What is Evernote and How Does It Work?

Have you ever felt so overwhelmed by all the things you need to remember in life? For example, maybe you're out on the town, and you finally think of a solution to that problem at work.  But by the time you get home to write it down, you can’t remember that brilliant idea!  Maybe it would be helpful if you had the ability to store all of your notes for work or school in one place, and organize them better than in the folders on your computer desktop.  Or maybe you need something to track your progress on a task, or even send reminders to you to complete your tasks.

Evernote is a solution to all of these problems. It was created with the philosophy that all of your notes, tasks, and ongoing assignments should be accessible in one place across all of your devices. That way, anytime, and any place, you can record your thoughts or make progress on your work.  You'll never forget anything!

Evernote is a cross-platform online note-taking and organizational system.  In addition to taking notes and organizing them, Evernote can remind you of tasks, help you with checklists, and securely store your important thoughts.  All information stored in Evernote can be accessed from your computer or mobile devices.

How Evernote works

1. Sign up for a free Evernote account and download it on up to two devices.

Visit www.evernote.com and sign up for a free account. All you need to do is enter a valid email address and choose a password, and you’re in!

Enter an email address and password

2. Create and store notes, thoughts, and images.

Using your Evernote account, create a new note and just start typing! Record anything you think you'll need to remember: school work, tasks around the house, your grocery list – the possibilities are endless.

Create notes to record anything significant or that you want to remember

You can even drag and drop files right into the note, including images. Need a reminder to do something around the house? Drop a photo right into your note!

Drag and drop files into your notes

3. Use the editor to change and update your notes as you go.

As you continue with notes or make progress on your tasks, you can use Evernote’s advanced note editor to make changes. Use over 28 functions on Evernote’s editing toolbar to make your note exactly what you want it to be.

Use the Evernote editor to add advances features to your notes

4. Organize your notes into notebooks.

Easily sort your work into notebooks to keep your notes organized; this helps you find what you’re looking for as you work. You can create notebooks for any category of your life, including school, work, home maintenance, personal notes, and absolutely anything else you can imagine.

Sort your notes into Notebooks to stay organized

5. Easily access your notes with Evernote search.

The Evernote search bar can look through your entire library of notes and notebooks to help you find exactly what you’re looking for. Try entering search terms that will help Evernote narrow down the results it shows you as much as possible.

Use the search bar to find anything within your library of notes

You can also create shortcuts to notes you frequently use, update, or refer to.

Create shortbuts to your most frequently-used notes

Try adding "tags" to your notes as well, to make your searches in the future easier. Choose a keyword that relates to your note in some way, such as a particular aspect of your life.

Add tags to your notes to find them easily in the future

6. Share your notes and progress with others.

You can share any note you write with other Evernote users by sending them an email with access to the note. You can also post links to your notes (for your non-Evernote contacts) in Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, or an email.

Share yoour notes with others

Once you have shared your notes with other Evernote users, you can begin using the instant messaging service called “Work Chat.” Start a conversation about an ongoing task, or have them make updates to your notes!

Use the Work Chat function to instant message with your Evernote contacts

50 ways Evernote can improve your life

Now that you know all of the things Evernote can do, you’re probably wondering how you’re going to start using it to improve the organization of your own daily life.  In other words, what exactly is Evernote used for?  Here’s a list to help you get started.

  1. Create and store notes, and organize them into notebooks so you can easily find them.
  2. Create checklists to track your progress on particular tasks.
  3. Manage your employees’ task assignments at work, and see what they have completed in real-time.
  4. Take photos of things you need to remember, and then add them to your notes.
  5. Access your notes and assignments on the go, so you never forget anything.
  6. Share your notes with others to get feedback on your work.
  7. Upload files and access them within your related notes.
  8. Add voice memos to your notes when you need the added touch of your voice to remind you of something.
  9. Set reminders and have Evernote check up on your progress.
  10. Scan documents into your notes.
  11. Create original content like that novel you’ve been writing, a portfolio of your artwork, or the start of an online blog – you can keep it all in one place.
  12. Use it to manage your household – partners or roommates can easily share notes that have to do with home maintenance. Create to-do lists for the house, or have a shared grocery list.
  13. Compile all of your lecture notes for school in one place, and tag important information.
  14. Collaborate on work projects with your colleagues.
  15. Manage group assignments for school – easily add your content, and keep all work in one place and with the same format.
  16. Keep track of all of your brilliant ideas as they come to you: gift ideas, new inventions, or even a new TV series!  Anything you can think of, Evernote can remember.
  17. Use voice recording to remember a song you’re writing, keep images of sheet music or tablature, and keep notes as you write songs.
  18. Save all of the websites you visit with the web clipper add-on. You can go back to them anytime, or remember the most important parts of them.
  19. Keep all the information you may need when on the go: the type of lightbulb you need for the kitchen, the serial number of your laptop, your insurance policy number, the type of filter you need for the house, the ink cartridge type you need for your printer – absolutely anything you need to remember can be at your fingertips.
  20. Plan your vacation by saving information about places you want to visit. You can also make a packing list to help you prepare for the trip.
  21. Create budgets and keep track of your finances to ensure you’re spending your money in the best possible ways.
  22. Create a list of ongoing goals and track your progress. New years’ resolution? No way. Create life resolutions that you are always checking up on.
  23. Create meal plans, or keep track of your food intake (for dieting). This works well if you are using the shared grocery list as well.
  24. Track the progress of your new fitness regime at the gym over time.  Remember everything you did each day to see what’s working for you and what isn’t.
  25. Use Evernote as a substitute for a scheduler or agenda. It can remind you to do tasks every day, and Evernote add-ons can synchronize with your personal calendar to help you make due dates.
  26. Create a "bucket list" for your life, and check off memories off as you make them. You can even add photos to the note to remind you of when you accomplished these life-changing tasks!
  27. Compile all of your contacts in one place for easy access. You can even scan business cards into Evernote and store them paperless-ly.
  28. Keep all of your recipes in one place, and even organize them by category – breakfast, appetizers, main courses, etc.  Add tags such as “fancy” or “cheap” to help you find recipes quickly. Keep track of the ingredients you need, and quickly add them to your ongoing Evernote grocery list!
  29. Keep records of all of your favorite quotes, so you have them in one place.  You'll never struggle to remember who made a particular profound statement.
  30. Store notes from your meetings and presentations, and even use Evernote (Premium) to present your notes as slides for a slideshow.
  31. Keep track of all of the places at which you apply for a job, so you can check up on the status of your applications. You can also store your resume easily in one place, and update it as things change.
  32. Take pictures of your receipts so you always have copies, without needing to keep the paper copies.
  33. Keep notes about memories or images you want to compile in a scrapbooking project.  Or, use Evernote as your digital scrapbook!
  34. Plan events by keeping track of things such as tasks you need to complete, people you need to invite, an RSVP list, and things you still need to buy for the event.  Evernote is like your personal event planning assistant.
  35. Set up reminders to pay your bills, and go paperless by keeping digital copies of all of your bills! !
  36. Don't fret the approach of tax season approaching, because you can use Evernote to organize and keep track of all of the documents you need to do your taxes!
  37. Record the dimensions of your house. When you’re out looking at furniture or something for the home, you’ll never have to wonder if it will fit where you want to put it. Keep track of paint colors and décor, and always have the information you need for that ongoing home improvement project.
  38. Keep track of changing prices for big purchases you want to make. You can see when prices go up and down on that high definition television, or when the best time to book a flight to Paris will be.
  39. Use Evernote when writing an essay for school to keep track of all of your references and sources, so you never have to search for them again.
  40. Keep track of where you store personal items. Label boxes in your home, and then list what is inside them on Evernote.   That way, you can easily find where you put things, and never have to search all through the house to find something again.
  41. Use Evernote as a teacher to plan your classes and keep track of your curriculum progress. You can even use it to keep track of student grades, or other important information about your students.
  42. Transcribe your handwritten notes, and add the digital versions to your notebooks.
  43. Store digital copies of the manuals for all of your household items and appliances.  Then, get rid of the bulky paper guides you rarely need to consult!
  44. Store all of your membership or loyalty numbers in one place.  You won’t need to carry around dozens of cards that you rarely use in your wallet.
  45. Keep track of client information from consultations or lengthy business deals.  You'll never forget details about what your clients wanted.
  46. Store the confirmation numbers for anything you book: car rentals, hotels, flights, and more.
  47. Keep track of clothing sizes for your family, so you can shop without them and know that what you buy will fit them!
  48. Catalogue items in your house for various purposes.  For example, if you want to donate some clothing or sell some old records, you’ll know exactly what you have.
  49. Catalogue your life!  Use Evernote as a diary, and record your personal experiences and those special moments you want to remember. Create a journal notebook!
  50. Use the voice recorder to set up interviews. Remember everything that was said by being able to listen again, and then take your own additional notes.


Now you know what Evernote is, and how you can start using it to help you in your daily life. In the rest of our Evernote course, we will teach you about how to use it safely, the costs associated with Evernote, and how to use it on the web, Android devices, and Apple devices. You can also check out our articles on the best add-ons for Evernote, and our tips and tricks to using Evernote effectively.