What are the benefits of a searchable PDF over a scanned PDF? It is easier for an end-user to search for a piece of information if you convert scanned PDF to a searchable PDF. A searchable PDF enhances the value of your scanned PDF by adding an invisible OCR text layer on top of the scanned image content. Normally it is created by an OCR converter software application. This text layer can be searched using the search button of your PDF reader software. You can copy text from a searchable PDF and paste it into another program like notepad or word. A scanned PDF is inaccessible for a disabled person because the "text" is just an image of a document. When you OCR convert a scanned PDF, it enhances the readability of the document and it can be used by applications like windows narrator. A searchable PDF helps an organization in the digital transformation of the company into a paperless office.
A scanned PDF is not text searchable. It is mainly because a scanned PDF is an image of a text document embedded in a PDF. There is no character or other text information in that PDF document. A scanned PDF has to go through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) in order to make this PDF text searchable. You need the help of PDF OCR software to convert this scanned PDF to a searchable PDF. During this OCR process, the text information in the scanned image is analysed by OCR software. An OCR converter compares this character information against a pre-trained character set and does the “character recognition”. After this, an invisible text layer is added on top of the PDF scanned image. This new format in the form of a “sandwich PDF” is called a “searchable PDF”. It is called a searchable PDF because the text in this scanned PDF can be searched or indexed just like any other text document.