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Google Docs OCR to Convert Scanned PDF to Text

Part 1. Convert Scanned PDF to Text with Google Docs OCR 

Convert scanned PDF to text with Google Docs. After you login in with your Google accounts in Google Docs, click UPLOAD to upload the scanned PDF file that you're going to convert to text. Take Care! This is where Google Docs performs OCR. When uploading the scanned PDF, you can see a uploading window and there is a setting button as well. Click Setting to reveal the drop-down list. From here, check the option "Convert text from PDF and image files to Google documents".

This is how to use Google Docs OCR feature to convert scanned PDF to text. It's very easy, but Google Docs cannot retain the PDF file formatting and layout. If you want to keep the original PDF formatting and layout in the output docs, you should try Wondershare PDF Editor.

Part 2. Convert Scanned PDF to Text with Wondershare PDF Editor

Step 1. Upgrade Wondershare PDF Editor to enable the OCR feature

Click the download link to download Wondershare PDF Editor. After the download, click the .exe file to install it on your windows PC. To convert scanned PDF to Text, you need to click the OCR button to upgrade the PDF editor to the OCR featured version.

Download Win Version Download Mac Version

If you're a Mac user and also need to convert scanned PDF to text in Mac OS X Mountain Lion, download the Mac app, Wondershare PDF Editor Pro for Mac. After download, install it on your Mac and learn how to perform OCR to scanned PDF >>

Step 2.Perform OCR to scanned PDF file

After you successfully upgraded PDF Editor and  enabled the OCR feature, click the OPEN button to open the scanned PDF you’re going to convert to text on Wondershare PDF Editor. The moment you open a scanned PDF, a prompt will pop up, asking you to select the OCR Recognition Language for the scanned PDF file and perform OCR. Choose the right language and click the Perform OCR button. 

perform OCR to scanned PDF

Step 3. Convert scanned PDF to text

Now click the Convert menu to reveal all the converting options. From here, you can choose Word, PPT, Excel, RTF, etc. as the output format. Instead of selecting TXT as the output format, I suggest you choose Word as the output format. Wondershare will preserve the original PDF text, format, layout in the output Word document.

Download Win Version Download Mac Version

Google Documents VS. Wondershare PDF Editor

  Google Documents Wondershare PDF Editor
Convert scanned PDF to text/Microsoft Word/ Text with OCR feature
Convert scanned PDF to Excel/ PPT/ EPUB/  
Preserve the original PDF layout, graphics, images, etc. in the ouput Word/Excel/PPT files
Add text, images, and graphics to scanned PDF files
Delete, extract, and insert PDF pages to scanned PDF files
Merge and split PDF files
  Convert scanned PDF to text with Google Docs Convert scanned PDF to text with Wondershare PDF Editor

Product-related questions? Speak directly to our Support Team >>

I'd prefer the recommended PDF Editor. I used it to convert scanned PDF to editable Microsoft Word. It worked so fast. Just within 1 minute, it is done. Good JOB!
how much time does it take to extract the text. its about an hour or so and still its written " extracting text" in text search box.
Hey, Stewart Henderson, I am sorry to hear that. If so, I think you need to switch to another PDF converter that has the OCR functionality. Wondershare PDF Converter Pro or if you're running Mac OS X, Wondershare PDF Converter Pro for Mac , is a good choice. It enables you to convert scanned PDF to text without any file size limitation.
I've done all this but it doesn't work, it says the file is too big, and that it can't convert files over 2mb. My one page PDF document is 5MB. That's just one of 7pages, each scanned as invididual PDFs.