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How To Compress A PDF For Email

Large PDFs can be a challenge to send over email. Although this is an everyday task that you will likely need to do many times a month, if your document is too large it will be rejected by the server. As such, it’s worthwhile first compressing the PDF.

Whether you’re sending your document to a family member or friend, or you’re directing it to a client or colleague, sending it over email is a convenient and quick way to get the job done. But to ensure it reaches its destination as swiftly as possible, you may want to compress the PDF's file size.

Use an online tool and - hey presto! Your document will be on its way to your recipient in no time. This article will outline a step-by-step guide to reducing your PDF for email, and provide you with some top tips to bear in mind. Finally, we’ll offer alternative methods to reducing the size of your document for different devices and operating systems. If you’re ready to get started, let’s dive in!

How To Compress A PDF For Email Step-By-Step

FormatPDF can help you resize your documents for free and without having to download any additional programs. It’s a simple process that will take a few seconds. Then, you simply download your converted document.

If you’re ready to get started, read the step-by-step instructions below.

  1. Go to https://www.formatpdf.com/en/compress-pdf/
  2. Click on “Select PDF file” to upload the document that you’d like to work on. Alternatively, you can drag and drop the file into the area that states, “Or drag and drop the PDF here”.
  3. Once you’ve uploaded the document, you’ll be presented with three options to the right of the page:
    1. Maximum compression.
    2. Recommended compression.
    3. Low compression.
  4. If you want the best balance of quality and reduction, then opt for “Recommended compression”. Otherwise, make your decision based on your desired result.
  5. Once you’re happy, click the red “Compress PDF” button and the tool will get to work with your request.
  6. In a few seconds, your document will be flattened. Click on “Download” to receive your document.

compress pdf mobile

What You Need To Know About Compressing A PDF

You may want to consider the following tips before you get started with editing. Read on for a few points to bear in mind:

  • To check the size of a PDF, locate it in your PC’s document viewer and right-click, then click “Properties”.
  • If you’re using FormatPDF, then you can resize files that have already been optimized, though you won’t be able to achieve a greater level of size reduction than the existing level. This is because the first time around the file is reduced by the maximum amount.
  • You may wish to reduce multiple documents at the same time, and the good news is you can with FormatPDF. Other apps and programs may or may not offer this option.
  • As well as compressing the PDF, you may wish to write on it, split its pages into separate documents, or reorganize the page order. You can do all this and more with our tools.

Alternatives to Compress A PDF For Email

Compressing your document before sending it by email is a great way to ensure that it doesn’t get rejected by the server. To ensure your file reaches its destination safely, you’ll want to reduce it. Although FormatPDF provides this service for free and without any additional software or programs required, you may wish to explore other options.

We’ll explore some of the best alternative options you can use to reduce your file, whether you’re using Windows, Mac, a tablet or a smartphone.

Options To Compress A PDF For Email On Your PC

Whether you’re using a Windows, Mac or Linux operating system, there are many different tools available. Let’s examine these options in further detail.


Windows users can use Adobe Acrobat to condense their files. Below you will find step-by-step instructions for reducing your file.

  1. Open the Adobe Acrobat online compressor on Adobe.com.
  2. Find the large textbox with the text “Compress PDF size”, then the blue button labeled “Select a file”.
  3. Locate the document that you wish to condense by clicking “Select a file” or using the drag and drop to move it into the “Compress PDF” field.
  4. Select the compression level from high, medium or low, depending on your desired result. The general rule is the higher the compression level the smaller the file, and the lower the compression the higher the quality of your file.
  5. Once your file is ready, select “Download” to access your file.


If you have a very large document, Mac users can perform their task using the default image and PDF viewing program, Preview.

Open your file by double-clicking it or right-clicking and heading to “Open With” > “Preview”. Then click “File” > “Export”, and in the “Quartz Filter” drop-down box, select “Reduce File Size” to make the transformation.


For Linux users, it’s a little more complex to condense files. You can use the command line (a program that takes in commands) or an online tool to complete your task. Similar to Windows users, Linux users can use the online Adobe editor. Follow the steps outlined above to complete your task.

Options To Compress A PDF On Your Smartphone

You can reduce your documents using an Android or iPhone device using FormatPDF, as it works on any device. However, if you’re looking for an alternative, you might want to try the below suggestions.


iPhone users will need to download a third-party app to complete their task. You can search for a “PDF Compressor” app and download it from the app store. Locate your file, click on “Share” and then select the compression app you’ve just installed. Follow the on-screen instructions to reduce your file.


Android users can download the Adobe Acrobat Reader app, which provides a compression tool for a fee. To reduce your file download the app, sign into your account and select the “Files” menu to locate your document. Navigate to the three icon dots in the top right of your screen and in the menu click on “Compress PDF”.

Becky is a freelance tech writer with over 8 years' experience writing for print and online. She is often found heavily caffeinated and accompanied by a laptop occupying local coffee shops, bars, co-working spaces and, frankly, anywhere she can get a strong cup of coffee. She enjoys collaborating on different projects ranging from tech to travel and everything in between!
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