How to Share a PDF File: The Ultimate Guide

share pdf as link facebook

Short for Portable Document Format, PDF is one of the most widely used formats for sending and receiving documents online. PDF documents have a .pdf file extension. A PDF preserves the document's original formatting and prevents the recipient from making changes.

This file format is, therefore, ideal for sharing professional documents such as contracts, financial records, reports, and so on. Many professionals are required to share PDFs online. Sharing a PDF online is a doddle, but sharing it safely and quickly can be a little difficult.

In this guide, we'll walk you through how to share a PDF file online securely and conveniently. Read on.

How to share a PDF file

There are several ways to share a PDF file over the internet. Here are some of the easiest and most secure ways to distribute PDF documents online.


Email is downright one of the easiest and most secure ways to share a PDF file. To share a PDF via email, it needs to be saved on your computer. All you have to do is open a new email on your email client and click on the attach option.

Browse your device and select the PDF file you want to share and it will be uploaded to your email. Enter the email recipients, add subject and body of the email, and click send. It's a fairly similar process whether you are using Gmail, Outlook, or any other email provider.


A significant portion of file sharing today is done by taking advantage of the cloud. This file sharing trend is attributable to the widespread use of cloud storage in the last few years. Here are some of the cloud services that you can use to share PDF files.

Google Drive

Google Drive allows you to share PDF files and all sorts of files securely and conveniently. Sharing PDF documents on Google Drive is easier than you think. To share a PDF file via Google Drive, open the file then:

  1. Click on the three dots at the top right corner of the page and choose share.
  2. Enter the recipient's email address.
  3. Click on the pencil icon next to the email address to set the level of access you want to grant the recipient.
  4. Choose 'Done' to share the PDF file. You can also share the PDF as a link by choosing 'Copy link.'

As you can see, Google Drive lets you control the way other people engage with the files you share. You can restrict access to viewing only or grant full permission for the recipient to make edits and other adjustments to your PDF document.


You can also share PDF files using Dropbox. When you share a PDF file via Dropbox, the recipient receives an email with the link to the PDF document. To share a PDF file using Dropbox:

  1. Sign in to Dropbox and locate the file you'd like to share.
  2. Hover your cursor over the file and a share button will appear. Click on it.
  3. Enter the recipient's email address and hit 'Send.'

Just like Google Drive, you can adjust Dropbox to meet your needs. By default, when you share a file via Dropbox, it can be edited. However, you can choose whether you want the recipient to be able to edit the document or just read it.

Sharing the file itself vs. sharing a link to the file

Cloud services such as Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive allow you to share a link rather than sending the physical PDF file. Sharing a link to the file offers several advantages over the latter. For instance, sharing a link reduces bandwidth requirements significantly and is easier overall.


As you can see, there are many ways to share a PDF online. When dealing with large PDF files, we recommend compressing the PDFs beforehand to make it easier to upload and share. You can use free compression tools such as WinZip to compress large PDF files for online sharing.

Need to Download WinZip