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7 Ways To Make Use Of Evernote

David Pierce 19-02-2009

evernoteEvernote is becoming a favorite of many people for holding all their stuff. We put things into it. That’s a little vague, if you ask me.


What Evernote actually does is offer you essentially a blank slate of information capture and management tools, that allows you to use their product for a huge number of interesting and different things.

Some people use it as their GTD system, some as a way of storing business cards, and any number of things you could think of.

Me? I’ve found seven great ways that Evernote can help my life, and make it simpler and more efficient. Here they are, in no particular order:

Bookmark Manager


One of the best features about Evernote is the Web clipper. Using the desktop version, or a Firefox extension, you can add selections of pages, or even entire Web pages, into Evernote with only a couple of clicks. This, for all intents and purposes, has completely replaced my need for a bookmarking service. Any page I want just gets clipped into my Evernote inbox, and then I can deal with it there.


Evernote actually has most of the features of a good bookmarking service: you can tag bookmarks, search them, and even send them to someone else. Also, you can edit the text of them, so your bookmark contains only the bit you want, along with the URL. Simple, easy, and one less application for me to install.

File Backup


This is the only use of Evernote that differs whether or not you pay for an Evernote Premium Account ($5/month or $40/year, and well worth it). If you’re using the free version, you can use Evernote as a place to store all your pictures, audio, and PDFs. In itself, that’s pretty great, and a nice way to back things up (especially if you’re a fan of backing up your Word Documents to the universally-recognized PDFs, which I am). If you upgrade to Premium, you’ll be able to sync literally any kind of file you can think of (up to 25MB per file, so no movies) to all your computers and desktops.

This is yet another application – online backup – that Evernote does really well. All your files are in sync at all times, and can be accessed from anywhere. Make a change to a file in Evernote, and the changes are automatically saved in the Evernote note. You can email files, view or edit them from anywhere, and always be sure that your precious files are safe.


Photo Library


This is one of the things Evernote did from the beginning that sold me. You can take a picture (cell phone, camera, whatever), and send or upload it to Evernote. Evernote then does a bunch of cool things with your photos: it displays them in an attractive and easy-to-see way, and even recognizes text in your images through its high-powered recognition technology. You can organize and tag your pictures, share them with friends, and have them accessible from anywhere.

This is perfect for family outings and office parties, when everyone wants a copy of that great picture you took. Just add it into Evernote, share the note with everyone, and let them go nuts!

Student Organizer



As a student myself, Evernote’s usefulness exploded when I figured out how to use it for my school work. Now, all my notes and handouts go into Evernote, where I can organize them, tag them, edit them, and view them any time I want. Now, wherever I am, I can be reading or studying my notes, or getting ahead on class reading.

Also, if I need a great quote or need to remember a name of some Aztec ruler, I can search easily through my notes to find exactly what I’m looking for, instead of flipping through a massive pile of papers to try and get what I’m looking for. I can even take pictures of whiteboards or drawings, and Evernote makes them searchable for me.

“Mind Like Water”


Evernote’s most basic use is this one: easily and quickly getting everything out of your head. Evernote has versions for the Web, Windows, Mac, iPhone, Windows Mobile, and even a portable version to go on a thumb drive. You can add voice notes, image notes, or text notes through any of these clients, and organize them as you wish. It’s about as ubiquitous as a capture tool can be, and makes getting things out of your head a lot easier.


If you want to, Evernote can become a full-blown productivity system (a quick Google search will give you ways other people do it). Personally, I use it in conjunction with Remember the Milk, and it’s a great way to get everything in my head out of it, and into my trusted productivity system.

Shopping Helper


Do you buy things? Evernote can help. Next time you’re out, and see something you want, snap a picture of it. Or, when you run out of orange juice, either add it to your Evernote grocery list, or take a picture. You’ll have a constantly-updated, easy to access list of things you want and need.

Evernote is perfect for keeping Birthday and Christmas lists, ideas for things to get, price lists, grocery lists, and any manner of other things. When you’re out, all you need is Evernote, and you’ll never forget anything you need. Ever.

Paperless Life


I’ve recently started taking pictures or scanning all of my receipts. It’s a great way to keep track of where my money goes. I’m also starting to put magazine clippings into Evernote, as well as personal notes, bills, and the like. They all become searchable and organized, and are much more useful in Evernote than just sitting around in piles in my room. My life is becoming increasingly paperless, and all the stuff I accumulate is increasingly easy to manage, thanks to Evernote.

How do you use Evernote? Share it with us!

Photo Credit: MattGrommes

Related topics: Data Backup, Digital Document, Education Technology, Evernote, Note-Taking Apps, Scanner, Screen Capture.

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  1. Todd Doubleu
    October 28, 2009 at 7:40 am

    Terrific list! ... I use it to help me manage my e-mail inbox. For the items that are more reference in nature, I forward them to Evernote (via my Evernote e-mail address) and then add some helpful tags for future search. I view Evernote like the traditional filing cabinet and, like you, my hope is to gradually shift to digital. With all the capture tools available, this is becoming increasingly easier. Right now, I am debating between scanning old documents myself or using a service like

  2. Bejameco
    September 28, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    I use Evernote to store and organize my Genealogy research.

  3. trashman
    March 5, 2009 at 11:39 am

    #8 via Quicksilver (on Mac):

  4. rob
    February 26, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    Hey, thanks for the suggestion. I am getting used to evernote, and I like it (especially given the options out there) But heck, when it's free beggars can't be choosers to a degree. ;)

  5. bart
    February 26, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    rob - check out they may have something like that and they work with evernote (so they say. I have never used it, but found it mentioned on another forum).

    I use evernot for all on-line reciepts and it's web-clipper feature. probably one of the most useful (practical etc) tools ever.

  6. rob
    February 24, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    This is great and all, but when you are used to using the Google Notebook, you really miss the sharing capabilities. Evernote has a 'kind of' sharing option, but it boils down to emailing the notes to the person you want to share with, or making your online notebook 'public'. I wish there was a way to make it more collaborative and share with other members exclusively. A kind of versioning so to speak.

  7. Brent Haeseker
    February 23, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    Don't forget it is also a great tool to collect blog ideas!

  8. Zigmas
    February 23, 2009 at 2:39 am

    I use Evernote since January 2008. Earlier I have used Scrapbook, Zotero, Onfolio, Ubernote and Web research ( tested a number of simple Web research (online research) or Web clipping or note taking tools. You can find info about theses tools on my blog Now I use Evernote and Webnotes.
    Web notes enables very easy generate refernce list (titles and URL). I did not find how to do it using Evernote.

    I use more than 100 notebooks in Evernote and more than 500 tags.
    Typicall I use Evernote in cycle mode:
    - at first I save a clip and add one or two tags and some service tags (e.g. level of importance and date when I plan to read more detail)
    - then when I need info for some project I browse once more and then I add more tags and sometimes type my notes
    - then I select using search (importance tag and a few tags or keywords)
    - then I browse once more, change importance (priority) of clips
    - then I search once more and export salected info as html file and read it using browser
    - Then I copy to Word file, add my notes and URL

    I did not find how to generate reference lists.
    It would be very useful.
    In any case Evernote it is very useful when you deal with a number of projects and a lot of topics.
    I like perfect search features when I use a number of keywords and I see them in different colors.

    Best wishes
    Best wishes

  9. Seth
    February 21, 2009 at 10:05 am

    My favorite use of Evernote is to keep online receipts. I clip a screenshot of only the important part of my receipt to Evernote, add tags, and I have a receipt filing system. I don't just use it for purchase receipts, either. I use it for bank transactions, electronic bill payment, and anything else I do online.

    • Scott
      March 27, 2009 at 1:54 am

      Evernote had a recent deal with shoeboxed.
      If you have evernote you can get a discount from shoeboxed.

      Shoeboxed helps you with your receipts. At the level I have it we mail them our receipts and get them back all scanned, in electronic form for online use or download, and the originals return via snailmail.

      We're pretty happy with this service.

      I'm pretty sure with evernote you can create a blog. You just share a notebook and only put one note in it that you update. Then tell all your friends where it is. That way you aren't out of evernote when you work on it.

  10. venkat
    February 20, 2009 at 8:33 am

    Evernote is very useful ,what intresting is IE8 release candidate also suports evernote that makes IE8 final will support Evernote,that's great news for IE fans.

  11. Serhat Sine
    February 20, 2009 at 2:29 am

    Reading and taking necessary actions regarding to biz emails is a big part of my job. Everyday, I'm taking a lot of notes from my Outlook emails, WebPages even my credentials 2 Evernote. At the end of the day, when im turning back 2my home, reading my Evernote(s) is a mandatory job. No need 2argue about Evernote's benefits

  12. T.J. Mininday
    February 19, 2009 at 11:49 pm

    Great list. I like Evernote. I use it on my iPhone and on the web, but why doesn't the Firefox extension allow to view the note in the browser without having to actually going to the page. That was one thing I loved about Google Notebook.

  13. Sean
    February 19, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Having an iPhone, I thought I would start making a lot more use of evernotes pictures feature. I imagined myself snapping pictures of my notes constantly and just having them be in Evernote, but so far I've found that the readability is just extremely poor with my iPhone's camera. I still do love Evernote for plain text notes though.

  14. Luis
    February 19, 2009 at 7:54 pm

    i love evernote. i just began to use it as my personal life journal(diary). i used to not write in my journal because of how long it took me to write and because if i remembered about something i wanted to write while i was already writing something else i would forget, but now i can speak into my phone for about 5 minutes about my thoughts feeling and happenings in my day and i get all my ideas in there right away then i upload the file and i can tag it so i can identify it right away when i want to hear it again.

  15. DD
    February 19, 2009 at 6:56 pm

    Don't forget adding your ideas and thoughts by voice - dial2do or jott both work with Evernote very well