Quickly Create PDF from Google Documents with Make.com

Ever found yourself bogged down by the tedious task of creating PDFs for your business? Are you looking to quickly create PDFs from Google Documents in your Google Drive folders? 🤔

Well, say farewell to the monotony and manual labor with this no-code automation tutorial. This blog will show you how to use a no-code solution to create, customize, generate, and send PDF documents. 

This will save you time, allowing you to redirect your focus towards scaling your business. Get ready to witness your PDFs come to life on autopilot! 😉

Setting the Stage for Automation

What we will do here is to transform this Google document into a PDF file.  

This can be downloaded as PDF, but we want to do this on autopilot. It's important to highlight the need for a solution that goes beyond manual labor. Let me introduce Make.com. This is a no-code tool that will help us automate the conversion process, making it seamless and efficient. Use this affiliate link to explore Make.com and get 10,000 free operations for a month.

Basic PDF Creation: Simplifying the Process

Let’s dive into the actual specifics of this set-up. 

First, download the document using the Google Docs Download a Document module using the type PDF. 

Then upload it to a different location as a file. 

Taking it to the Next Level: Dynamic Document Creation

Now, we want to take it to the next level to make it dynamic. Here we have a simplified customer database which becomes the key to customization. 

From this database, we can generate a document for each row of the data and convert it to PDF. This can be any document: an invoice, a report or anything you can imagine. 

For demonstration, we will use this template:

The top header includes the name, title, company, address, country, salutation, and last name. 

Notice that the variables we want to replace with the actual values in our database are placed inside curly braces. 

This is how we can create dynamic content based on the data. You can also change the font style, make it bold or italic and format them the way you want.

Creating Dynamic Documents: Make.com in Action

Witness Make.com in action as it fetches dynamic data from the Google Sheet and creates a document from the template. 

I'll show you how to fill variables with values from the database using Make.com, so you can understand its powerful features.

To start, we gather data from the Google Sheets using a filter to get data from one row. The filter can also be removed to work through all rows; it's flexible.

Next, we create a document from a template. 

Make.com allows us to easily connect variables from our Google Doc, such as customer names, titles and other values in the curly braces, to our dataset. 

You can then click into the field and select it from the Google Sheet database to make it dynamic.

You can also give it a title, give it a date or make it a unique title. 

We have a free cheat sheet for you to download that explains everything about Make functions, such as dynamically inserting dates.

Then, we choose the location where to save the document. In this case, it will be saved in the sample output folder in our Google Drive.

We use the Google Drive module to download the file with the document ID, which is compatible with various file formats. 

By turning on the slider for advanced settings, you can choose the format for file conversion. We choose to use PDF format for Google Documents.

The last step would be to upload it again to a specific folder to Google Drive using the Upload a File module.

Final Result: Dynamic PDF Generation Unveiled

Let's review the process again:

  1. Extract data from our Google Sheet. 
  2. Create a template and generate the document using Make.com. 
  3. Download the file to the Make service.
  4. Upload it to a folder on Google Drive. 

The result? A PDF with personalized details ready to go. 

With this straightforward process, you can effortlessly generate personalized PDFs tailored to your needs. It's that easy!

Sending Dynamically Generated PDFs via Email

Beyond just creating PDFs, you can also send them directly to your customers via email attachments. This is very handy especially when dealing with invoices or contracts. 

The process mirrors our previous steps: extracting data from Google Sheets, filtering it accordingly, and generating the document from a template. 

To distinguish this email attachment, I've appended "with email" to the title. 

After downloading the PDF with advanced settings, we utilize the Send an Email module. 

Whether you use Gmail, Outlook, or any other email provider, the process remains the same. Simply input the recipient's email address, subject line, and content, and attach the downloaded file.

Upon checking your inbox, you'll find an email containing an attachment. 

In this case, the attachment is a PDF named "Manuel Gick with email," showcasing a dynamically generated document.

It's that simple!

Our Automation Journey Continues

As we wrap up this comprehensive guide, the possibilities for automation are endless. 

For additional resources to enhance your automation journey, be sure to check out the Make Functions Cheat Sheet.

Thank you for joining me on this transformative automation adventure. Stay tuned for more insightful content!

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