With a whopping 4.2 billion pages on the Internet, chances are you’re going to stumble on a blog post you want to read. In the past, you’d use a printer (gasp!) or a Read Later app (like Pocket or Instapaper). But the ascent of note-taking (Evernote and Roam), database (Airtable) and all-purpose productivity apps (like the Notion app) has been accompanied by a new feature: their own web clippers. How does the Notion Web Clipper work? Is it effective? And how does it integrate with Notion’s other powerful features?
The Notion web clipper explained
Are you ready to kiss the days of bookmarking seven hundred tabs of articles you want to read or reference and later? Is your bookmark bar flooded with unread “must reads?” Well kiss those days goodbye. Notion’s clipper (which is free to download) allows you to save web pages directly into your Notion workspace with a single-click. Then, it lets you save, tag, and categorize every clipping using Notion’s powerful features (like databases and formulas). The clipper conveniently works with both Google Chrome and Firefox (not Safari, unfortunately) and on both the iOS and Android operating systems.
How to use the Notion clipper on desktop
Make sure you’ve got the right tools. To start clipping on your desktop, you’ll have to download the Notion Web Clipper extension for Chrome or Firefox.
Once you’ve downloaded and installed the clipper, you’ll see a little Notion icon in the top right-hand corner of your browser. After you’ve found an article or post you’d like to clip, simply click the icon, select the appropriate page or workspace, and hit Save Page.
Anything you save will automatically go into a workspace called My Links. You can create your own personalized pages ahead of time and alternately save your links inside of your custom pages or tables.
Open Notion and navigate to the page/workspace where you’ve saved your clips. You’ll see whole articles appear in seconds! So satisfying!
How to use the Notion clipper on Mobile
Make sure you’ve got the newest version of Notion’s app for either iOS or Android.
Find an article you’d like to clip in your browser. Hit the Share button in the top right hand corner, scroll through your apps to find Notion, and select it.
Select the folder or workspace where you’d like to save the post and voilà, the entire post magically appears in your Notion workspace. It’s that easy.
What’s happening behind the Scenes
Just like other Read Later apps like Pocket or Instapaper, Notion’s web clipper copies all of the contents of the webpage into a new Notion page including the images, rich text formatting and hyperlinks all in a super-clean format. You can later go in and edit, highlight, and take notes on it.
How the Notion Web clipper compares to its competitors
The obvious competitor to Notion is Evernote, the OG of note-taking apps. Its users will quickly point out that Evernote does two things really well: simple note-taking and web-clipping. Notion, on the other hand, doesn’t box itself in as simply a note-taking app – it brands itself as “the all in one workspace” Notion’s users have pointed out that Notion inconsistently clips full articles, sometimes only clipping a paragraph or a link and also struggles to adequately clip tables. It tends to have difficulty clipping from big sites like Medium.com or sites with pay-walls. On the other hand, Evernote’s web clipper doesn’t suffer from the same reliability issues and can clip PDFs, screenshots, annotations, and full page screen captures.
What Notion sometimes lacks in web-clipping though, it seems to make up for in it’s broad range of tools that far exceed the reaches of Evernote.
Notion’s web clipper can trigger much deeper workflows
Given Notion’s built-in databases and tables, once you’ve clipped a blog post there’s a lot you can do with it, including:
- Sorting the articles by created date or modified date
- Using linked databases to create shareable galleries (use our template gallery for inspiration)
- Creating formulas to score and resurface your favorite reads
- Associating clippings with specific tasks (using a GTD framework)
- Linking clippings with other Notion Integrations (like Readwise for Kindle highlights)
The Notion web clipper is a solid addition to a very powerful app. It’s got room for improvement in its clipping efficacy and Safari compatibility, but it will streamline your note-taking and knowledge management workflows.