Excel Export to PDF (Table of Contents)
Introduction to Excel Export to PDF
By converting an Excel file to PDF format, anyone can open the file even when there is no Office installed in the system. Also, converting Excel files to PDF is useful as PDF files can be easily shared and printed. An Excel file can be converted to PDF format from directly inside MS Excel, however, online conversion services can also be used to do so.
Examples to Convert Excel File into PDF Format
In the below examples we will show how an Excel file can be converted to PDF format: Some common ways to convert an Excel file to PDF format are:
1. Saving Excel Files as PDF Files
Let us say we have an Excel file which has 4 worksheets in it. Now if we wish to export any selected range, table, or worksheet, or the entire file to PDF format, then we follow the below steps:
- Open the Excel file and select the range or sheets that need to be converted to PDF format :
If a table is to be exported, then place the cursor on any cell within the table.
If a certain worksheet is to be exported, then it has to be made active by clicking on the sheet’s tab.
If several adjacent worksheets are to be converted, then click the tab for the first worksheet, press the ‘Shift’ button, and then click the tab for the last worksheet. In case non-adjacent worksheets are to be converted, then press the ‘Ctrl’ button while clicking the tabs of each worksheet that need to be saved as PDF.
If the entire Excel file needs to be saved as a PDF file, then this step is to be ignored.
- Click on ‘File’ and then click on ‘Save As’ as below:
- Select PDF in the ‘Save As’ dropdown:
Now after saving if we wish to view the converted PDF file, then checkmark the option: ‘Open file after publishing’ in the ‘Save As’ dialog box. Following screenshot illustrates this:
The following option is to be selected under ‘Optimize for’ in the ‘Save As’ dialog box. If the converted PDF file is to be of high-quality print, then select ‘Standard (publishing online and printing)’, and
If the converted PDF file’s size is to be considered more important than the quality of the print, then select ‘Minimum size (publishing online). The following screenshot illustrates this.
Now click on the ‘Options’ button in the ‘Save As’ dialog box and select one of the options as desired:
- Selection: Selecting this option will export or convert the currently selected range in the file.
- Active Sheet(s): Selecting this option would save the current active worksheet or all the selected worksheets in the file.
- Table: Selecting this option would convert the active table in the file to PDF.
- Entire workbook: Selecting this option would convert the entire Excel workbook to PDF.
- Now click on ‘OK’ and this would convert the Excel file to PDF format.
NOTE: One limitation with this method is that using the ‘Save As’ option and choosing ‘PDF’ as file type will sometimes be on more than one sheet which happens when the content of the file is more than a single PDF sheet’s fitting area. So to overcome this limitation, we can press Ctrl+P to open the print preview window before saving. Then we can select ‘Fit Sheet on One Page’ under the settings and thereafter save the file as PDF. Following screenshot illustrates this:
2. Exporting Excel files to PDF using Adobe Tools
Adobe tools do not work as efficiently as Microsoft for the Excel to PDF conversions, however, in paid versions and subscriptions, they have the conversion feature incorporated. Adobe Reader X and some previous versions had the option of installing Adobe PDF printer that could be used for the conversion of Excel files to PDF format. However, the latest version Adobe Reader XI does not have this feature available.
So let us see below how some of the latest versions of Adobe Reader can be used for exporting Excel files to PDF format.
- Adobe Reader XI
This version (with the paid subscription only) has the ‘Create PDF’ tab which allows the user to create a PDF file from an Excel file with the help of a single button click. Following screenshot illustrates this:
- Adobe Acrobat XI Pro
This version (with the paid subscription only) has a ‘Create’ button on its toolbar. Clicking on ‘Create’ and then selecting ‘PDF from file’ allows the user to easily convert an Excel file to PDF format. Following screenshot illustrates this:
Alternatively, a PDF file can be directly created from an Excel file using Adobe Acrobat Pro with the help of any one of the following methods:
- There is an Acrobat tab on the Excel ribbon. We can click on the ‘Create PDF’ button on the Acrobat tab to do the required conversion.
- Click on ‘File’ and then select ‘Save As Adobe PDF’
- Click on ‘File’ -> ‘Print’. Now selecting Adobe PDF and then configuring the settings would do the required conversion.
Things to Remember
- An Excel file needs to be necessarily converted to PDF format when we do not wish to let other people edit the data in our file, and only allow them to view the data.
- PDF format is one of the most preferred formats today in most of the business.
- Excel allows to convert part of an Excel file or the whole file to PDF format.
- If the data content does not fit on a single page in the PDF format, then extra content would be pushed to the next sheet.
- There are a lot of online converters that can be used to convert Excel files to PDF format.
- We can even create a VBA code to convert an Excel file to PDF format.
- Some of the online PDF converters that are easily available for free conversion are:
- Investintech Free Online PDF Creator
- Nitro Excel to PDF Converter
- Soda PDF Online Converter
- Foxit Reader
This has been a guide to Excel Export to PDF. Here we discuss How to use Excel Export to PDF along with practical examples and downloadable excel template. You can also go through our other suggested articles –