How to Search for a Word or Phrase in a PDF Document with 4 Free Methods

Last updated on February 5, 2024

Summary :

The text can be easily filtered and searched with appropriate tools. This article offers four practical and user-friendly solutions for PDF searching.

Search in A PDF

How to Search in PDF

How to Search in PDF

When you’re looking for typos or specific keywords from your own business documents or assignment documents, you need to search for words or phrases, which requires specific PDF reader tools.

To save your bacon, this page has introduced four free and easy methods to search for any words and phrases in a PDF document. The solution to finding text in multiple PDF documents or a PDF file folder is also discussed.

👉 To get started, get PDFgear, the best free PDF reader and editor to search in PDFs.

How to Search for a Word or Phrase in PDF for Free

PDFgear is a comprehensive free PDF editor that provides Mac and Windows users with a simple interface to search for words and phrases in PDF documents.

Free PDF Searcher Software

Search for text in PDF documents or search in scanned PDFs by converting them into Word.

What makes PDFgear stand out from other PDF software is its advanced editing features at a free price. Keep reading to learn more details on how to search in a PDF.

Step 1. Download and install PDF software

To begin, download and install the PDFgear software version onto your Mac or Windows computer by clicking the below button. Then, launch the software and open the PDF file you want to search.

Step 2. Search for a word or phrase

Access the “Find” feature located in the “View” menu. Alternatively, press Ctrl+F (or Command+F on a Mac) to activate the Search in Page feature. Type in the keyword or phrase you want to find and press “Enter.”

Open the Find Box

Open the Find Box

Step 3. Review search results

PDFgear will highlight all matching words or phrases within the PDF document. Navigate through the results by using the left and right arrows or clicking on the highlighted text directly.

Search in A PDF with PDFgear

Search in A PDF with PDFgear

How to Search for a Word or Phrase in a PDF Online

The first one to be introduced is the handiest method, searching for words and phrases in documents using the free online PDF management tool PDFgear.

PDFgear is a complete PDFgear toolbox, and you can find it within a powerful PDF reader tool with a practical text-searching feature.

There are many reasons that it’s handier to use PDFgear to search for words and phrases in a document: the web-based service is available wherever you are; it’s also loaded with document editing and annotation features; PDFgear even offers PDF conversion & compression features for easy sharing.

The following tutorial shows you the simple steps to find text in a document using PDF.

Step 1. Go to PDFgear PDF Reader

Navigate to the PDFgear PDF reader tool, PDFgear works with both PC and mobile, so you can use either a web browser program on your PC or a web browser app on your mobile phone.

PDF Reader PDFgear

PDF Reader PDFgear

Step 2. Upload the Document to PDFgear

Then it’s time to upload the desired document to PDFgear PDF Reader. Hit the Choose file button or drag and drop the file to upload the PDF document to PDFgear.

Step 3. Search Words and Phrases in PDF

Then the PDF document will be loaded in PDFgear PDF Reader, hit the magnifying glass button to Find any wanted words or phrases in PDF. And you can also enable Match case if needed.

The PDFgear PDF reader tool is also integrated with a powerful PDF editor tool, and document editing options such as highlighting text or drawing can be found in the upper menu bar.

Search for a Word in PDF Using PDFgear

Search for a Word in PDF Using PDFgear

How to Search for a Word or Phrase in PDF with Adobe Acrobat

If you’re reading the PDF document on your personal computer, which happens to have installed the Adobe PDF reader tool Acrobat, you can use it to search for desired words, phrases, and sentences in the document as well. The methods apply to Adobe Acrobat Reader and above.

Step 1:Launch Adobe Acrobat on your computer. For those who don’t know if it’s on their computer, type ‘Adobe Acrobat’ into the search box from your PC taskbar.

Step 2: Hit the File tab from the left side of the menubar, and hit Open to open a local PDF document. You can also use the shortcut Ctrl + O on your keyboard.

Step 3: Browse for and select the file to open the target PDF document on your computer in Adobe Acrobat.

Then Adobe Acrobat will load the document on the PDF reader screen.

Step 4: Hit the Edit button from the menubar, and hit Find to use Adobe Acrobat to find text in PDF. You can also use the shortcut Ctrl + F on your keyboard.

Hit the Previous or Next button under the search bar to jump to the previous or next found word/phrase/sentence.

Search for a Word in PDF Using Acrobat

Search for a Word in PDF Using Acrobat

How to Search for a Word or Phrase in PDF using Google Chrome

The popular program Google Chrome serves more than a web browser – it can also be used as a simple PDF reader tool. In a later update, Google turned Chrome into a decent PDF reader. This new feature will come in handy when you have nothing installed on your new work computer other than the Google Chrome browser, and you need to view a document real quickly.

In our earlier guide, we utilized this feature and used Google Chrome to present a PDF like PPT. And now with Chrome’s inbuilt text-finding feature, it’s doable to view and find text in a document using Google Chrome.

Step 1: Launch Google Chrome on your computer.

At any tab, drag and drop the document that you intend to find words from into the Google Chrome UI.

Step 2: Then Google Chrome will quickly load and display the imported document like a PDF reader.

Hit the triple dots from the right side of the menu bar and select the Find… option, or you can also press Ctrl + F on your keyboard.

Step 3:Type in the desired word or phrase in the text finding box, found words and phrases should be marked by the indigo color background

And when the caret is in the text finding box, you can press the Enter key to jump to the next result.

Search for a Word in PDF Using Chrome

Search for a Word in PDF Using Chrome

How to Search for a Word or Phrase in a PDF Document: FAQs

How to search words in a PDF on Windows and Mac?

PDFgear is the best free online tool for you to search words in a PDF document on Windows, Mac, Linux, etc. computers. Go to pdfgear.com/read-pdf/ with your web browser, import your document, and then hit the magnifying glass button to use the text searching feature.

How to search word in PDF on mobile?

To search for a PDF on mobiles like iPhone and Android phones, the easiest method is using the PDFgear reader tool. Go to pdfgear.com/read-pdf/ with your web browser app, import your document, and then hit the magnifying glass button to use the text searching feature.

How to search for a word in a PDF on Chromebook?

Apart from PC and mobile phones, PDFgear is a great online PDF management tool that works with Chromebooks and laptops as well. To search for a word in a PDF on Chromebook, navigate to pdfgear.com/read-pdf/ with the pre-installed Google Chrome, and use the word searching feature.

How to solve PDF search not finding Words?

In some cases, the text in a PDF document is unrecognizable to the text searching feature. In that case, an OCR tool such as onlineocr.net is what we should resort to. With OCR, we can easily convert visual data with text to editable texts. and then you can use free online PDF reader tools like PDFgear to search for words and sentences in the document.

How to search for a word in a scanned PDF document?

To search for a word or phrase in a scanned document is just like what we did with a PDF document, except that you should first adjust and transmit the scanned document sometimes.

In some cases, scanned documents of high DPI are too large in file size to deal with, learn from our guide on how to reduce scanned document size.

How to search for a word in a folder of PDF files?

To search for a word in a folder of PDF files, the best option is using Adobe Acrobat’s Advanced Search feature. Go to Edit > Advanced Search (or Shift + Ctrl + F on the keyboard), and in the pop-up window, define the folder where you’d like to search, and the word or phrase you intend to search for, then hit the Search button.

To Sum Up

That’ll be all about how to search for a word or a phrase in a PDF document file. The online PDFgear is more recommended for it offers other practical features such as commenting PDF, compressing PDF, and converting PDF documents to Word, Excel, PPT, JPG, etc. It’s just a nice PDF creator tool!

After learning about the four methods introduced, and frequently asked questions about text searching, I believe you’ve acquired this practical office skill, making it a whole lot easier for you to find typos or specific information in any document, small or large.

I do hope this page helped you, if it does, please consider sharing with more people the useful information!

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