How to insert a pdf into Excel | Complete Tutorial

In this article we’ll see how to insert pdf into excel where we’ll see how to import a pdf into excel as well as attach pdf to excel cell so it locks into cells.

Sometimes we need to embed pdf in excel, for example when we’re sharing an excel file with our business partners and we want to include more information which they can read about by linking a pdf in excel. Or we are creating a product catalog and want to link detailed brochures of each product in PDF form for each product so that when someone clicks it’ll open pdf from excel of that particular product.

So now let’s see how to insert pdf into excel.

Embedding PDF in Excel

  1. Go to Insert tab, under Text select Object
    Insert PDF in Excel
  2. Object dialog box will appear. Under Create New select ‘Adobe Acrobat Document’ from list. Do make sure you have Adobe Reader installed otherwise the option would not appear in the list.
    Insert PDF in Excel
  3. Select ‘Display as icon’ option and hit OK.
    Insert PDF in Excel
  4. Now in the dialog box, select the PDF file and click Open.
    Insert PDF in Excel

This will insert pdf into Excel. After clicking Open button it’ll open PDF from excel, just close it and switch back to Excel.

This is how the inserted PDF would look in Excel.
Insert PDF in Excel

Lock Embedded PDF in Excel

When we import pdf to excel, it is inserted like an object. It’s not locked into any cell so even if you change the size of the cell or filter it the attached pdf in excel will not move.

You can see the image below to understand how the PDF object/icon will behave.

Insert PDF in Excel

Now let’s lock the imported pdf into excel cell:

  1. Right click on the PDF icon and select Format If you have attached multiple PDFs into excel then select all icons and right click to choose Format option.
    Insert PDF in Excel
  2. In the dialog box, under Properties tab select the option of ‘Move and size with cells’ and hot OK.
    Insert PDF in Excel

Now all embedded PDFs are locked into cells so now when you resize or filter cells, the PDF will act same.

Renaming Imported PDF in Excel

When you embed PDF file in excel, it has a generic name ‘Adobe Acrobat Document’. Now you may want to change the names for better reference.

  1. Right click on the PDF icon/object and under Acrobat Document option select Convert…
    PDF in Excel
  2. In Convert dialog box, click Change Icon..
    PDF in Excel
  3. Now under the new dialog box, change the Caption to the new name you want for Embedded PDF file. Hit OK.
    PDF in Excel
  4. The name of the imported PDF is now changed in Excel.


That was all about how to embed pdf in excel.

I hope this article was helpful to you and explained you the way to import pdf into excel and work with inserted file in Excel like PDFs/Objects.

If you have any questions or tips, I’d love to hear them in the comment section below.

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