Episode 2: Compressing MS Word files (PART A)

What we will learn today: How to reduce file size of MS WORD documents.
Why this: Nearly all people who create documents on computer use MS WORD. Now previously we learned how to compress PDF files, but sometimes it does not work (the file size is not significantly reduced). So, if we reduce the size of the original Word document, we will get very good results.


What is needed: MS WORD. Nothing else. And I hope you have MS OFFICE 2007 or later, as they have really cool features that you don’t want to miss. Visit Microsoft Store to purchase the office suite.

What you need to know: MS WORD 2007 and later introduced a new file format “.docx”, the files with “.docx” usually are already very small in size due to new MS OFFICE compression algorithms. So the main reason for increased size now is due to inclusion of hi-res(high resolution) images, or if the file format is other than “.docx” (eg. “Rich Text Format .rtf”). Older versions use “.doc”, which is also not so efficient with file sizes.

How to do it:

PART A: If you have the file in a format other than “.docx”:

Now the first step will be converting it into “.docx”, since it’s the most optimized format w.r.t file sizes.

  • Open MS WORD. I am using MS WORD 2010, and I also recommend you use it. Open the document you want to change the format of
  • Now go to “File” Tab, and click “Save As”, you can see I have a “Rich Text Format” file, with file size of 32.4 MB


  • On clicking “Save As”, you will see this window

  • Click on “Save as type”, and select “Word Document”


  • When you will select “Word Document”(which means “.docx”), a new check mark will appear in the “Save As” box

  • Make sure to check this box (there should be a small tick in the box), because in some parts of the world; people still use older versions. And it also saves your layout and formatting styles in much better way
  • I hope you have decided the destination where file will be saved (or choose now), then click “Save”. I got a “.docx” file with size of only 962 kb! Amazing
NOTE: Now you may convert this file to PDF and apply the PDF compression tricks, imagine how small size the file will become.

What’s next? Yes, this was that simple, many of you would be thinking what am I doing, teaching you how to save a file.! Peace, sometimes we are so much consumed in a problem, we are neglecting simple solutions. No worries, we will explore more advanced options in Part B of this episode. Surely you will like them. Stay bookmarked.

Please do leave comments, questions or any of your suggestions.
Visit MIcrosoft website, store.microsoft.com to purchase Microsoft products.

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