How to Add PDF Files in WordPress

Step-by-step guide on how to upload, add, embed, and display downloadable PDf files in your WordPress website for free & best plugins for it

Updated on July 16, 2023
How to Add PDF Files in WordPress

There can be times when you would love to embed a PDF file in your WordPress post or page. A book author may want to give readers a free copy. To add product catalogs on your website. To share your designs in PDF format with clients. You may be running a travel agency and want to display the itinerary of the tour packages. However, there is a problem! In this step-by-step guide, you’ll learn how to upload, add, embed and display downloadable PDf files in your WordPress website for free & best plugins for it.

Though WordPress allows you to embed audios, videos and images. It is not possible to embed PDF files in your posts and pages. This feature is not available so far. Maybe it will be present in the future. There are many scenarios in which you could use PDF, and if you want your PDFs to look nice and proper, make sure to use a PDF Editor tool.

If you want to add a PDF file, you can upload the file using the Add Media option. Insert the link to that file, and it will be on your page. And your visitors can either download it or view the file in the web browser by leaving your website.

However, what if you want to embed PDF files in your posts? So, let your visitors view it without leaving your website? Is there any solution to that? The short answer is YES. So in this post, we’ll show how you can embed a PDF file in your WordPress post or page. In addition, with or without using a plugin. To list.

How to Embed PDF Files in WordPress

The beauty of WordPress is that you can do almost anything without writing a line of code. All you have to do is simply installing a plugin for a particular type of functionality. There are many plugins to help you with the process of embedding a PDF file in WordPress.

The one that we used and like is the PDF Embedder plugin. It is a free plugin already available for download from the WordPress plugin directory. There are others that I’ll mention below as well, but this plugin will be the main focus of this post. Keep reading this step-by-step guide on how to upload, add, embed, and display downloadable PDf files in your WordPress website for free & best plugins for it.

Installing PDF Embedder Plugin

The process of installing this plugin is straightforward. You can install it just like the way you do with any other plugin. Go to WordPress Dashboard > Plugins > Add New. Type the name “PDF Embedder.” The very first result will be the plugin. Just click on install and activate the plugin. You can also download it and upload the zip file to your WordPress site.

PDF WordPress Plugin Setup

Once you have installed the plugin, you can go directly and embed PDF files right away. But if you want to make sure that the embedded files appear as you want, here are a few things to configure before embedding your pdf file.

You can configure the width and height to appear as you want. When using Max, it will display in 100% of the width and/or 100% of the height. You can also customize the toolbar available. This toolbar will enable the visitors to zoom in and out and go to the next page or the previous one. Customize its position and hover.

Make it display at the top of the document only, at the bottom only, or both. You can also make it visible only by hovering over the paper or always available.

In the instructions, they show you how to override the settings for a specific file easily.

[pdf-embedder url=”” width=”700″ toolbar=”top” toolbarfixed=”off”]

For this link, for example, we use the width to be 700px, the toolbar to appear at the top, and not sticky. And if you have access to the paid license, you will see more configuration options, although that may not be necessary for most of you.

Embed PDF Files To WordPress Posts or Pages

You can easily use this plugin with the Gutenberg blocks or classic editor.

Here is how to add it in the Gutenberg editor: First, click on the Add Block icon, find the PDF Embedder block, then select it. Secondly, upload your PDF file or select it from already available files. Finally, you are done.

How to do it in the classic editor? Very simple. Just add the PDF file like you do to add a picture or video. Click on the Add Media button, upload/select your pdf file, click on insert into post button, and you are good to go. A shortcode will automatically be created, and the PDF will appear embedded directly. Step-by-step guide on how to upload, add, embed, and display downloadable PDf files in your WordPress website for free & best plugins for it.

Best WordPress PDF Viewer Plugins

Now that you know how to use the PDF Embedder plugin, here are other options you might want to consider adding to the list to embed your PDF file to your readers.

PDF Viewer for WordPress

PDF Viewer is one of the WP plugins available on the Code Canyon marketplace that allows you to view PDF files directly on your WordPress site. You can personalize the look with your log, and have complete control over the toolbar to show what to display and what not to display. It is a great option to consider if you are after a premium option that gives you complete control over everything.

Google Drive Embedder Plugin: Embed PDF in WordPress Guide

Google Drive Embedder is a free option available on the WordPress marketplace directory. It allows you to embed files directly from your Google Drive to your site or page. You will be using the Google read-only interactive viewer. This plugin is great if you have your files on Google Docs. But doesn’t give you many options to control.

Real3D FlipBook WordPress Plugin

Want to get a little bit fancy and show your PDF file as a magazine where you either have the same experience of flipping through magazines? Look no further because this plugin helps you do so. It is a powerful 3D flipbook display that allows you to display your PDF or images as flipbooks.

Seriously. You have complete control over everything without using Flash, and it is also responsive. It is available on the Code Canyon Marketplace.

PDF.js Viewer Shortcode

This lightweight plugin utilizes the PDF.js library to display PDF files on your WordPress site. It provides a customizable viewer that can be easily inserted into your posts or pages via a shortcode. So, a good way on how to upload PDF files in WordPress.

Embed Any Document

With this plugin, you can embed PDF files and other documents like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. It supports Google Docs Viewer for a smooth document display.

Flowpaper (Outdated) Honorable Mention

Flowpaper is a free plugin available on the WordPress plugin directory that enables you to embed your PDF files as flipbooks as well. It is a great plugin to consider if you don’t want to go with the premium option mentioned above, although the customization features aren’t much here.

Wonder PDF Embed (Outdated) Honorable Mention

Wonder PDF is another free option to display PDF files directly on your WordPress site. You can use it with its own lightbox popup to display your PDF file in a lightbox popup which might be a cool feature to consider.

Final Words

Adding a PDF file directly on your WordPress site is not an issue anymore. Now, you have a complete step by step guide to finally embed your pdf file(s) directly on your site. Moreover, you have other options to consider, including the ability to display your PDF file. As a flipbook in an incredible way. Which plugin did you use? Share the link to your post below with the plugin that you used.