How to Add Buttons to a PDF in Adobe Acrobat XI

Adding buttons to your PDF presentation is a great way to add interactivity to the document. When clicked, buttons can execute script and perform commands and actions for the user. In our Adobe Acrobat XI training course, expert author Michael Hoffman shows you how easy it is to add and customize buttons into a PDF document.

To get started, simply click the add button tool that is found in the tools panel in the interactive objects category.


Once you’ve clicked that, you can click and drag a rectangle button anywhere in your document, and size it appropriately. It will then prompt you for a field name, which is something that programmers may need to use to control buttons and actions in JavaScript. Having this field name will allow you to gain access to the button from within your JavaScript.

Next, click on All Properties to open the properties dialog box. In here, you are able to customize the button by adding text, selecting the font size and color, and more.


You will also need to assign an action to the button to actually make it DO something. Buttons have a trigger, which is what causes the action to happen. This trigger can be a number of different curser events, including mouse up, mouse down, and mouse enter – mouse up is most common. Next, assign the type of action you want your button to do. For example, you could ask your button to open a file, execute a menu button, move to the next page, and many more.

Another way you can customize your button and make it more visually appealing is by adding an icon. You can do this by opening up the properties dialog box and choosing an icon from your saved documents.


If you would like the button to appear on multiple pages, there is an easier way to do so other than the standard copy and paste option. Using the select object tool, highlight and right click the button (or control click on a Mac), then select the duplicate across pages option and specify which pages you’d like the button to appear.

Watch Michael demonstrate the entire lesson from our Adobe Acrobat XI training course, then test your skills by creating your own buttons in a PDF document.



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