Best File Formats for Business Documents

As e-commerce sales increase, it becomes increasingly common for businesses to rely almost completely on digital files. Teams collaborating on projects may not even work inside the same building. If you regularly need to send documents to colleague via a network or over the internet, what file format should you use? Here are seven of the best file formats for sending documents:

7 Awesome File Formats for Sharing Business Documents

One way to choose the best file format is to look at the type of document you’re sending. Think about features such as security, compatibility, file size and overall quality. Some options allow you to include it all — text, images, videos, spreadsheets and more:

  1. PDF

PDF files are the universal format for sharing documents. Even the name “portable document format” shows that PDFs were designed from the very beginning as a way to send and share files. There are a few important advantages to using this format: flexibility, quality and appearance.


Sometimes you have to choose what format you will be sending a specific document and you wonder what is the best file formats for sending business documents? It can be anything like PDF, Docx file, tiff files, other Microsoft Office formats like Word Document, other image files, vector or vector image, photoshop format, plain text, etc. Sometimes you need to decide whether you are will to compromise quality vs. file size or vice-versa. For example, if you are sending an image via TIFF it will be very high in quality but also a very big file if you need to share let’s say via email. So you might want to compress to smaller file sizes or change the file types to others that are smaller. You have to keep in mind that if you compress a file you will possibly lose quality.


There are a few file-sharing formats that compress the file size but keep the same document file quality. One of these formats is a PDF file. Usually, the quality vs. file size issue applies to an image file or graphics. On occasions, you might need to send files in vector format let’s say for impressions of flyers, t-shirts, caps, etc. In these cases, you need to send your email attachments in a format that maintains the full vector quality. These can be very large files and your email provider might not support these sizes in attachments. In this case, that’s why it’s convenient to reduce the size of a file but maintain it with the same quality. 


PDFs are compatible with virtually any device. You can open them on an Apple MacBook laptop, an Android smartphone or a Windows PC. People in Europe, Asia, North America, South America, Africa and other places can all use the same apps to access these files. If your team is spread around the world, few options can equal PDF.


Another advantage of PDFs is the way they conserve the original layout of your documents. This is essential for teams working on digital marketing, graphic design and other projects where a specific appearance is important. This what-you-see-is-what-you-get format helps every member of the team to stay on the same page, literally.


Of course, to maximize your use of PDFs, you need to invest in a high-quality PDF editor such as PDFSimpli. That way you can add digital signatures, modify text, move images and handle other changes. PDFs are awesome for sending, but sometimes you want to convert PDF to Word or PDF to Excel on your end to speed up data entry. The best PDF editors let you do exactly that.

  1. DOCX

This is the format for Microsoft Word documents. Microsoft Office is popular in many corporate environments, so there’s a good chance your colleagues can open any Word docs you submit. When the only thing you need to send is text, and you don’t care about specific fonts, page breaks or layout, then DOCX can be an excellent choice. DOCX files with text are small and easy to edit.

  1. DOC and DOCM

Only choose .DOC (an older Microsoft Word format) if your recipient specifically requests it. DOCX is a more secure choice with added flexibility. If you need to include macros, opt for DOCM instead.

  1. XLSX

Microsoft Excel is one of the most used file formats for spreadsheets in the world. It’s useful for sharing raw data. Many companies use XLSX files for financial information, customer records and production data.

  1. PPTX

Sharing PowerPoint presentations among sales personnel is common. The downside of PPTX is that files are usually too large to email quickly. PDFs are more flexible, and they let you include videos, slideshows, images, hyperlinks and other elements in the same document.

  1. EPS

Encapsulated PostScript format can deliver excellent results when you need to print high-resolution images via a professional printer. Banners and large signs often use this format. Of course, to edit these files, you need Adobe Illustrator or another specialized program.

  1. JPEG

JPEG files compress pictures for faster mailing. They can be helpful for rough drafts or sending colleagues pictures of something you want them to buy. You can also use a combination of JPEG to PDF to e-Sign documents and mail them.

  1. PNG

Are you submitting a single image? This lossless image format is a favorite of professional photographers. It captures excellent detail that can be reproduced at the original size anywhere. The downside is that files are a bit larger, but when you need maximum resolution, it’s worth it.

Why PDF Is So Popular for Sharing Documents

With a global economy and a changing work environment, it makes sense to learn about the right digital files for sharing with colleagues. PDF is one of the most popular choices, and that’s not surprising. With high-tech security, excellent file compression and dependable visual fidelity, PDFs are often the perfect tool for business. It doesn’t matter whether you work on your smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC, you can always open PDFs. All you need is a high-quality PDF editor and you’re ready for anything.

Richard Parker