With the world changing rapidly around us, online digital tools are becoming more than just a nice supplement to offline communication and rather its necessary alternative. But not all the beloved digital solutions are up to the task.
PDF is one of the most popular digital formats that has been around since forever. But it’s far from perfect. It’s bulky, it’s dull, and it’s hardly able to satisfy all the technical whimsies of today (we all are spoilt by progress, after all).
We won’t suggest ditching the format, though. Instead, why not build upon it? Why not make it more innovative, more appealing—more interactive?
In this article, we will tell you how to make your PDF interactive with the smartest interactive PDF software. And we will show you some awesome interactive PDF examples, too.
What is an interactive PDF
An interactive PDF is a PDF document that is enhanced with various types of multimedia: videos, external links, GIF animations, etc. Instead of using just plain text and pictures, you get to convey your message through different formats and via different tools, be it a link to a relevant source or a quick video guide embedded right into a page of your interactive ebook. Such things entertain readers and capture their attention, allowing you to make a more lasting impression.
However, there are downsides, too. First, making your PDF interactive is not easy if you don’t have prior experience in using Adobe InDesign or other similar software.
Second, the format is still not good enough. Interactivity makes your PDF catalogs, magazines, pitch decks, student handbooks, and newsletters more engaging and eye-catching, sure, but as for being user-friendly? Not so much. Even interactive, a PDF file is still not very mobile-ready and your client will think twice before downloading it on their smartphone in case they have already reached their data usage limit.
So, how to make a PDF interactive and mobile-friendly, without having to brave a steep learning curve?
The answer is, you turn a PDF into an online flipbook.
What are online flipbooks and why they rule
Basically, an online flipbook is an interactive HTML5 publication converted from a plain PDF via FlippingBook. It has a look-and-feel of a real-life book: you read it by turning its pages instead of scrolling it.
See how it looks:
A flipbook is not a PDF per se, more of a separate digital format. But you can view it as a smart new way of presenting your PDF. Ultimately, all you have to do to convert a simple PDF into a digital flipbook is upload it to FlippingBook and get a link to your brand new flipbook in one click.
Why flipbooks, though? Why choose them to make your PDF interactive?
First, there are lots of useful features that will help you turn your PDF into exactly whatever it is you want—from a stylish interactive online magazine for wide distribution to a private interactive annual report, from a digital workbook to a corporate brochure or even a lead generation tool.
Here’s what you can do to your PDF in FlippingBook:
- add videos and links to it
- add pop-up images and GIFs
- add branding
- insert a lead capture form
- choose password protection
All of that requires no prior coding or design experience. If you’re thinking about generating leads within flipbooks or from your website, check out our article about the best lead generation software and choose what suits your needs best.
Further advantages of flipbooks over PDFs and other digital and non-digital formats include:
- Easy sharing: you can share your flipbook as a link (instead of a bulky attachment) or embed it right into a website for a seamless viewing experience.
- Tracking & analytics: you can learn how many views and viewers your flipbook gets, what content readers find the most engaging, which links have been clicked, and more. You are even able to track any client's individual interactions with your content through email notifications.
- Simple navigation: with text search, table of contents, and thumbnails, your readers will have no problem finding the information they need in your flipbook.
- Easy updates: no need to resend a PDF whenever you have to change your content or fix a typo—you can update your flipbook as often as you want, and the link to it will stay the same.
- Mobile support: online flipbooks open fast and work flawlessly on any device.
Finally—as you’ve already seen—flipbooks look really smart, especially next to an ordinary PDF. Check this out!
If you’re still not convinced that interactive flipbooks are the way to go, we’d suggest trying them out first. Create your own flipbook from PDF right now and see how interactive you can make it!
Are you a pro in making interactive documents or is it a new format for you? Tell us in the comments below.