Translators, proofreaders, writers, and people who submit their works in e-documents may frequently need to do a word count. Word count refers to the statistics or the total number of words in a given document or piece of text. Unlike Microsoft Word or other word processors, PDF readers mostly won't count or display the number of words in a PDF document. Then how do you do a PDF word count when needed?

In the modern era, PDF software has shifted the way people handle PDF documents. Anyone can effortlessly know how many words are in their PDF file by using a PDF tool like SwifDoo PDF. Moreover, Word and online word counters are also here to make things easier. Read this post to find out several free ways to do word count in your PDF.

Do Word Count in PDF with SwifDoo PDF

SwifDoo PDF is in the business of helping PDF users manage and manipulate their documents without a hassle. You can utilize the program to edit, convert, split, compress PDFs, etc. It acts as a PDF word count tool that can count the number of pages, words, and characters with/without spaces and lines in a PDF. The tiny size and quick response make it stand out from other PDF software.

Let’s dive into how to do a PDF word count.

Step 1: Free download, install, launch SwifDoo PDF, and open your PDF file with it;

Step 2: Tap the View tab on the top, and click Word Count on the right side of the sub-menu bar;


Step 3: The Word Count window comes out in a blink of an eye.    


The “Word Count” window lists clearly how many pages, words, characters, and lines in the current PDF document. The whole process is simple and fast. SwifDoo PDF word counter supports Chinese, Spanish, French, and dozens of other languages.

                                                                                            Free Download

In addition to the straightforward way above, you can do a word count in a PDF by converting it to a Word document. This may be particularly the case for scanned copies which require OCR to recognize the text. SwifDoo PDF converter is here to get the job done. Check how to do the word count of a PDF using this method.

Step 1: Open your PDF document in SwifDoo PDF and go to Convert > PDF to Word;


Step 2: Select where to save the Word file, and hit the Start button in the SwifDoo PDF Converter dialogue box;


Step 3: Open the converted Word file to check the number of words in the PDF.    

It should be noted that converting PDF to Word is to calculate the approximate words’ number as the converted file is not 100% the same as the original especially for an image-only or scanned copy. Therefore, the count result may be inaccurate.

Those who need to do a word count in a PDF may sometimes want to search for a specific word or phrase. That’s where SwifDoo PDF comes into play. It lets you search for and find a word in a PDF from the original text, annotations, and bookmarks, and shows the number of results.

Google Docs Word Counter

Anyone having a Google account can use Google Drive and Google Docs online for free. Google Docs works in a similar manner to Word, with which you can compose your file by typing and formatting text. The Google Docs service enables you to open a PDF file in a browser and count the number of words in just a few clicks. It also functions as a page and character counter.

Here is the way to do the word count in a PDF.

Step 1: Log into your Google Docs account and click the file folder icon to upload the PDF you wish to calculate the words in;


Step 2: Tap the Open with drop-down menu to choose Google Docs;


Step 3: Go to Tools and select Word count in the pop-up list once the PDF is opened in Docs;


Step 4: The Word count window appears and you can view the total number of words, pages, and characters in your PDF.  


Count Words of a PDF in Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word 2013 or a later version is a free PDF word counter for its users. It can open a PDF and automatically present the total number of words in the file in the status bar. The component of the Office suite also counts a string of text when you select them. Find out the quick method to do a word count for a PDF.

Step 1: Open Word on your computer, go to File > Open;

Step 2: Browse your computer to select the PDF you are to count words in and double click to open it;

Step 3: Click OK in the pop-up dialogue box, and then the PDF will be converted to a Word file with the number of words at the bottom left corner.


The PDF to Word conversion may take a while to complete, and the formatting and layout in the converted file will change some. Like Google Docs, Word is suitable for those who just want rough words’ statistics on the text.

PDF Word Count Online

We would like to introduce another word count tool, Word Count for counting words in a PDF file on all operating systems including Windows, Mac, and Linux. It calculates the number of words in your novels, cover letters, blog posts, and all your written documents online for free. The statistics report will display the frequency of the most used words in a PDF. That is particularly helpful for those content marketers to understand keywords’ density and repetition rate. 

Take a look at how to perform a word count on a PDF using the online word counter.

Step 1: Right-click on your PDF document in File Explorer and choose Open with to open it in a web browser;

Step 2: Press Ctrl+A on your keyboard, right-click on the PDF, and choose Copy to copy all the text;


Step 3: Navigate to the word counter and paste the text onto the text box.


If a PDF is password protected from being copied, you will not be able to copy the text. In this case, a PDF password remover will be essential.  

How to Do PDF Word Count with Chrome Extension

Chrome extensions or plugins are small programs that you can install from Chrome Web Store to add more functionalities to the browser. They are developed to run in Chrome but not on your local desktop or other locations. Word Counter Plus is one of the best Chrome extensions enabling you to count the words in a PDF. Additionally, it tells you the number of characters as well as the average word length.

Follow the 3 steps below to do a word count in a PDF document.

Step 1: Add the word counter or calculator to your Chrome;


Step 2: Open a PDF file with the browser;

Step 3: Select all the text in the PDF by pressing the Ctrl+A shortcut key, right-click on the text and choose the extension from the pop-up menu.  


Once you have hit the extension option, the word count and other statistics will display on the screen.



Counting words in a PDF is not as simple as in a Word file, but not frustrating anymore with a proper word calculator. Furthermore, a PDF word count tool such as SwifDoo PDF allows you to perform a series of related tasks to control over your PDF better. Get the mentioned methods to do the word count in your PDF in nearly all cases.  

Frequently Asked Questions about Free Ways to Do PDF Word Count

Can you do a word count in Adobe Acrobat Reader or Acrobat Pro?

Adobe Acrobat Reader and Pro don’t have the word counting feature. You can copy the full text to the clipboard and paste them into a blank Word, Google Docs file, or other word count tools to do the word count in your PDF.



Susy has worked with PDF tools for more than 5 years. During the past time, PDF software is of huge assistance in increasing her productivity. She joined SwifDoo PDF one year ago and works as an editor now. Based on a lot of research and tests, Susy can offer users professional and practical solutions to PDF issues.

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