10 Basic Tips and Tricks for Evernote Beginners

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Quick Guide to Begin Using Evernote in 10 Easy Steps

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Evernote Tips and Tricks for Beginners in 10 Easy Steps. Evernote

Evernote is an app for capturing and organizing all kinds of information into one digital file. Not only can you type in your own notes, but you can also insert audio, video, images, and document files, all of which are collected in one place. 

Still not sure Evernote's your best bet? Check out this full 2014 Review of 40 Features in Evernote for more detail or compare Evernote with other note-taking options: Quick Comparison Chart of Microsoft OneNote, Evernote, and Google Keep.

Here you'll learn the differences among Notes, Notebooks, Stacks, and Tags, as well as how to use them.

Even if you have never taken a digital note in your life, you can get started in less than 10 minutes by following these quick steps. 

Or, jump to these resources:

02
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Download the Free or Premium Evernote App

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Evernote App in the Google Play Store. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Downloading Evernote is simple but you do need to decide which version you want: free, premium, or business. 

I suggest downloading Evernote from your device's marketplace or app store. You can find these quickly by visiting the Evernote site.

While a free version is available, if you can swing it, the Premium version is a good value. 

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Setup a PIN and 2-Step Verification for Better Security in Evernote

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Evernote Setting Options. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Consider 2-Step verification (premium and business users only) for better security in Evernote. You may also be interested in enabling a PIN or Authorized Apps. Upgrade to Premium by visitiing settings, as shown here.

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Sync Notes Among Multiple Devices through Evernote Cloud

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Syncing Options in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Because Evernote syncs to the Evernote Cloud environment, you will also be prompted to Create an Evernote Account. If you set up an Evernote cloud account, it enables you to share among devices, as mentioned in the next step.

One of the beauties of Evernote can be having all your notes available wherever you go, by syncing all your devices through the cloud.

Do this by selecting Settings (upper right) then Sync Settings, then customizing sync frequency, allowed wireless networks, and more.

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Create a New Notebook in Evernote

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Create a Notebook in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Before creating a bunch of notes in Evernote, I suggest creating a couple notebooks.

Do this by selecting Notebooks then the Add New Notebook (upper right of screen). Enter a name and select OK.

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Create Notes in Evernote in 5 Simple Ways

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Create a Note in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

To create a new note in Evernote, simply click the Note icon with a plus sign.

However, you can capture your ideas a few different way in the Evernote app. I suggest just beginning with regular typing, then taking on more ways when you visit my Intermediate Tips and Tricks for Using Evernote, but here's a list if you would like to jump ahead:

  • Good old typing or keyboard
  • On some devices, handwriting with a stylus
  • Audio / Speaking / Speech to Text
  • Image to Text (Optical Character Recognition) 
  • Email notes to your Evernote email account
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Create Checkboxed To-Do Lists in Evernote

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Create a Checkbox To-Do List in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Making a to-do list to check off later is easy in Evernote.

Open a note then notice the box with a check mark. This creates a to-do list. Alternatively, use the bullet or numbered list tools right next to it. 

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Attach Images, Audio, Video, or Files to Evernote Notes

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Attaching Files to an Evernote Note. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Next, try adding an image, video, or other file to your Evernote note. Look for an attachments icon in the upper right of the interface.

On some devices, you may be able to take a picture right from your device. Otherwise, you may have to first have the file saved to your device.

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Set Evernote Reminders or Alarms

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(c) Set a Simple Reminder in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

You can associate an alarm based on a date or time with a given note in Evernote.

While in a note, click on the alarm clock and specify the time.

10
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Tag and Prioritize Notes in Evernote

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Tag Notes in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

In Evernote, tags make your ideas easier to find, as long as you use them judiciously. Too many tags can sometimes make things complicated. Assign those you think you will remember or use often.

I suggest using underscore tagging for better searchability (ex: Iceland_Itinerary allows me to search for Iceland or Itinerary).

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Create Organizational Stacks in Evernote

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Notebook Stacks in Evernote. (c) Screenshot by Cindy Grigg, Courtesy of Evernote

Once you get going in Evernote, you may find the need to create notebook groupings known as stacks, for better organization.

Simply drag a notebook over a second notebook, click on the little triangle then choose Move to New Stack, or right-click and select the Stack option.

Ready for More?