Evernote is a cross-platform application used by over 50 million people for many purposes, starting from taking notes, writing down important thoughts, recipes, taking pictures and even more. Practically, it can be your digital file cabinet, a useful tool that helps you each day, or better, a universal inbox where you can put everything that goes through your mind in the same place.
To sum up, Evernote has three main features: an image upload tool, a voice recording device and a text editor which you can use separately or combined. All of these can be used efficiently, if you know the right ways.
15+ Tips and Tricks to increase Evernote’s efficiency
Evernote is used in various ways because it has so many different features, which sometimes make it so complex. Sadly, some people have not succeeded to fully understand this tool and use it to its maximum potential so we’ve gathered below some of the most important Evernote tips and tricks which should improve the general experience.
Use the web clipper
One of the greatest features of Evernote is the Web Clipper. This is a plug-in for Chrome, Safari and Firefox browsers that lets you save the content of a web page, a paragraph or a phrase and add text to it. Moreover, it can copy and save the URL of the page and it can also integrate with Google.
What does this mean? It means that any related pages from your clipper will show up in the right of the results page when you search something on Google. In this way, you know what you have already saved and liked and you do not have to check those pages again.
Search with style
In the upper section of the application you have the search bar where you can define and add filters to your search. If you write in front of your search the word “tag:”, it will only show the notes with that specific tag and if you precede it with the minus sign (“-tag:“), it will exclude all the compatible findings.
Also, the asterisk character (“*”) is used as a wildcard and, for example, if you search for “tag:*” it will find all your tagged notes. Do you want to check the notes from the last 30 days? That’s not a problem for Evernote; just type “created: day-30” in the search bar and there you have it.
Use Evernote as your address book
Another interesting capability of Evernote is that it can also search through pictures and discover handwritten words, while highlighting them with yellow color. Although this feature might seem revolutionary, it will fail sometimes.
So, why not take pictures of business cards and search them later when you need them? Create a special folder for this category and save all these specific pictures within. A big plus of this technique is that this handy address book that can be accessed from almost every device that has internet connection, thanks to the cross-platform atribute.
This behaves as a plug-in for the Evernote application, allowing the user to add annotations, shapes and sketches to their notes. This permits users to express thoughts with fewer words or draw attention towards something important. Skitch is able to do all these things even in a PDF.
Apart from the features mentioned above, it is able to highlight important sections and add text along them. In addition, these capabilities work together smoothly and rapidly, making the entire experience much easier and perfect.
Email to Evernote
When you sign-up for a new account, Evernote assigns you an email address. If you do not know it, you just have to log into the desktop application and look under “Account info”. The interesting part appears if you send an email to this address, Evernote will directly transform it into a note. Therefore, the subject of the email will be the title of the note and the body of the email will be the body of the note.
It can offer even more, because Evernote can move the note to a specified folder and add tags automatically. In the subject of the email, you will have to put the “@” and “#” symbols after the name of the note. The “@” character is used to direct the note to the specified folder and the “”#” is for adding tags, but it is necessarily that these folders and the tags exist before sending this email.
Sync documents with Evernote
The Windows Evernote desktop application offers the possibility to transfer documents automatically to your Evernote account. It can be configured very simple and you can sync not only one, but more folders at the same time. Now, all your files are available from every computer through the web interface or from every phone through the special Android or iOS app.
A very interesting feature is that you can make the DropBox sync application and Evernote application to work together. To do this, just follow these steps:
- First of all, install the DropBox and Evernote desktop applications.
- Secondly, create a folder named “Evernote Sync” in the DropBox folder where you will put all of your documents.
- After that, open Evernote and click on the “Tools” menu and then “Import Folders”.
- Now, you will have to click the “Add” button and choose the destination of “Evernote Sync” folder.
- It is also possible to set the exact location where to import the files and to delete the local ones from the DropBox folder, if you want to. After configuring this, just copy the files you want to be imported in Evernote into the DropBox folder and they will be synced automatically.
Add apps and services
Evernote Trunk is a suite of products and services that can be integrated with the service itself. You can find various applications and hardware that add different features and functionality to the Evernote experience, making it better. Also, here you can find a lot guides and instructions of how to get started with Evernote, but overall, the special hardware draws our attention.
For example, Fujitsu ScanSnap is an ordinary scanner which can quickly convert paper documents into electronic files. It is able to scan handwritten notes, business cards, documents or images and thanks to the partnership between Fujitsu and Evernote, another feature was added too.
Now, the Fujitsu ScanSnap is able to upload the scanned files to the Evernote account with a simple push of a button. All the papers used are instantly available on every device connected to internet, but you have to know that this feature is only available for the Evernote Business users.
Integrate e-signatures with notes
RightSignature is an electronic signature application that can be integrated with notes from Evernote. Practically, it can turn your notes and documents into digital papers that can be electronically signed and saved right back into the Evernote account, so that you can access them easily from every device connected.
In RightSignature all the documents are saved as PDFs, are processed in real time and the application is also capable of tracking and checking the status of documents. Right when the document is sent back signed, RightSignature will automatically send a PDF copy to your Evernote account and save it. Using RightSignature and Evernote together will reduce cost and time which may be lost while printing, faxing or scanning.
All these operations can be eliminated with the right app and you can better organize all your receipts and documents.
Transcribe audio notes
Quicktate is an application that converts audio files into transcripts that you can easily search and access from your Evernote account. Unlike other transcription options you may have, which are using the voice recognition technology, Quicktate uses human typists to transcribe voice recordings. Because of the fact that real humans do the entire job, the accuracy is remarkably.
It’s good to know that they have hundreds of trained employees capable of transcribing both long and short notes and that the service is available 24/7. While for a 60 minutes voice note recorded in Evernote you will have to wait about 4-6 hours to be transcribed, for a 3 minute one you will have to wait between 5-10 minutes.
An interesting service is that if you are on the road and you do not have a steady internet connection, you can call a special number ((888) 222-NOTE), record your note and Quicktate will convert and save it automatically to your Evernote account.
In order to protect privacy, developers also added some extra security measure, having multiple layers of protection to guard your data. Those interested can check the pricing list on their official site.
Simplify with keyboard shortcuts
If you are always in a hurry or you just want to run Evernote more efficiently you have to learn a couple of keyboard shortcuts. These shortcuts will help you work more quickly and save time by making use of the keyboard and keeping that other hand on the mouse. The most common keyboard shortcuts for Windows and Mac computers are:
- Ctrl-N / CMD-N – Create a new note
- Ctrl-Shift-N / CMD-⇧-N – New notebook
- Ctrl-Shift-T / ⌃-CMD-N – New tag
- Ctrl-Shift-E – Send notes by email
- CMD-: – show spelling &grammar
- Alt-Shift-D / ⌃-CMD-D – Insert the date and time
- F9 / ⌃-CMD-S – Sync
If you cannot settle with the default shortcuts, Evernote lets people configure their own. All you have to do is go in the desktop application under Tools, select Options and then, Hot Keys.
Share Google+ updates directly to Evernote
Those with a lot of Google+ friends and who usually share interesting stuff on their profiles are able to set up Google to send and save shares to an Evernote account, automatically. How to do it? First of all, you need to know your email address assigned by Evernote and if you don’t know it, just log in to your account, select the “Menu” button and look under “Account info”.
Secondly, you will have to create a new circle in Google+. Name it “Send to Evernote” to remember what’s it for and click on the “add a new person” button to add your unique Evernote address. Afterwards, you will only have to share your friend’s content to the circle we created and it will be sent automatically to Evernote.
Note history is a feature available only for the premium users which takes snapshots of notes and copies all their contents to a secured server. It’s very handy, because normally if you upload a newer version of your note you will be able to access only the last one. With this feature users gain unlimited access to all past versions.
The Note history checks the Evernote account for several times a day and if there are any changes, it will upload them to the server. Note that this will not automatically capture documents at every change.
If you have a shared notebook this is the best way to keep track of changes made by others. You will be able to access your previous versions to see how the note has progressed and if you decide to permanently delete it, remember that versions will be wiped too.
Drag and drop files
This tip is for Mac users only and provides an easy way of adding notes to our delightful service. With the application placed carefully in the dock, all Mac OS X users have to do is drag and drop a casual text file and it will be transformed in a note, on the spot .
Two other ways are to simply drag and drop the document into a note and to use the menu option from the desktop application, by pressing “File” and then “Attach”. The first of these two also works for Windows users, which should be a welcoming news.
Merging Evernote Accounts
It is not really possible to merge different accounts, but it is possible to export notebooks from one to another. This can be done very simple. Just select the desired notebook and right click on it; then a menu will pop up and select “Export Notes from..”. The next stage is to choose the location where you want to save them and the type of the exportation. Moreover, it is very important to choose the ENEX file type for the exported notebooks to be sure that you will not have further problems.
Now all you need is to import these files to another account. Again, it is a very simple process; just log in and click “File” and select “Import notes”. Browse to the location where you have saved the ENEX files and select the desired ones. Evernote will automatically create a new notebook named “Imported Notes” with these files, which you can organize and move to the preferred location.
Creating Template Notes for Evernote
Evernote doesn’t have yet the feature of creating and preserving templates so you will have to do it by yourself or to use a third party application. Kustomnote is an award winning title that allows users to create personal templates or to select one from dozens already made. It has a nice feature named SmartField, which assists people by auto populating the content of the note when you start searching for a movie or music.
It is so easy to share a note to Evernote using Kustomnote because the whole experience is very user-friendly. Choose your template, write your thoughts and just press one button and the note will be directly sent and stored in your account.
To begin automating Evernote you will have to make a simple account on IFTTT (if this then that) which is a service responsible for creating connections between different social accounts. The basic rule is known as a “recipe”, which is formed from a trigger (“if this”) and an action (“then that”).
For example, if you want to keep a diary with certain photos from Instagram you can configure IFTTT to automatically send them to Evernote. First of all, you will have to make a new tag on your Evernote account, such as “Instagram”. Secondly, you need to set up the trigger in order to send the pictures only when they have added that certain tag.
With IFTTT you can create all kind of “recipes” not only for Evernote, but for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and others too.