How to convert Google Sheets to PDF automatically

Google Sheets is a cloud-based web application well known for its amazing sharing and collaborative capabilities. But when we want to share specific data with specific people, sharing an entire spreadsheet isn’t the most effective solution. Because of this, converting your data from Google Sheets to PDF is still the most popular alternative. Sheetgo offers a way to convert your Google Sheets into PDF automatically, not only saving you time but also increasing productivity across your entire organization.

Let’s say I work in the HR department and our company is taking on several new interns. These interns will be working within various departments across the entire organization.

I have a Google Sheet file containing all of their personal information and internship details. I want to create a contract for each individual and send it as a PDF to share with the new interns. I can’t just share the entire spreadsheet file – it contains personal information and it also won’t provide the correct format for the contracts.

I need to find a way to transfer each row of individual data, format this correctly, turn it into a PDF, and share it with the corresponding intern. Luckily, with the Sheetgo app, I can achieve this and more, completely automatically.

Let’s discover how you can successfully convert your Google Sheets to PDF automatically using the Sheetgo web app.

Why convert Google Sheets to PDF automatically?

There are many reasons why you may want to convert your Google Sheets files into PDF.

Here are just a few:

  • More “share-friendly”: The PDF has maintained its popularity throughout the years due to its universal compatibility and its ability to compress when sharing, as well as the fact it leaves no digital footprint – perfect for confidential documents. For these reasons, the PDF is much more “share-friendly” than any other file format.
  • Save hours of time: By converting Google Sheets to PDF automatically, you can save hours of time that you’d otherwise spend manually generating and sharing your PDF. As a result, you can spend this saved time on more important tasks or aspects within your business.
  • Printer-friendly format: When you print a Google Sheets file, the formatting may change, causing the data to appear jumbled or hard to read. If you convert a Google Sheets file to PDF, you can preserve the formatting, and the data will look just as it did on your screen.
  • Accessibility: Anyone will be able to open the file with a PDF reader. PDFs can be opened by anyone using a PDF reader, which is a widely available software, unlike Google Sheets that may require a Google account.

With Sheetgo, there are even more benefits to this automated process. Let’s take a look at those now.

Why use Sheetgo?

Using the Sheetgo web app, you can create an entirely automated workflow that carried out your desired actions from start to finish. Sheetgo is able to identify the rows of data within your Google Sheet, transfer and add this data to any document you wish, convert the document into a PDF, and then send it to its recipient. Once the workflow has been set up, everything will be done automatically – all you need to do is provide your spreadsheet full of your data, and the document template you wish to add your data to.

To find out in more detail exactly how document generation and PDF conversion works in Sheetgo, check out the support page.

With this, Sheetgo offers many more benefits when converting your Google Sheets to PDF:

  • Maintain data privacy: Protect your confidential data with Sheetgo. Avoid having to share entire files and instead only share the information you choose.
  • Complete customization: Create custom document templates for your data, from contracts to invoices and much more.
  • No human error: Sheetgo automates the entire process for you, avoiding any risk of human error.
  • Schedule automatic transfers: You can automate transfers for your workflow. Whenever your source data is updated, the rest of your connection will be updated too.

Now that we understand the benefits of using Sheetgo to convert Google Sheets to PDF, let’s go through a step-by-step on how exactly to do this.

How to convert Google Sheets to PDF automatically

Step 1: Sign up for Sheetgo

To sign up for Sheetgo is easy. Simply click the blue button below.

Simply log in with your Google, Microsoft, or Dropbox account to get started.

Step 2: Prepare your spreadsheet data and document template

Before you begin creating your workflow, you need to have two files ready: your source spreadsheet, and your document template.

Let’s look at these in more detail.

Source data file:

Your source data file should contain all the dynamic data you need in order to create your desired document. In this example, here is my Google Sheets file containing all the intern information that I need to have in order to create the contracts and convert them as PDF.

You should name each column clearly, as these will become the dynamic tags in your document template to which your spreadsheet data will be transferred. Each row of data in your spreadsheet will create a new document.

Google Sheets to PDF 0
Document template:

You also need a document template created in Google Docs.

This should contain two things:

  1. The foundational content that you want to include across all of your documents
  2. Dynamic tags, e.g. {{first name}}, where you want to insert your dynamic data from your source file (these dynamic tags should be the same as the column names from your spreadsheet)

In my example, I have created a Google Doc that has the foundational content of the main contract text, as well as variable placeholders for each intern’s personal information.

Google Sheets to PDF 1

To find out more about how to prepare document templates properly, read our article on how to generate documents with Sheetgo on our help center.

Step 3: Create your workflow

Now that your source file and document templates are ready, it’s time to begin creating your workflow.

Open the Sheetgo web app. On the homepage, select + New workflow then Connect files in order to build your workflow from scratch. Rename your new workflow at the top. In my example, I will name my new workflow “Internship contracts 2022”.

Google Sheets to PDF 2

Step 4: Connect your source file to your document template

You can opt to add single or multiple source files to begin your workflow. In this case, I want to add my Google Sheet, so I will select Single file, then upload my spreadsheet. Don’t forget to choose the tab where your data is located in your file.

Once finished, press Next.

Google Sheets to PDF 3

Now it’s time to add your document template. Under the ‘Generate’ section, select Documents. Upload your document template. You can change the title of your documents to clearly identify each different document that will be created using your source data. In my example, I can use the dynamic tags from my source data to identify each contract by intern name. To do this, I can type the document title as “Internship contract – {{First name}} {{Last name}}.

Finally, choose the destination file for these new documents.

Once completed, click Next.

Google Sheets to PDF 4

This connection will allow every new row of your data to be transferred into an individual document based on your template. Now let’s continue in order to convert these new documents into a PDF.

Step 5: Convert your new documents to PDF automatically

To convert your newly created documents into a PDF, head to the ‘Generate’ section and select PDF. Select or create a destination folder where you want to save these PDFs.

Once finished, click Next.

Google Sheets to PDF 5

This connection now means that every new document created in the previous connection will be converted as a PDF automatically by Sheetgo. You will have the original document and the PDF in your files.

Step 6 (optional): Share your PDFs automatically via Gmail

You can opt to send these PDFs to their recipients automatically. Sheetgo is able to discover the email addresses within your source data and send each new document to its intended recipient via Gmail.

To do this, head to the ‘Share’ section and click Email. Select the Get dynamically from a column option and select the column containing the email addresses. You can choose to send your new documents as an access link or as an attachment. Finally, you can edit the email subject – here I will use my dynamic tags to personalize the subject line.

Google Sheets to PDF 6

Once completed, click Finish and save.

Convert Google spreadsheet to PDF

And there you have it! Now that your workflow is completed. Sheetgo will automatically transfer your source data into your document template and generate your new documents. In just a matter of minutes, these documents will be converted as PDF and sent to their recipients via Gmail!

Looking to generate other PDFs from spreadsheets in your business processes? Check out our article on How to create an invoice generator.

Alternatively, take a look at our related blog posts below!

You may also like…