Welcome back to our Virtual Gadgets Every Blogger Needs miniseries! Today is all about Evernote–the fantastic app I use to create shopping lists and organize my online life!
I discovered Evernote about two years ago. At the time I was still using Blogger and was about to throw my laptop out the window due to losing another draft!
Fortunately for Mr. Laptop, I decided against reducing him to a pile of electronic scraps. Afterall, it really wasn’t his fault the post was lost–it was Bloggers. I tend to work on posts throughout the day which means my draft is open all day. I guess Blogger’s system didn’t enjoy this because, after about 8 hours, the site would shut down and everything I wrote would be zapped into oblivion.
I needed to find a way to write posts outside of Blogger that would work on both a laptop and tablet. I needed an online notebook. This search is what led me to Evernote.
What is Evernote?
Evernote is a cloud-based text storage system. Basically, it’s a virtual notebook that you can use wherever you are.
Getting started with Evernote:
The first thing you should know is that Evernote is free. Ah, my favorite letters of the alphabet: F-R-E-E. There is no trial period or credit card required. Just download and go.
You can upgrade to a paid plan (Plus or Premium) to unlock more options, but we’re going to focus on the free version in this post because that is what I use.
Now let’s get back on track and start exploring Evernote!
First, you’ll need to create an account. Just enter your email address and a password, then click the green Create Account button.
Congratulations! You now have an account with Evernote!
After registering your account, you’ll be taken to the web version of Evernote. The first thing you should see is Evernote’s Getting Started guide.
This walk-through will show you how to:
- Create a new note in Evernote.
- Set up time-sensitive notes called “reminders”.
- Download and use the Web Clipper to save internet articles.
- Download Evernote’s app to your computer, tablet, or phone so you can access your notes anywhere.
It’s not mandatory for you to complete these steps to start using Evernote; however, doing so will help you figure out how the app works.
Adding Text Notes:
There are countless ways to add content to Evernote. You can type your notes (my preferred method), record voice memos, even draw your notes using the handwriting tool!
To create a new text note in Evernote, just click the green plus icon.
Create a Voice memo:
Click the microphone icon, then the Record button, to record a voice memo in Evernote.
When you’re finished recording, click the Save button to save your voice note.
Honestly, I never imagined I’d end up recording voice memos, but this nifty feature has grown on me. The best post ideas often come while I’m doing mundane tasks, like housecleaning or raking the horses’ stalls. However, by the time I finish the chores, those ideas are long gone.
Instead of racking my brain later trying to remember that brilliant story I conjured up, I just open Evernote on my phone, hit the record button, and start talking.
Adding images to Evernote:
You can also insert pictures into Evernote (I find this particularly useful when creating shopping lists). Just click the paperclip icon to attach an image from your computer to your Evernote note.
Here’s an example of my Hobby Lobby list:
If I’m looking for something I’m not familiar with (such as that Frost Medium), having an image helps me to find the right product faster.
Organizing your notes:
If you’re like me and write lots of notes on a daily basis, you’ll probably want to organize your notes so you can find them easily. Thankfully, Evernote is all about organization. You can save individual notes inside Notebooks and even add tags to your notes.
Just click the grey Create A Notebook icon to create a new Notebook:
Don’t forget to give your Notebook a name!
Then start adding notes by clicking the plus sign, or move notes from an existing Notebook. Just navigate to the note you want to move, click the down arrow next to the Notebook’s name, and select the name of the Notebook you want to move your note too.
You may also want to add tags to your notes, especially if you have several covering similar topics (like Blogging).
Just click Add Tag link, type a description, and hit enter to save.
You can find notes with a specific tag by clicking the drop-down menu under the Tag icon or using the search box.
Using Evernote’s Web Clipper:
Along with being a digital file cabinet for storing your own documents, Evernote’s Web Clipper is a great bookmarking tool. The Web Clipper is a browser extension that allows you to save articles, images, text, from web pages.
First, you’ll need to download the Web Clipper from Evernote. The Web Clipper is available for Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Safari. All you need to do is click the download button.
Now, the next time you’re reading something awesome and want to bookmark it for later, just click the elephant logo in your toolbar.
Then click the drop-down menu under the Organize tab, select the Notebook you want to save the page in, add a tag or two, then click the Save button.
The page you saved is now stored away with your other Evernote notes!
While you can bookmark any webpage using Evernote’s Web Clipper, I typically don’t bookmark pages from blogs I follow (that’s what Reader is for, right?). Instead, I use the Web Clipper to find specific articles quickly.
For example, I was researching the Infinity Stones (I have a theory about the Stones and the upcoming Captain Marvel film) when I stumbled across this article explaining each of the stones and telling when they first appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I didn’t want to forget this info, so I used the Web Clipper to save the article.
Now, I can refer back to this page as I work to deduce what might happen in Avengers 4!
Another great thing about the Web Clipper is that the article you saved will stay safe with your other notes even if the website suddenly disappears.
Keep Adding Notes!
Seriously, we barely scratched the surface of this incredible app! I haven’t even touched on the various Evernote templates you can download. Yes, Evernote has templates for calendars, goal tracking, project planning, marketing, social media, even creative writing (all for free by the way😉)!
So, why not head over and check it out: Take me to Evernote!
A little perk for signing up through one of my referral links is that you’ll get a month of Evernote Premium for free. That means you’ll get to test drive some of Evernote’s business features like accessing your notes offline, scanning business cards, searching inside PDF files, and more.
So, I sure hope this quick tutorial of Evernote was helpful. Now, I’d like to hear from you!
Do you use Evernote?
If so, feel free to comment with your favorite digital note taking tips!
Also, I’m having a little trouble deciding which virtual gadget to cover next and could use your help. Would you rather read a tutorial of Canva, see how I get images internet ready with Photoshop Elements, or take a tour of Tailwind? Leave your answer in the comment section, and I’ll start work on Part 3 of Virtual Gadgets Every Blogger Needs!
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