How to Write on PDFs on a Mac: A Step-by-Step Guide

Hello lovely readers! 😊 Are you a Mac user who frequently works with PDFs and you’re wondering how to write on them? Well, look no further because we’ve got you covered. Writing on PDFs can sometimes be a hassle, but with the right tools and techniques, it can be a breeze. In this article, we will guide you through the step-by-step process of writing on PDFs on your Mac. Whether you need to sign a document, fill out a form, or edit text, we’ve got it all covered.

How to Write on a PDF on Mac

So grab your cup of tea or coffee ☕ and let’s get to it!

Introduction: Writing on PDFs with Mac

If you’re an avid Mac user, you may have found yourself struggling to make edits or add notes to PDF documents. However, there is a solution to this problem that you may not be aware of. In this article, we will teach you how to write on PDFs with Mac, so you can easily make any necessary notes or changes to your documents without having to switch to another device or platform.

What is PDF?

PDF stands for Portable Document Format, which is a created by Adobe Systems. It is a commonly used file format that allows for easy document sharing across different platforms and devices. The main feature of PDFs is that they display a document as it was originally intended, with a fixed layout and formatting that will appear the same no matter where the file is opened.

Why is Writing on PDFs Useful?

Writing on PDFs can be extremely useful for a variety of reasons. For example, if you are reviewing a PDF document that has been shared with you, you may want to make notes or edits to the document to highlight specific areas or to correct any errors. This can easily be done on a Mac with the use of certain applications, which we will discuss in further detail in the following sections.

The Best Tools for Writing on PDFs with Mac

There are several tools available for writing on PDFs with Mac, so you can choose the one that works best for your needs. Here are some of the best options:

1. Preview

Preview is a default application included on Macs that allows users to view and edit a variety of file types, including PDFs. With Preview, you can add text, highlights, shapes, and signatures to your PDF documents. It also allows you to rearrange pages and fill out forms. This is a great option for those who need basic editing tools.

2. Adobe Acrobat DC

If you need more advanced features, Adobe Acrobat DC may be the better choice for you. You can easily add text, images, and even audio to your PDFs using this software. It also comes with features such as text recognition and conversion, allowing you to easily convert PDFs into editable text documents.

3. PDF Expert

PDF Expert is a popular option for Mac users who need advanced editing features. It allows you to annotate, edit, and sign PDF documents with ease. You can also merge, split, and redact pages within your PDFs. Additionally, it supports OCR (Optical Character Recognition) technology, which can convert scanned documents into editable text with high accuracy.


In conclusion, writing on PDFs with Mac is a simple process that can be done with the use of various applications. Whether you need basic editing tools or more advanced features, there is a tool out there to meet your needs. With the ability to make notes and edits directly on your PDF documents, you can save time and improve your productivity while working with different types of documents.

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Method 1: Using Preview to Write on PDFs

If you are a Mac user, writing on PDFs can be a tedious task if you don’t have the right tools. Fortunately, the Preview app in your Mac can do the job for you. Preview is a built-in application in your Mac, making it readily accessible anytime you want to write or annotate on your PDFs. Below is the step-by-step guide on how to write on PDFs using Preview.

Open the PDF in Preview

The first step is to open the PDF file in Preview. You can do this by simply double-clicking on the file or opening Preview and selecting the file from the File menu. Once the file is open in Preview, you can proceed to write on it.

Use the Tools Menu to Write on the PDF

To write or annotate on the PDF, you need to use the Tools menu. From the top menu bar, click on Tools, then choose Annotate from the drop-down menu. This will open up all the annotation tools that you can use, such as Text, Note, Shapes, and many more. Select the type of annotation you want to use, and click on the PDF where you want to add it. A pop-up window will appear where you can type in your annotation or comment.

Save the PDF with Your Annotations

After writing or annotating on the PDF file, you need to save it to keep your changes. To do this, select File from the top menu bar, then choose Save from the drop-down menu. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Cmd + S to save the file quickly. Remember to choose a different name for the file or create a copy to avoid overwriting the original PDF file.

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Method 2: Using Acrobat Reader to Write on PDFs

For those who don’t have access to Adobe Acrobat or don’t want to pay for it, Acrobat Reader is a great alternative for writing on PDFs. Here are the three easy steps to writing on PDFs using Acrobat Reader:

Open the PDF in Acrobat Reader

The first step is to open the PDF in Acrobat Reader. You can do this by double-clicking on the PDF file or by opening Acrobat Reader and selecting the file from the File menu. Once you have the PDF open, you’ll be able to use Acrobat Reader’s Comment tools to write on it.

Select the Comment Tools

After opening the PDF, you’ll need to select the Comment tools from the toolbar on the right side of the screen. There are many types of annotations you can choose from, including text, notes, shapes, and more. Once you have selected the type of annotation you want to use, click on the PDF where you want to add it. You’ll be able to add your annotations wherever you want on the PDF.

Save the PDF with Your Annotations

Finally, once you have finished writing on the PDF, you’ll need to save it with your annotations. To do this, select File and then Save from the menu. Your annotations will be saved on top of the original PDF file, so you’ll be able to open it later and see everything you wrote on it. This is a great way to make notes on important PDFs or to fill out forms without having to print them out and write on them by hand.

Overall, using Acrobat Reader to write on PDFs is a simple and effective way to add annotations and notes to important documents. It’s easy to use and doesn’t require any special software or technical know-how. So if you need to write on a PDF, give Acrobat Reader a try and see how it works for you!

Method 3: Using Third-Party Apps to Write on PDFs

When it comes to editing PDFs, there are several third-party apps available that offer advanced annotation and editing features. Here, we’ll take a look at some popular third-party apps and how to use them to write on PDFs.

Choose a Third-Party App

The first step is to choose a third-party app that allows you to write on PDFs. Adobe Acrobat Pro, PDF Expert, and PDFpen are some of the most popular choices in this category. Each of these apps comes with its unique set of features, so it’s essential to choose one that meets your requirements.

Open the PDF in the Third-Party App

Once you have selected the app, the second step is to open the PDF file in the app. You can do this by double-clicking on the file or opening the app and selecting the file from the File menu. The app will then load the PDF on the screen, ready for editing.

Use the Tools Provided in the App to Write on the PDF

Most third-party apps come equipped with a variety of annotation tools that you can use to write on the PDF. These tools include pens, highlighters, text boxes, and more. The process of using these tools may vary depending on the app you choose, but most offer a simple and intuitive interface that makes the editing process a breeze.

For example, Adobe Acrobat Pro’s commenting tools allow you to add comments and markups such as highlight, strikethrough, and underline. You can also add text boxes and shapes to the document and even fill out form fields. PDF Expert, on the other hand, offers a feature-rich interface that lets you edit text, add images, and sign documents. Similarly, PDFpen provides tools that allow you to add text, images, and even create links to other pages or websites.

In conclusion, using a third-party app to write on PDFs provides a robust and efficient way of editing documents. It gives you the flexibility to choose an app that meets your requirements and offers advanced editing features that aren’t available in most basic PDF editors. So, if you’re looking to take your PDF editing to the next level, be sure to give these apps a try.

Tips for Writing on PDFs

If you’re like most people, you’ve probably had to fill out a PDF form at some point in your life. But what if you need to do more than just fill in a few blanks? Perhaps you need to make annotations, edit text, or even add your own signature. With the right tools and techniques, you can easily write on PDFs and make them your own.

Use a Stylus for More Precision

If you’re working on a smaller device like a tablet or smartphone, your fingers might not be precise enough for accurate annotations. That’s where a stylus can come in handy. Not only will it help you draw straighter lines and make smaller marks, but it can also reduce the chances of accidentally deleting or moving something you’ve already written. Some styluses even come with a “palm rejection” feature that prevents accidental touches from disrupting your flow.

Save a Copy of the Original PDF

Before making any edits or annotations to a PDF, it’s always a good idea to save a separate copy of the original file. This way, you can refer back to it later if needed and avoid accidentally overwriting something important. It’s also a good habit to get into when working with any type of document, not just PDFs.

Use Different Colors and Highlighters to Differentiate Annotations

When you’re making multiple annotations on a PDF, it can be hard to keep track of everything. One solution is to use different colors or highlighters to differentiate between different types of annotations. For example, you could use blue for corrections, yellow for questions, and green for comments. This way, you’ll be able to quickly and easily see which annotations serve which purpose.

Writing on PDFs can be a valuable skill for anyone who needs to work with documents digitally. Whether you’re a student, a business professional, or just someone who likes to keep their life organized, these tips can help you get started. With a little practice and the right tools, you’ll be writing on PDFs like a pro in no time.

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Wrap Up

Now you know how to write on PDF Mac easily. So, no more printing and scanning, saving paper and energy is a win-win situation. These few simple, yet effective steps can help increase productivity in your work. It feels great to go paperless and contribute to the environment. Learning something new is always interesting. Hope this article added valuable insight to your knowledge bank. Thank you for reading, we hope to see you again soon!

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