Google Keep adds the feature you have been waiting for

Google Keep has had one serious limitation up until now and this is an almost complete lack of facilities to organise your notes. Well now you can and you can collect them into projects, hobbies and more.

Google Keep top tips - get more from this note taking app

When you first start off with Google Keep, it is a brilliant little note taking tool. It is actually part of the Chome browser and because Chrome can sync everything across computers and mobile devices, your notes are available everywhere.

In the past, problems started to arise as more and more notes were added. As the list in Keep grew longer, it became a disorganised muddle and it was hard to find what you wanted.

If you wanted to store notes for different projects, hobbies, work or personal, it was not easy or obvious. One way to do this is to assign colours to different categories of notes, so you could make all work notes green and all personal notes blue.

Not only does this help you to see which notes are which, you can also filter notes by colour. Click the search icon at the top of the Keep window and click a colour to list only those notes in that colour.

Now what colour did I say was personal and what was work? I bet you have forgotten.

Colours are nice, but it is hard to remember what they are all for and they are not that useful.

The one Google Keep feature everyone has been waiting for is labels. They work in a similar way to Gmail labels and you can create them and assign them to notes.

For example, you could create a label for a project you are working on and whenever you create a note for the project, add the label.

To see all the notes in a project you can select the label and all the notes are listed.

If you had abandoned Google Keep because of its lack of organisational features, you can now return to it. You have bother labels and colours. Multiple labels can be assigned, such as for notes that are shared across two projects.

1 Add a Google Keep label

Click the menu button (the three dots) in the toolbar below a note and select Add label.

Google Keep

Add a label to Google Keep notes

2 Select a label

Google Keep now comes with three ready-made labels and you just tick the one (or more) you want.

Google Keep notes

Select a label to add to a Google Keep note

3 Create a new label

You are not limited to these three labels and more can be created. Click where it says Enter label name and type in whatever you want to use, such as a project name.

Create a label for a note

Create a label for a note

4 View labels used in notes

In the lower right corner of each note is the label or labels that are assigned to it. You might find it useful to colour notes as well. That's up to you. You can click a label to show all notes with that label, but we will apply a filter in a different way.

Google Keep labels

Labels appear on the right near the bottom

5 Filter notes using labels

Click the menu button in the top left corner of Google Keep and there is a Labels section. Click the label to list all the notes with that label.

Google Keep labels

Select a label to filter by

Notice that there is an edit icon (a pencil) to the right of the label. That is so you can change the label name if you need to.

Google Keep notes

Notes filtered by label

There does not appear to be an easy way to bulk apply labels, so if you have lots of notes in Keep, you will have to manually go through them and apply labels. It is a pity you cannot apply a label to search results, that would enable you to retrospectively apply labels in bulk.

A lot of people are fans of Evernote and it is a great service, but the software is getting increasingly complex and packed with features some people don't use. Google Keep is a simpler, lightweight, faster tool that has a minimal feature set, but that its attraction.


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1 Comment on Google Keep adds the feature you have been waiting for

  1. I love Google Keep. I started using it when I got my Android phone recently. Very lightweight, it’s on my phone, desktop, iPad. I’ve tried Evernote, OneNote, a few others and this is simple, quick and easy. It has enough tweaks to make it worth using.

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