I don’t remember who exactly turned me on to Evernote – but whoever it was, I sincerely thank you! Evernote has become an integral tool to my business and was especially helpful when I was working full-time in the tax office. I was finally able to stop emailing myself links for resources and articles I wanted to read, but instead, add them to a Note.
Here’s how Evernote describes itself:
As one workspace that lives across your phone, tablet, and computer, Evernote is the place you write free from distraction, collect information, find what you need, and present your ideas to the world.
Which is a fancy way of saying, it’s a piece of software that you can load across all your platforms (smartphone, tablet, and multiple computers) that you can use just like a word processor to create documents, called Notes. And then these Notes instantly sync up across all devices.
I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t use Evernote to its full capacity! Since I now (thankfully!) work from a single work-space at my home desktop computer, I’m less worried about syncing information between different devices and locations. Right now, I don’t even have Evernote installed on my phone!
Here’s how I use it:
Keep track of URLs, snippets of copy, and codes that I use all the time.
The URL for my TimeTrade calendar? In Evernote!
The copy I use at the end of every blog post? In Evernote!
The hex color codes for my logos? In Evernote!
I also have a client who pays me hourly – so I keep my “timecard” in Evernote. At the end of the month, I email this to my accountant and she creates my invoice.
Stuff I love:
It’s free! I’ve never felt the need to upgrade, but at a measly $5 a month, it’s a steal. I love tools that WORK well and that don’t cost and arm and a leg. (Or lock you into a long contract or handcuff you to their tech!)
FIERCELY easy to use. I know a bunch of people who swear by Google docs – but for me, they’re just too complicated for a single-person note-taking system. I love it when I don’t have to read ANY TYPE of “help” documentation to get started. (Although the Evernote “help” function is outstanding as well!)
While I primarily use Evernote for written documents, I’ve also used it for audio files. When I was stuck in a brainstorm and found myself talking it out, I turned on the record function in Evernote and had it record my thoughts. It was much faster than trying to dig up my hand-held digital voice recorder. (Seriously, I own one! Somewhere…)
ALL my notes are there – safe! There are some things I like to refer to over and over and it’s all open – just a click away. I don’t have to remember where I saved it on my computer.
Evernote instantly saves my notes as I update them. I don’t have to worry if the power cuts out, if I close the program without saving, or having to remember where on my computer I saved something.
I can email the information directly from the application without having to install an email program!
I can make changes to the text: font, color, size, bolding, etc. While I don’t compose long documents in Evernote, this word processor-like ability has really come in handy.
Stuff I’m not too sure about:
Evernote instantly saves my notes as I update them. Which means I’ve accidentally changed something, clicked to a different note, and lost my original text. There isn’t a good way to undo or revert to an older Note version.
It constantly updates! I’m glad that the designers want to keep it up to date, but I prefer being given the OPTION to update my software! There are times when I don’t want to update NOW: I’m running memory-hog programs, I’m on limited bandwidth, or I just can’t afford to have One More Thing running on the computer.
The most recent note is at the top. This is usually fine except I have three Notes I use nearly daily and don’t want to have slide down too far: my blog post footer HTML, my TimeTrade calendar link, and the copy I paste onto Facebook for a FanPageFriday party. Every so often, I go in and “alter” the note so it pops to the top of the list again. This is usually just adding in a carriage return or changing the font size.
I wish it had a basic spreadsheet function in addition to the word processor function. There have been times where having the same capabilities but in a spreadsheet would be awesome!
The overall review of Evernote:
Outstanding! I know there are other tools out there that can do all this and more but I love the basic-ness of Evernote. I have it installed on my desktop and laptop and on the computer I used to use at the tax office. I know that everything syncs for me and it’s all available at my fingertips.
It did take me a while to adjust my mindset to know that I could create Notes in Evernote instead of notes to myself in Word and saved to my computer! Especially for things like my blog post footer HTML and the hex color codes for my logos!