Find Your Information Faster With Searchable PDF


Which file should I use when scanning documents? Take a look at the benefits of using a searchable PDF.When you digitize documents, you need to decide what format you want to save them as -- TIFF, PDF, and JPEG are common formats; each with different benefits and uses.

Today we’ll go over the benefits of using searchable PDF.

When you scan documents, you need to be able to find them again. There are two primary methods of tagging documents for retrieval: tagging documents by metadata (file name, customer number, customer name, etc.) which requires you to search on a limited number of terms and full-text search, which allows you to search for any word within a document.As a side note, PDF is an open standard (Adobe no longer owns it) so even though Adobe created it decades ago, improvements and standard maintenance are no longer dependent only on Adobe.

What Is a Searchable PDF?

Using Adobe (and nearly any document scanning software) allows users to scan documents and save that document as a PDF. Using OCR, the PDF file can then be converted to a searchable document.

You can do this with Adobe Acrobat as well as many other software products. Converted to searchable PDF, you can now search for key phrases or words and even special symbols.

The Benefits of a Searchable PDF

One of the many benefits of a searchable PDF is that you can quickly search documents that you have scanned instead of manually looking up information. For example, instead of manually scanning through a case study or a 20-page white paper for a phrase, you can use a few tools or commands to search for the key phrase in a matter of seconds. This helps you save time, especially when you are searching for multiple keywords or phrases.

Your ability to find information moves from the speed of paper (or trying to remember the name of the document -- and folder you stashed it in on your PC) to a Google-like search.

Another great benefit to a searchable PDF is that you can easily share this file with others.

Nearly everyone has a free Adobe Reader for opening and reading PDF documents. For instance, if you created a 40-page manual for your software product and one of the sections includes a troubleshooting guide for your team, your team members can easily find the data they need to fix an error with the product.

This helps save time for the team member who is troubleshooting. It also can save your business money over time in labor costs and expenses for technical support. It can simplify the search process and save time so that your employees can be more productive on the job.

You can also save on cost by and even enhance the value of your electronic documents by making them searchable for customers. When your documents are transformed into searchable PDFs, they can be easier to find and use online, too. With this added value, you help enhance the customer experience and increase the potential for repeat business.

Final Thoughts

Searchable PDFs are more than the exception. In today's digital world, they are becoming a standard thanks to its time-saving and cost-effective benefits. Thus, it's crucial to use PDF files to your full advantage. By leveraging searchable PDFs, you can save enhance productivity, improve the customer experience, and increase your bottomline over time.

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About The Author

Lane focuses on fixing businesses broken business processes. He is Advanced Systems Document Management Director. What does document management actually look like? Watch this free demo to find  out.