[Efficient Tips] How to Merge PDFs Online with Smallpdf Merger & Alternatives


Do you have to regularly switch from one file to another when working with multiple PDFs? Combining them helps to manage them effectively. A free online tool that will help make the joining process seamless is the Smallpdf Merger tool. One reason to use this tool is that you're assured top-notch security for your documents, as all the files uploaded and generated on the server are permanently deleted after one hour.

While Smallpdf should be your first choice when looking for a free online merger, many alternatives are equally as effective. Read on to learn how to use Smallpdf to merge PDF files and some of the best alternatives you should consider using.

how to use smallpdf merger


Part 1: How to Combine PDFs Online Using Smallpdf PDF Merger

Smallpdf Merger is a browser-based PDF combiner that boasts of quick processing of PDF files across all operating systems. The joining of the files happens online, so you don't have to worry about the tool slowing down your computer. Unlike some online tools, no sign-up is necessary before use, meaning you can quickly merge documents with just a few simple clicks.

Features of Smallpdf Merge Tool

  • Compress, merge, split, edit, rotate, sign, and unlock PDF documents quickly.
  • Join images and PDFs into one document.
  • Join different PDF files into one PDF file and save them in Dropbox or Drive.
  • Execute quick edits on PDF files online.
  • Enjoy a simple to use and manipulate.
  • Merge multiple PDF files into a single PDF file online.

Ready to begin your merging process? Here are the steps when using Smallpdf to combine PDF files online.

Step 1: Navigate to the Smallpdf website, and on the home page, click on Merge PDF from the menu icons on the taskbar to redirect to the PDF Merger page.

merge pdf files with smallpdf

Step 2: Click the Choose Files option and select the PDF files you want to merge. You also have the option to drag and drop the PDFs you wish to merge on the user interface.

choose files

Step 3: Select between File Mode and Page Mode once the files have been uploaded.

  • The File Mode is the merging option available for free users and doesn't allow the re-arranging of files. Documents with be joined in the order that you upload them.
  • The Pro Mode allows unlimited merging of documents, and users can select, arrange, and combine individual PDF pages. Users have to pay to use the Pro features, but they can still try it out for free for 7 days.

combine pdf files with smallpdf

Step 4: Once uploaded and re-arranged, click on Merge to combine your documents. The joining process will happen on the Smallpdf cloud server, and when complete, you'll have the option to download your file or export it in different formats.


  • It has a free plan to use.
  • Smallpdf boasts a simple and easy-to-use UI.
  • High-quality file processing.
  • It allows batch file merging.
  • Your file data and privacy is protected.


  • Since it's a web-based tool, you may need an active internet connection to merge PDF files online.


  • Pro - starting at $9 monthly (billed annually at $108). Monthly billing for the same plan starts at $10.
  • Team - starting at $7 monthly (billed annually at $84). Monthly billing for the same starts at $12.

Part 2: What Are the Best Offline Alternative Mergers to Smallpdf?

Consider offline PDF mergers if you don't wish to merge your files online. They are free to use and provide users with an efficient way to merge documents quickly. Unlike online tools, offline options can quickly process multiple files without compromising quality. Most tools have an easy-to-use interface that makes the merging process quicker.

Check out some of the best tools you should consider using.

Alternative 1: Coolmuster PDF Merger - Recommended

If you wish to merge your documents offline and want a Smallpdf merge alternative, consider using Coolmuster PDF Merger. This tool guarantees 100% joining safety because no personal information is lost during the combination process. Coolmuster is also available for 8, 7, 10, and 11 Windows users and provides effortless editing without compromising the quality of the processed documents.

Users also enjoy processing multiple files because it allows for batch upload of documents. Once uploaded, you can re-arrange the files as you wish and rename the output file as desired.

Features of Coolmuster PDF Merger

  • Combine multiple PDF files into one document effortlessly.
  • Join large files without compromising on quality.
  • Enjoy a seamless PDF combining experience and a user-friendly interface.
  • Maintain original text, layouts, and hyperlinks in the final product file.
  • Rename the output file as you desire
  • Sort your documents before merging can start.


  • An easy-to-use interface makes it user-friendly use even for beginners.
  • Operate independently without requiring Adobe Acrobat or any other application.
  • Enjoy secure and safe document processing, as no personal information is compromised.
  • Maintain original document formatting such as text, layout, hyperlinks, etc.
  • Operate offline.


  • Limited to merge up to 3 documents.
  • Only available as an offline tool.


Coolmuster PDF Merger has a free version and an option to buy a license.

  • 1PC, the cost is $9.95 for a 1-month subscription.
  • 1PC for a 1-year license, the cost is $15.95.
  • The business plan starts at $25.95 (1-year license for 5PCs.

If you would like to use the Coolmuster PDF Merger to combine your document, here are the steps to follow.

01Download, install, then run the program. Click on Add File to import the PDFs you want to merge. Alternatively, drag and drop the selected PDF files into the software's interface.

02Click the browse button to select your preferred output folder from your computer's storage. You can also re-arrange the imported PDF documents to your liking. Click Start to begin the merging process.

merge pdf files with pdf merger

03A pop-up window will appear when the merging process is complete. Click Show in Folder to view your merged document.

merging pdf files

More useful tips:

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Alternative 2. PDFSAM Basic

PDFSAM Basic is among the most popular PDF merger and splitter tools in the market that provides the option to merge and split PDF documents. Sorting pages is also easy while using this tool.

merge pdf files with smallpdf alternative


  • Process your documents locally.
  • Benefit from quick merging for free in four easy steps.


  • Enjoy different customization to your document, like adding a table of contents, etc.
  • Work seamlessly across different operating systems.
  • Re-arrange documents to your liking by dragging and dropping your files.


  • Java is required to run the application.


  • Free to use.

Alternative 3. SodaPDF Desktop

SodaPDF Desktop is the right pick for individuals who prefer to use something other than the online tool. Users have plenty of customization, including changing the page orientation and size. The application also integrates seamlessly with Dropbox and Google Drive.

 combine pdfs with smallpdf alternative


  • Enjoy quick merging of documents.
  • Benefit from the quick upload of documents from Google Drive.


  • Merge files quickly with a responsive and easy-to-use interface.
  • Join files by importing or uploading them to the cloud server.
  • Keep the original format and orientation of the document.


  • Has limitations on daily usage


  • Free to use.

To enjoy unrestricted use, you can subscribe to the $2 14-day full access or the $60 annual plan.

Part 3: What Are the Best Online Alternative Mergers to Smallpdf?

Online mergers provide an effective way to merge PDFs online seamlessly. You'll only need to upload, re-arrange, and join them. For most tools, there's a limitation on the size and number of you can process simultaneously. Regardless, the combination process is safe because these tools will automatically delete uploaded and processed documents immediately or within a few hours.

Check out a few online tools worth trying out.

Alternative 1. iLovePDF

iLovePDF is a desktop management app designed to assist businesses in compressing, splitting, merging, and editing portable document format (PDF) files on one platform. It allows users to convert scanned PDF files into adaptive Microsoft Word documents by optical character recognition (OCR) technology. The price starts from 7$ per month (flat rate).

combine pdf files with smallpdf alternative online


  • Compress, convert, and combine while maintaining file quality.
  • Merge files securely.
  • Merge multiple PDF files while preserving file quality and integrity.


  • Enjoy quick online merging on a user-friendly interface.
  • Integrate with other business processes.
  • Enjoy using the tool for free.


  • An Internet connection is required to merge files.
  • Too many ads.
  • Too many options to choose from.


Apart from the free plan, iLovePDF has two subscription plans:

  • The premium plan costs $7 and $4 monthly if charged annually ($48).
  • The business pricing plan is charged according to the needs of your organization.

In case you're in need:

How to Open a PDF in Word & Through Offline/Online Tools

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Alternative 2. WPS Office PDF Merger

WPS PDF Merger office suite that allows educational institutions, professionals, and corporations to manage their customary operations conveniently. The WPS office suite is a cross-platform application with efficient, lightweight apps that work across different devices. Users enjoy various benefits, such as creating and editing PDF files.

merge pdf files with wps online


  • Create, and edit PDF files on Android, Linux, Windows, and iOS mobile devices.
  • Join multiple documents for free online.


  • Enjoy numerous features ranging from merging to editing PDFs.
  • Sort documents on preview before merging them.
  • A lighter version of the Office suite.


  • Limited image preview options.


  • Besides the free WPS Office suite version, WPS has a Pro subscription plan. The premium fee is $3.99 for 1-month, $18 for a half year, and $29.99 for one year.

Alternative 3. DocFly

DocFly provides a convenient and secure way to merge files online, as all files are securely uploaded via HTTPS. You also have the option to upload your document from your computer, Google Drive or Dropbox.

merge pdf files with docfly


  • Join multiple documents conveniently with an easy-to-use interface.
  • Upload files from your PC, Dropbox, and Google Drive.


  • Upload documents to edit securely via HTTPS.
  • Retain the original format of the files merged.
  • Process documents on the cloud without worrying about lengthy updates or software downloads.
  • Complete merging in three easy steps.


  • You need to subscribe to the pro plan to enjoy premium features.


  • Free to use; however, to enjoy premium features, you'll need to subscribe for $7.99 monthly or $47.88 per year.


If you love joining, converting, and editing PDFs in a single document, the above options are great. However, online tools like Smallpdf PDF Merger and offline alternatives such as Coolmuster PDF Merger should be your top picks for unmatched PDF joining capabilities. Try them out today and enjoy a great merging experience!

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