In this article:

Extract Text From PDF (Easiest Way in 2024)

In this article, we will show you how to extract text from a PDF document using online tools. Simply follow the steps below.

How to Extract Text from a PDF

To extract from a PDF file, we will be utilizing Lido, a spreadsheet designed to streamline and automate repetitive tasks. You can set up an account for free at this link:

Step 1: Create a spreadsheet from the Lido Files page.

Start by logging into your Lido account and navigate to the Files page. Here, you'll find the option to create a new spreadsheet. Click this option to open a new spreadsheet, which will serve as your workspace for extracting text from your PDF.

Step 2: Navigate to the PDF Importer tool from the File menu.

Once your spreadsheet is ready, head to the File menu at the top of the interface. Select "Import from PDF" from the dropdown menu to open the PDF Importer tool. This tool is specifically built to extract data from PDF files and convert it into a usable spreadsheet format.

extract text from pdf

Step 3: Upload the PDF document you would like to extract text from.

Click the upload option within the PDF Importer tool to browse your computer and select the PDF file from which you want to extract text. Ensure you choose the correct document containing the data you need.

extract text from a pdf

Step 4: Modify the selection to cover the area of the text you wish to extract and click on "Extract data."

After uploading the PDF, you will see a preview of the document. Use the selection tool to highlight the specific area containing the text you want to extract. Adjust the selection box to include only the necessary text, then click "Extract data" to begin the extraction process.

extracting text from pdf

Step 5: Check that desired text is extracted and press “Insert at active cell”

The PDF importer is engineered to organize data into a tabular format, thus assigning each line of text to a separate cell if the selected PDF area has plain text. The text that has been extracted is now positioned in the active cell of the spreadsheet.

If you wish to extract more text from the PDF, you can click "Back" at this stage. If you are finished, simply close the modal by clicking the X button in the top right corner.

extract pdf text

Step 6: After selecting the column of text in the spreadsheet, press Cmd-C on Mac or Ctrl-C on Windows.

Highlight the cells or column where the text is now stored in your spreadsheet. To copy this text, use Cmd-C if you're on a Mac or Ctrl-C if you're on a Windows computer.

pdf text extraction

Step 7: In the place where you want to paste the text, press Cmd-V on Mac or Ctrl-V on Windows. 

Navigate to where you want to use the extracted text, such as an empty Google Docs document or another text editor. Paste the copied text using Cmd-V on a Mac or Ctrl-V on Windows.

As an example, here is how it would look in a blank Google Doc.

get text from pdf

We hope you now have a better understanding of how to extract text from a PDF file.

Schedule a free automation consult
Learn more

Level up your Google Sheets skills with our free Google Sheets automation guide

Wasting too much time doing things manually in spreadsheets? Want to spend more time doing what you love? Our 100% free, 27-page Google Sheets automation guide is full of new tips and tricks that will save you time and money!