5 Free Ways to Convert Blog Posts & Documents to PDF

This is a guest post by Jamie Harrop. Jamie is a writer for Cogniview, the leading producer of PDF to excel conversion tools. He can also be found at his personal blog, discussing blogging, business and customer service.

From sharing PDF versions of blog posts via email, to ebooks and plugin documentation, PDF’s are widely used throughout the blogosphere. They provide a “Read Me” only interface that can be easily downloaded or viewed within a browser, viewed on smart phones, or even printed for offline reading. It’s this versatility that gives PDF’s the power they have today.

It’s only right, then, that we find out how to create PDF’s to aid in our blog promotion and management. Here are five ways to easily create PDF ebooks and documents.

PDF24 – WordPress Plugin – Convert Blog Posts

PDF24 is an excellent WordPress plugin that allows your readers to email a PDF version of your blog post to their own email address or to a friend. This is an fantastic take on the ‘Send to a Friend’ plugins.

The plugin places a short email address form below all your blog posts. Find out more about this plugin.

Bullzip PDF Printer – Convert Microsoft Documents

Bullzip is tailored to convert Microsoft applications to PDF. Like many PDF converters, it acts as a printer on your computer, so to convert a document all you have to do is go to File > Print and choose the PDF converter from your list of possible printers.

Bullzip comes complete with a wide range of features, including the ability to choose different quality settings for different uses (ebook, screen or print), add and edit watermark text and password protect the PDF. Find out more.

CutePDF – Create PDF Forms for Digital Completion

Another free option that installs itself as a printer on your Windows PC, CutePDF is recommended by many. Whereas many free PDF converters add watermarks to your final file, and bombard you with adverts upon conversion, CutePDF doesn’t. No adverts. No mess. Just one very simple and easy to use PDF converter. Find out more.

Primo PDF

Primo PDF is one of the oldest PDF converters, and is able to convert over 300 different file types. Just like other converters, this program sets itself up as a printer on your PC.

Creating PDF’s on a Mac

Of course, I can’t forget the Apple fan boys (I know plenty of you are reading). For those not aware, Mac’s have a built in PDF converter (they’re always more advanced than us Windows folk!). To convert a file to PDF using a Mac:

In OS X 10.4 or later:

  • Choose File -> Print.
  • Click on the PDF button in the bottom left of the “Print” Screen.
  • Select the option Save as PDF…

In OS X 10.3 or earlier:

  • Open the document you want to convert to PDF in the native Mac OS X application.
  • Choose File -> Print, and continues as follows:
    • Choose Save As PDF (Mac OS X v10.2.x), or click Preview and do one of the following (Mac OS X v10.1.x):
    • If Acrobat opens the preview, choose File -> Save As, and then choose Adobe PDF Files from the Format pop-up menu.
    • If Preview opens the preview, choose File -> Save As PDF.
    • Specify a filename and location, and then click Save.

PDF files really are a useful asset for bloggers. I’ve seen a huge explosion in recent months from people downloading audio podcast versions of my text blog posts so they can listen and learn from them while offline and away from the computer. PDF’s are a great alternative to audio, to allow your readers to learn and experience your brand while away from the office.

How often do you use PDF’s? Do you provide a way for your readers to convert your blog posts to PDF? Let us know in the comments!