Utilizing a PDF Document within WordPress

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You might want to make your documents available to users without having to create a customized document using a new WordPress post. One way to do that is to create a PDF document and upload it to a separate directory or add it to your WordPress library. Both processes are very easy and quick to implement.

Before we explain how to do this, let’s first talk about PDF documents. You can create PDFs using either conversion software or plugins available for most modern office suites. If you use an office suite such as Microsoft Office, OpenOffice or LibreOffice, all have PDF creation support built-in. In whichever way you choose to create your document, make sure it is optimized for web use before uploading it to your site. Your users will appreciate it.

Method #1: Direct Upload and Link

The first method for utilizing PDF documents within WordPress is the direct upload and link method. You might choose this method if you don’t want your PDF document included in your WordPress media library. Direct uploading and linking keeps your PDF separate so that it is not affected by any changes you make within your WordPress directory.

To use this method, follow the process outlined below:

  1. Create and prepare your PDF using whatever software you have chosen.
  2. Upload your PDF to a separate document directory using an FTP program or your cPanel file manager.
  3. In the post or page where you intend to offer the PDF, create linking text and then link it to the file you just uploaded.

If you choose this method, the linking text in your post or page might be something like ‘My PDF File’. You can use the linking tool in the editor window to link the text. Your link will be something similar to: ‘http://www.your website.com/docs/MyPDFFile.pdf’.

Method #2: Adding the Document to Your Library

You might choose to use the second method if you want your PDF document added to your WordPress library or you are just unfamiliar with how to implement method #1. It is a much simpler way to utilize PDF documents.

To do so, create a new post/page or edit an existing post/page. Place your cursor wherever you want the link for your PDF to appear, but do not type any text. Instead, click where you want the cursor to be and then click on the ‘Add Media’ button at the top left of the editor. You will then:

  1. Select your PDF file from the appropriate directory or drag it to the dotted box
  2. Wait patiently for the document to be uploaded
  3. Enter the title of the document in the blank box that appears
  4. Link the title to the media file using the drop-down menu under ‘Attachment Display Settings’
  5. Click ‘Insert into Page/Post’.

The PDF document should now be in your library and linked within the text of your page or post. You need only publish or update your work to complete the process. Your users should now have direct access to your PDF document.

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