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How to Add Shapes to PDF

Why do we need to add shapes to PDF? Well, shapes hold great significance if you want to highlight a point. If an already-created PDF does not have a specific piece of information, you can add different shapes in the PDF folder and add points to it. This way, you will never be deprived of adding data to any PDF file. To enlighten the readers on this topic and introduce annotating tools, we have discussed the following points.

Part 1. How to Add shapes to PDF on Windows

Adding shapes to your PDF is significant as it makes the points prominent in your document. Here, we will discover how to add shapes in PDF on Windows:

Method 1. Add Shapes to PDF with UPDF

UPDF is a free PDF reader and annotator helping you make annotations on PDF, including inserting shapes. To add shapes to PDF, you can follow the steps below.

Step 1. Upload Your PDF File

Launch UPDF and import your PDF file by tapping on the "Open File" button.

open pdf with updf

Step 2. Add Shapes to PDF

Now you can click the "Comment" button on the top and then select the "Shape" icon. After that, you can select one of the shape to insert as you desired. You can also change the properties of the shape, such as style, thickness, fill color, opacity, and color.

add shape to PDF

Metthod 2. Add Shapes to PDF in Adobe Acrobat

With Adobe Acrobat, you are now able to alter the text and images on the PDF file without changing the format of your file. If you want to fix any typos on your PDF or add a few important notes to the file, you can use the comment box feature. Moreover, it also enables users to add shapes in PDF to make the content more prominent.

Here, we will acknowledge the steps involved in adding shapes to your PDF document with Adobe Acrobat:

Step 1: The first step requires you to open Adobe Acrobat. There will be an option for “My Computer” on the left side of the panel. Now, click on the “Browse” button and import your relevant PDF file.

open pdf adobe

Step 2: Click the “Tools” feature and further click on “Comment” in order to access the “Comment” toolbar. Go to the Drawing Tools menu and tap on the "Drawing Tools" icon. Further, choose "Expand Drawing tools."

add shapes to pdf adobe acrobat

Step 3:  Now, there will be many shapes, including rectangles, arrows, ovals, lines, polygons, etc. Select your desired shape.

insert shapes in pdf adobe

Step 4:  After selecting the relevant shape, you can add it anywhere in the PDF. For writing a note in shape, click on it. If you want to change its properties, including sharpness, style, and opacity, right-click on the shape and select "Properties."

add shapes in pdf adobe

Method 3. Insert Shapes to PDF with Soda PDF

Soda PDF is a hub for editing, annotating, and organizing PDF documents. This software has made it super easy to add, modify, and remove texts from PDFs. If you want to highlight some points in your file, Soda PDF will offer the option of adding comment boxes. The feature of adding shapes in Soda PDF allows you to insert shapes on the pages and write in them.

The following steps will teach you how to add shape to a PDF with the assistance of Soda PDF:

Step 1: Firstly, you have to import your PDF file into Soda PDF by clicking on the “Open PDF” button. Now, head over to the “Comment” tab to add the shapes to your PDF.

how to add shape to pdf sodapdf

Step 2: Now, tap on the “Line” or “Oval” shape button to expand the shape options and choose your favorite shape. After that, draw anywhere on your document where you want to add the shape.

add circle to pdf

Step 3:  Finally, shapes will be added to the document. If you want to customize, select the “Shape” on your PDF, and it will open the “Properties Panel.” Now, change the color, width, and style according to your choice.

Part 2. How to Add shapes in PDF on Mac

We have discussed how to add shapes to PDFs on Windows with the help of Adobe Acrobat and Soda PDF. Now, let’s learn the process involved in adding shapes to a PDF on Mac:

1. UPDF for Mac

updf pdf annoattor

Editing the text content or making it attractive for the readers is not so difficult for MacBook users, as UPDF enables them to edit and annotate the PDF smoothly. You can highlight the content, remove unnecessary lines, add important paragraphs, and organize your PDF, all with the help of one software.

The UPDF also assists in the annotation of the PDF by offering different shapes that you can add to your file and write content in it. Follow the given steps below to insert shape in PDF with the UPDF software solution for Mac:

Step 1: Access UPDF for Mac

Access the UPDF interface on your MacBook and click on the “Open File” button to open the relevant PDF file.

Step 2: Choose the Comment Icon

Now, you need to click on the “Comment” button from the top toolbar. Then you will see many annotating options.

comment button in updf

Step 2: Add Shapes to PDF

There will be an option for “Shapes” in the upper corner of the interface. Choose the fill color and border color. Then, click on the shape and draw it on the PDF page.

add shapes to pdf

Step 3: Save the Annotated File

 Now, choose the “File” button from the upper corner of the interface and further choose “Save” to save the file at the destination.

how to add a shape to a pdf

2. Add Shapes to PDF on Mac Preview

An all-in-one PDF solution for Mac users – Preview helps students as well as professionals to edit the already-created PDFs. There are numerous tools offered by Preview to annotate a PDF file. You can use the text boxes, shapes, and underline tools to highlight the texts and add to their significance.

Preview will allow you to add shapes and customize them by changing their properties. You can increase or decrease the size or change the color of the shape. Now, let’s discuss the procedure of PDF add shapes to your PDF on Mac with Preview:

Step 1: To add shapes to your PDF on Mac, press the “Control + Click” button on the relevant PDF. Now, click on “Open With” and further choose the “Preview” option.

open pdf with preview

Step 2: Your PDF file will be opened on your Mac. Click on the “Markup toolbar” from the upper side of the interface. You will see different shapes on the toolbar.

how to add shapes to a pdf mac

Step 3: Click on any shape and drag it to the PDF where you want to add it.

add shapes to pdf mac

Part 3. How to Insert shapes in PDF online

If you don’t want to download the tool on your device, we have another simpler option for you. In this part, we will discuss the online PDF solution for users to learn how to add shapes to PDF online.

1. Insert Shapes in PDF with Smallpdf

This online solution to edit and annotate PDFs has made it simpler and easier for people to edit their documents and save them. There are several annotations provided by Smallpdf. You can add shapes and comment boxes or highlight the sentences to make them prominent. Here, we have provided the guide on how to add shapes to PDF with Smallpdf online tool:

Step 1: Open Smallpdf from your browser and access its “PDF Editor tool. Now, locate the "Choose Files" button and click on it to upload the file.

open file in smallpdf

Step 2: When the file is uploaded, you will recognize the “Shape” icon above the PDF. Select any shape from Rectangle, Ellipse, Line, and Arrow.

insert shapes in pdf online

Step 3: Draw the shape at any place in the document. You can also change the fill color and border color or make duplicates of the shape.

add circle to pdf online

2. Add Shapes to PDF in PDFescape 

Numerous features are embedded in a single online software – PDFescape. This tool enables the user to annotate their PDF documents and save the edited file on their device. With PDFescape, you can even protect your file with a strong password and ensure that no one accesses it. Creating different and attractive shapes on the PDF encourages highlighting a few points in the document.

You can write inside those shapes and change their properties to create distinctive shapes on the document. By following the given steps, you can insert shapes in PDF with the online tool PDFescape:

Step 1: Access the online website of PDFescape and click on the “Free Online” button on the main page.

open pdfescape

Step 2: Now, choose the “Upload PDF to PDFescape” to import the PDF on PDFescape. At the leftmost side of the page, click on “Insert” to see the available shapes.

open pdf in escape

Step 3: Click on the specific shape and now tap on the PDF where you want to insert the shape. You can change the opacity from the “Object Properties” option.

add rectangle to pdf

Part 4. The Best Free PDF Annotator for Adding Shapes to PDF

We have learned the online, Windows, and Mac solutions for adding shapes to PDF documents. However, UPDF is the best and top-notch annotator available for adding shapes to a file. You cannot only add different shapes at different places in your PDF, but the software also assists in highlighting and underlining the content.

This annotator will help in adjusting the page layout of the file according to the size of the screen. Moreover, you can also add the bookmark on PDF for navigating it easily. If you want to find a specific line in the document, you can search for it and find it. Most importantly, this annotator encrypts your PDF document and allows you to lock it with a strong password.

With its easy-to-use interface, you can easily edit and organize your PDF and save the edited version on your devices.


The article concludes with an introduction to popular Mac, Windows, and Online applications that add shapes to PDF. We have discussed the significance of adding shapes to a document as it highlights the content. UPDF stands out as it annotates, edits, and organizes PDFs all in one place. You can add comments in the shapes to insert important points in the file.