor will be replaced with the data from your Excel file.

Browse through the individual PDF files, each PDF file being filled with the data set from a line in the Excel file.

Make sure everything is shown correctly before going to the next step. Once you’ve added all of the placeholders as desired, click “Save & Next”.

Step #4: Set the options for your PDF mail merge

You are redirected to the forth and last step.

Your Balance

In this table you can see how many credits are used for the mail merge and how many you have left in your balance. One credit will generate one PDF document for one single row in your Excel spreadsheet. The always-free plan comes with free PDF files per month, and you can easily upgrade it if you require more PDF files.

Settings

Below you can make further settings for the file names, output options and the email template. Let’s have a look at all the settings in detail.

Specify custom filenames

In the first section you can specify a custom filename for the generated PDF files. You can also use variables to access data from your uploaded Excel file. You can define a variable by typing the character @ and selecting the corresponding column name from the dropdown menu. If your Excel file contains more column names than can be displayed in the dropdown menu, enter the column name after the @ sign to narrow the selection in the dropdown menu. To delete a placeholder variable simply click on the x and it will be removed.

Output options

In the next section you can adjust the output options. Choose whether you want to download the output files as individual PDF files or as one large, combined PDF file. You can also choose whether existing interactive form elements, such as text fields, radio buttons and so on, should be removed from the PDF files, or if these should be kept. If you are not sure what to choose, we recommend that you keep the default settings.

Send as email attachment

In the last section you can specify whether you want to send the PDF files as an email attachment to a recipient list from your Excel file. Please note that you have to be subscribed to the Pro or Enterprise plan to use this optional feature.

When you are all set, click on “Generate PDF files”:

Wait a few seconds for the mail merge to complete.

Step #5: Download the generated PDF files

Click the button to download the completed PDF forms.

The downloaded zip file contains all PDF forms automatically filled with the data from your Excel sheet.

The PDF files were filled with the placeholders from the editor (in the screenshot below we have marked the filled placeholders in red for clarity).

You can create a free account for PDF Mail Merger here. If you have any questions, our team will be happy to assist you – just shoot an email to [email protected]. Thanks for reading and see you soon!

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