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What could be more important to anyone starting a home business than to have a way to manage all the information you deem relevant to your business and your life?

Evernote and Starting a Home Business Successfully

Let me introduce you to Evernote, a tool that proclaims it will help you:
  • Remember everything.
  • Capture anything.
  • Access anywhere.
  • Find things fast.
On their website Evernote further explains:
Remember everything “Evernote makes it easy to remember things big and small from your everyday life using your computer, phone, tablet and the web.” Capture anything “Save your ideas, things you like, things you hear, and things you see.” Access anywhere “Evernote works with nearly every computer, phone and mobile device out there.” Find things fast “Search by keyword, tag or even printed and handwritten text inside images.”

Getting Started with Evernote

Evernote’s free version may be all you ever need. Since starting a home business, I’ve been using Evernote and have not felt the need to upgrade to the paid version yet. However, my use of it is expanding as I find more and more uses for it so I have not ruled out an upgrade in the future. There are two ways to get started...
  1. Create an account with Evernote and follow the instructions to download the application software to your device(s). If you are starting a home business, you will be glad to know you can use Evernote on multiple devices (computer, tablet and smartphone). Auto-syncing capabilities will keep them all updated.
  2. Or download the app to your device and follow the instructions to create an account.
Create an Evernote account: Go to http://www.evernote.com . Click on the Create Account link in the upper right-hand corner. Evernote Home Page Enter your email address, choose a username and password and enter the captcha information presented. Click on the Register button at the bottom of the page. Creating an Evernote Account Follow the instructions to download the application to your device(s). If you use Evernote on multiple devices such as your computer, tablet, and smartphone; Evernote will synchronize any changes you make so that all devices are updated with the new information. Or download the application first and then create an Evernote account: Go to http://evernote.com/products/ to download the application to your devices and follow the instructions they will provide to create an Evernote account. Evernote Family of Products   How to Remember Everything Evernote is a multi-featured note-taking utility you will find useful when starting a home business. You create notebooks into which you can place your notes. Organizing your notebooks and the notes within them is up to you but it is important to have a strategy that suits you and your style of filing and retrieving infomation. In the following screenshot your "Notebooks" are seen in the left panel. Just click on a Notebook and it opens in the center panel to reveal snippets of all the notes in that notebook. Click on a note and the full content of the note is displayed in the right panel. In this example I have a notebook named Blog Ideas. One of the notes in that notebook is a blog post titled 14 Ideas To Find Great And Inspiring Blog Topics.   Starting a Home Business by Organizing As you can see the blog post is literally recreated within my note. This brings us to... How to Capture Anything When starting a home business you will encounter many situations where you will want to easily make a note or capture and store an article or web page for later retrieval.There are several ways to create notes or get your information into Evernote including...
  • Create notes from scratch using the editor
  • Email to Evernote - You will be given a unique Evernote email address and anything you email to that address will create a note within Evernote. You can designate within the subject line the note title, the destination notebook and assign tags to the note.
  • Starting a Home Business and Evernote Web Clipper Use the Evernote Web Clipper extension to your browser.  This is a quick and easy way to capture anything you find on the web including articles or selected text. The blog post in the above example was captured and placed into Evernote using the Web Clipper.
  • Scan documents to Evernote - Evernote and Fujitsu have partnered to integrate its Scansnap scanners with Evernote but you can use any scanner to create a pdf file or an image which can be placed in your Evernote notes.
How to Access Anywhere Starting a home business keeps you on the move. You cannot always be in your home office in front of your computer. Evernote apps are available for your tablet and smartphone so you have access to your notes from anywhere. Notes added or changes made are synced so that you will get the same information regardless of the device you are using to access. How to Find Things Fast There are any number of ways to capture and store information but the main thing is retrieval. Can you find it when you want it? Evernote has an excellent search capability which allows you to search your notebooks using simple text searches or more advanced parameters such as date created, note source and notes that contain certain kinds of media such as audio or images. Notes can be tagged with keywords to facilitate retrieval. Resources Evernote provides a number of help resources at their website including:
  • Forum
  • Knowledge base
  • Video tutorials
  • Getting started guides
A third party resource that I have found useful is busyness.com. This is a free membership site that offers a free Evernote training course within the context of being more efficient in getting things done. Anyone starting a home business will benefit from  the resources at this website. Before going too far once you have gotten starting using Evernote, I recommend you think about your notebook and tagging strategy. This will prevent the proliferation of notebooks and tags that can become more difficult to manage. It's like setting up a filing system in your office so give it some thought before diving in. There are tutorials at busyness.com that will give you some ideas on strategy. Starting a home business has a huge potential for information overload. A tool like Evernote can help.   To your business success, Bob Young  
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