The art of adequately explaining a thing or a process is immensely important, especially in the digital world. PDF documents allow editing in ways that make them more specific, tangible, and explanatory. The means of doing so are a handful, but the most straightforward way is to annotate a PDF.

What is a PDF Annotation

Sometimes we all need an explanation note on things we do or create, that’s for sure. PDF annotations represent different content additions that can appear helpful for every project at work or for personal needs when we need a helping hand in terms of explaining something. The best thing about PDF annotations is probably the ability to add them to a specific location in your document. You can also link annotations as attachments to a given page or location. That means you can seamlessly add another file to your PDF if you need to.

The annotation processes include valuable features like:
- adding comments to the existing content;
- stamp a PDF;
- sign a PDF;
- adding checkmarks or X marks;
- adding shapes, etc.

A good PDF annotation tool also allows you to make immediate changes in the text. This includes highlighting, strikethrough, or underlining the desired content. This is of great value when you need to emphasize parts of the content that are essential for context and you need to direct attention toward them. Or simply to serve you as a reminder of what you need to focus on in later edits.

Leaving a hint wherever necessary

Having the ability to mark precious information wherever that is necessary in the document is a really valuable tool, especially when working with PDF annotations.

In addition to everything already mentioned, PDF annotations also provide the opportunity to add images and supplementary content in the form of comments. You can easily attach them to a specific place in the document so that nothing will remain misunderstood or forgotten.

Another significant advantage a PDF annotation tool provides is the opportunity to add your personal signature. This way, you might ensure that your document, CV, or other type of official content looks professional and is ready for presentation anytime.

Adding Comments, so everything’s clear

Yes, adding comments might appear annoying to some of us, but as we mentioned, it’s better to be sure that the content is clear than to leave things to fate or presumption. So if you are wondering how to annotate a PDF, the answer should include the fundamentals. And among them is the option of adding comments to parts of the PDF content. Comments can emphasize and remark on information essential to yourself or readers.

How to Annotate PDF files - a step-by-step guide

Let’s start with the basics. As we mentioned using comments is a straight-to-the-point moment. Comments are a pillar, a stronghold when you want to collaborate and annotate a PDF. And PDF Extra has the means to help you with that. So here’s what to do if you’re using the software on your Windows device:

1. Open your file with PDF Extra.
2. Click the Annotate tab.

add shapes

3. Click comment.

add comments

4. Click anywhere in the document where you need to insert a comment.
5. Type the content in the pop-up note.

add comments

You can also use an alternative method: on the Home tab, click Comment > click the location where you need to position your comment > type the content in the pop-up note.

Working with text when annotating a PDF

Yes, we believe that text is quite essential when you need to depict, educate, or simply present ideas. But simple text might not be enough when annotating a PDF since you leverage additional techniques like highlighting, underlining, etc. Hence, the necessity to have access to such annotation tools is vital.

Here’s how to annotate a PDF by editing text in PDF Extra:

1. Open your document and click the Select button in the Home tab.

highlight strikethrough or underline text

2. Select the text you want to modify.

add comments

3. Right-click on the selected text.
4. Choose from the annotation options in the floating tab menu.

highlight strikethrough or underline text

From here on, you can seamlessly cut, copy or edit the selected content. You can further tinker with the text formatting by choosing the Edit Text option from the floating menu. Also, you can toggle between a plentiful number of fonts and engage with scaling, font color, and sizing via the dropdowns in the Editing Tools tab. Here you can also change the rotation of the selected content clockwise and counterclockwise, without the risk of getting vertigo, of course.

Sealing the deal - Customize your work by adding a stamp to a PDF

Along with all other types of PDF annotations one could find helpful is the option to stamp your PDF. This way, if necessary, you can add some more personal customizations to a document or when working with any file.

When you open a file in PDF Extra > click the Annotate tab > click the Stamp button > click on the predefined stamps to add one to your document > click where you want to position the stamp annotation > use the dragging points to resize the stamp > move the stamp in the document, left-click and drag to the desired position.

stamp a pdf

More is more - how to annotate a PDF by adding attachments

To annotate a PDF, you can also insert additional files. Using PDF Extra, the process flows effortlessly like a mountain stream. Start with opening your document with PDF Extra > click Annotate > click Attach File > left-click where you want the attachment markup to appear > PDF Extra will open a directory for you to select a file to attach > click the file and confirm with Open.

Add attachments to a PDF

Add attachments to a PDF

Add attachments to a PDF

Furthermore, you can find all your attachments in the document by clicking Edit and then Attach File. The software will display a field on the left of your screen with all the inserted files.

What are the advantages of annotating a PDF

Some of the touchstone ideas of working with PDF documents are those of being more compatible, compact, efficient, and precise in your concepts or work projects. Therefore, adding files and making edits to the content in the form of PDF annotations is essential. Moreover, when you insert annotations, you can augment the entire content with additional files or even redesign it to consume much less disk space on your devices.

One of the essential points when annotating PDFs is improving your communication with others who might work with the same document. Adding comments, for example, will easily highlight a paragraph or an image that needs more attention from your colleagues. Furthermore, you can find all the added remarks in the comment section - easy for you to explore and answer.

Comments reduce the risk of misinterpretation and lead to more productive work with collaborators.

Being more interactive in your work is possible with the help of annotations and PDF collaboration tools. Among them, we can easily include free drawing in the document, inserting forms like rectangles, ellipses, and lines, and entering text boxes wherever needed in the file. Alongside those, we can also attach files, snapshots, etc.

Additional recommendations and tips when annotating a PDF Extra document

Counting on PDF annotations like notes and comments, attached files, images, stamps, signatures, or other types of annotations will definitely highlight the fundamental parts of the content. Thus, all crucial aspects in the document, like quotes, statistics, specifying terms, data, links, etc., will surely be noticed when you or your collaborators go through the PDF.

However, we should remark that there is an essential tip for PDF annotation when adding a signature. If you want to simply put a predefined signature to your file, you have to switch to the Fill and Sign tab and click on the Sign button. This will allow you to design your signature, which you can save for future usage. However, a digital signature is a more sophisticated form of a PDF annotation. You can find this feature in the Protect tab in PDF Extra. When signing your work digitally, you introduce a higher level of security to it by adding a digital certificate to the file. This certificate contains encrypted information unique to the document's owner.

Add attachments to a PDF

The vital thing to know about all PDF annotations, though, is that they can improve your productivity when working with any type of PDF document. The ability to mark something as important, add attachments, or sign a document is of great value, which you are bound to realize the moment you start working on your PDF project.