Tips & Stories

5 Simple Ways to be More Productive with Evernote on Your Phone

5 Simple Ways to be More Productive with Evernote on Your Phone

Posted by SiNing Y Chan on 10 Feb 2017

Posted by SiNing Y Chan on 10 Feb 2017

For some of us, smartphones have become one of the greatest threats to our productivity. For others, they are the greatest productivity tool ever invented. With Evernote, you can unleash the power of your handheld computer to optimize your productivity.



1. Use Evernote widgets and quick note options

Evernote widgets and quick note options were designed for taking notes at the speed of thought (ok, not quite that fast, but still pretty fast).

Widget options

With Evernote widgets, you can quickly jot down text notes, snap photos, and create reminders, all without opening the Evernote app. You can even set up the widget to display recently-viewed notes on the lock screen. Evernote widget options vary slightly on Android and iPhones.


Quick note options

If you already have Evernote open, long press the ‘new note’ button (‘+’) to view options similar to those found on the widget: record audio, snap a photo, or set up a reminder.


iPhone 6s/6s Plus/7s/7s Plus, running iOS 10, come with the 3D Touch feature that lets you deep press Evernote from any Home screen to bring up all of the quick note options even faster. On Android, quick note options also include handwritten notes and file attachments.

2. Save and auto-save emails to specific project notebooks

Many of you know how easy it is to save emails to Evernote. But, wait, there’s more—you can forward emails to a specific notebook so email content can live where any of your related project files, meeting notes, and online research already live.

To save an email from your phone, simply open the email, forward it to your unique email address, and prepend the name of any personal notebook (like this: “@My Notebook”) in the ‘Subject’ line. The contents of your email will automatically be saved as new note in the specified notebook, without needing to open Evernote.


Microsoft Outlook users can also use the Evernote add-in to clip Outlook emails directly into an Evernote notebook. This add-in, which has already been available on Mac and Windows for some time, is now on the Outlook mobile app for iOS.


Automate email forwarding to Evernote

If you find yourself frequently forwarding the same types of emails to Evernote, set up custom email filters to forward emails based on criteria such as, the sender or keywords in the subject line:

  • Forward all emails sent from “Google Analytics” with the phrase “weekly report” in the subject line to your “Sales Reports” notebook.
  • Append the contents of any emails labeled “Task” to a “Weekly Team Meetings” note by replacing the email subject line with “Weekly Team Meetings Note + “ Learn more »ios-append-email-to-note

Explore IFTTT for more ways to auto-save Gmail messages to Evernote:

TIP: Set up email forwarding filters and automations on your desktop computer. Then, use your phone to trigger auto-forwarding by adding labels, stars, or updating subject lines.

3. Share notes and notebooks to minimize text messaging

Why waste time sending frequent reminders to your project team to review meeting agendas week after week?  Share a URL link to a shared note or a shared notebook instead. Anyone you’ve shared the link with can view the contents of a shared note or notebook, even if they don’t use Evernote. Note: Individual business notes can be shared as URL links. In order to minimize the sharing of company information, business notebooks, however, cannot be shared as a URL link.

When sharing project notebooks with others who use Evernote, you can set up note reminders to notify others whenever you add or update notes. Individuals who’ve joined your shared notebook can subscribe to email reminders and be notified of your changes.


4. Find things faster with search filters, saved searches, and shortcuts

Evernote search filters, saved searches, and shortcuts are three secret weapons that can help you quickly find what you need, when you need it.

Search filters

Search filters let you exclude any notes you know aren’t relevant to your search. Save time by simply narrowing down your search results.

  • iPhoneEvernote’s latest redesign of the iOS app comes with premade note tag and reminder filters. Tap the alarm clock button at the top of your note list to bring up a list of all the notes with reminders. Tap the tag button to bring up all the notes labeled with select tags.ios-search-filters-reminders-and-tags
  • Android – Tap the ‘Search’ button (magnifying glass) at the top of any note list, enter search terms, tap ‘Refine Your Search’, then select a search filter, such as ‘To-Do’s’ (to bring up any notes with checklists). Tap ‘Apply filters’ to see your search results.

PRO TIP: Want to geek out on advanced searches and take search filters to another level?
Learn more »

Saved searches

Saved searches make it easier for you to execute searches you frequently use. Once you’ve saved a set of search parameters (such as keywords and filters) as a ‘saved search’, you can select it at anytime to re-run it.


If there are notes, notebooks, or tags you frequently refer to, save them as shortcuts to save yourself a few extra taps. The ‘Shortcuts’ button is found in the navigation menu (Android) or on the tab bar (iPhone).

5. Convert reminders into calendar events

Evernote note reminders notify you to take some sort of action on a specific note. Once you’ve set up an alarm for your reminder, you’ll receive a notification email at the specified date and time.

Afraid you’ll miss the email notification? Use the Cronofy calendar connector to automatically convert all your reminders into events on your calendar. With Cronofy connected to a calendar that syncs with your phone, you can reschedule, rename, and clear reminder notifications from your calendar, without ever needing to launch Evernote.

Still prefer having a simple, task management app on your phone? Try Swipes, a to-do list app that was designed to work with Evernote on both Android and iPhones.

Swipes is aptly named for the simple, swiping gestures that make it easy to manage your checklists. Task completed? Select the task and simply swipe right to check it off. Need more time? Swipe left to select a time to postpone the task for later.

Modern life is increasingly dependent on how well we optimize our time and our resources. If smartphones have become, in a sense, our remote office, then Evernote is a virtual desktop where we can stay focused, and get things done, no matter where we are.


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16 Comments RSS

  • David

    Are there plans to update the new iOS version to no longer ask us to input our iTunes password daily? I think the new version has a lot of nice things going for it but so far there appear to have been too many details that weren’t paid enough attention before the release.

    • SiNing Chan

      Yes. The latest 8.1 release comes with a fix to the iTunes prompt issue, which affected some of our users. For more info and feedback regarding the v8.1 release, please visit the Community Forum:

  • Erico

    What do you think about it?? Look Store#3. No to-do list?? :/

    • SiNing Chan

      This is an excellent article. Thanks for sharing! (I’ve already clipped it to Evernote.) I, personally, agree that To-do lists in and of themselves can be useless—which is why I love the Cronofy calendar sync mentioned in Tip #5 in my post. I was excited about this tool because it puts to-do’s straight into my calendar from an Evernote note reminder. For people who do like to-do lists, I think it matters how they are used (as are all tools). The way that the GTD approach ( suggests to-do lists be used is quite good. When it comes to productivity, I think there are principles we should follow, while allowing space for different preferences, temperaments, and styles.

  • Edrin

    Could we get presentation mode added back into the iPad version? I use Evernote for regular speaking engagements and that change left me without a critical tool!

    • x

      Please bring back presentation mode to the iPhone too!

  • Baker

    If Evernote would add a built-in central/shared calendar, that would push us to a business or premium account.

    • SiNing Chan

      Thanks for the suggestion. With so many different calendars customers currently use, I would guess that a built-in, centralized calendar might not be a top priority at the moment. On the other hand, it’s valuable to hear from customers, like yourself, what types of features/functionalities you’d pay for. Many of our Product Managers are active on our Evernote Community forums, so please do share your thoughts there:

  • Zully Hernandez

    These are awesome tips! Didn’t know about he long press options on my iPhone. Going to start using that right away!

  • Dave Yuhas

    “To save an email from your phone, simply open the email, forward it to your unique email address, and prepend the name of any personal notebook (like this: “@My Notebook”) in the ‘Subject’ line.” Puts forwarded emails in the Inbox notebook and not the @Notebook Name.

  • Robert

    I’ve used Evernote for many years now. However, the same formatting errors are still present. Perhaps the Evernote employees don’t use Evernote for text in notes? Extra line spaces, weird partial line-spacing, fonts, etc. occur particularly when editing text. This happens on my desktop and phone, both my Android and iPhone. I’m wanting to go Premium but I just can’t as these errors make me think that the software isn’t well supported. Are there plans to fix these errors? I asked Evernote support a few years ago and they said these are well-known, so I’m confused as to why they can’t be solved? I’ve spent a lot of time re-formatting notes every day over the years so they don’t look all screwbally.

    • dlbilling

      I am so glad to know I am not the only one who feels this way about text formatting! I have been a Premium user for a number of years and I keep thinking things will be fixed, but I have had the same question as you… Do Evernote employees not use Evernote for real-world things and not for formatting text content? Or even capturing Webpages from an iPhone/iPad and want to add content at the time of capture or later? Even the new table design caused me to shake my head—now there is a large vertical space above all tables and the formatting is missing basic functions like being able to change the color of bottom gridline of a single row. They finally fixed the hanging indent for ordered (numbered) and unordered (bulleted) lists, but not for checkboxes. Evernote does a lot of things very well and then it seems they get your hopes up with other things, but there ends up being obvious issues that could be fixed so easily…and then it seems they stay that way for years.

  • jwjb

    Just love Evernote and have been using it since January 28, 2010, and currently have 18,289 notes. Unfortunately, in the current Evernote iOS and past iOS versions there is a large lag of several seconds in saving notes. This has led me to revert back to Instapaper for iOS which saves in under a second with unlimited uploads in the free plan which is helpful too. So now, I use Evernote for everywhere except on iOS where I hope Evernote is improved in a future iOS version.

  • Dan

    Has anyone had any success getting the cronofy integration to work? I’ve tried it a couple of times and it never works.

  • Lee Sullivan

    Can’t find Evernote for Outlook in my Outlook 365 account. Sounds great and would love to use it.

  • gamesworldmania

    Very Nice Article keep up the work good