Reducing PDF files made in Sketch

Today, I wanted to send out an invitation which I had built in Sketch. I exported it to PDF and found that it was well over 50Mb. Probably, because of the pictures and fading effects. This is way to large to send over email, so I wanted to shrink the document. I couldn’t find a way to achieve this directly in Sketch, so this is my work-around. Hoping it will be of help to others.

Note: this explanation is for Mac users only.

1. Export your file to PDF from Sketch

Finalise your design in Sketch and export it to PDF format in the right bottom corner of Sketch.

Export your design to PDF.

2. Open the PDF in Preview

Once you exported the file to PDF, and you like it, open it in Preview on your Mac. For Windows users, I don’t have a solution yet, please comment below if you have a solution, or an alternative.

3. Export it

In Preview, click on File and then on Export. In the bottom of the Export pop up you will see a number of options:

Select the Reduce File Size option. Then click Save and check the file. The result should be the same, or at least very similar, as the original file, as your PDF is vector based.

4. Enjoy the result ;-)

In my case it reduced the file size from 59MB to 89Kb, which means it reduced the files size 663 (!) times. Your email recipients will thank you!

If you liked this post please hit that 💚 below. It would mean the world to me, and hopefully help others. Thanks!

Auke Schotanus is the founder of Pontonniers, a design strategy and digital innovation consultancy from Amsterdam. We use the principles of design to create strategies and experiences that transform organisations and teams.

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