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How to Organize Bookmarks

How to Organize Bookmarks

Marcin Michalak
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May 15, 2020

Have you ever struggled to remember a site you’ve visited in the past? This is why bookmarks are so helpful. A bookmark in the traditional sense helps you find your place in a book. On the internet, a bookmark helps you save links you find valuable.

However, since the internet is an endless stream of data people often find themselves in a bit of a bookmarking pickle. If you’re struggling with stacks of bookmarks and don’t know what to do with them then this article is for you.

Benefits of Organizing Your Bookmarks

As you’re painfully aware, one of the primary benefits of organizing your bookmarks is providing some form of order to your list of links. However, there are other unique benefits for organizing bookmarks.

These benefits include:

  • Increases productivity
  • Navigate to sites you use quickly
  • Gets rid of clutter
  • Eliminates the need for excessive tabs
  • Allows you to save things quickly for later use

Organizing your bookmarks is a simple way to turn a 5-minute search into a 2-second task. This process will become more important as you acquire more bookmarks or spend more time on the internet.

Types of Bookmark Managers

Now that you have a brief understanding of how bookmarks are advantageous we will discuss the different types of bookmark managers. These types include:

  1. Browser-based bookmark managers
  1. SaaS bookmark managers


Browser-based Bookmark Managers

Browser-based bookmarks use a browser’s internal bookmarking feature. For example, Chrome’s bookmark manager allows you to manage bookmarks in folders. Firefox and Safari also have similar bookmarking capabilities.


SaaS Bookmark Managers

SaaS (Software as a Service) bookmark managers are the evolution of browser-based management. These bookmark managers often use extensions that allow users to use the platform inside any browser.

SaaS bookmark managers like Mailist include more features than browser-based bookmark managers. For example, Chrome’s manager allows you to save your links in folders. However, they do not send you reminders to view unread links.

Now that you understand the different types of bookmark managers let's show you how to organize your bookmarks.

How to Organize Bookmarks in Chrome

To organize your bookmarks in Chrome the process is quite simple. Follow these steps below.

  1. Navigate to your Chrome menu then select bookmark manager
How to organize bookmarks in Chrome?
  1. Once selected a new tab will open. This tab displays the browser’s bookmark manager as illustrated below. Notice the manager is composed of folders. Essentially, Chrome’s bookmark manager works akin to a file system. However, keep in mind that you can store bookmarks outside a folder or mistakenly place them in the wrong folder. Therefore when adding a bookmark using Chrome always double-check the folder selected for accuracy.
Google Chrome bookmarks manager


  1. Using Chrome’s bookmark manager you can open all bookmarks in a folder, rename, delete, reorganize, and even export bookmarks into a .csv file. This is useful when you want to transfer your bookmarks to an external bookmark service provider.


How to Add a Bookmark to Your Chrome Bookmark Manager

  1. To add a bookmark in Chrome navigate to the Chrome menu, then select bookmark this tab or bookmark all tabs.
Book mark this tab in Chrome
Note: Bookmarking this tab will bookmark the tab you are currently viewing. If you select bookmark all tabs the manager will bookmark every open tab.


  1. After selecting a bookmarking option (“this” or “all”) a modal will appear that allows you to organize the bookmark into a folder. Keep in mind, you are in charge of naming conventions and organization so be sure to give your bookmark a memorable and descriptive title.  
Changing chrome bookmark title


Using Mailist to Organize Your Bookmarks In Chrome

If you’re a casual internet surfer using Chrome’s bookmark manager may be helpful. However, after a while bookmarks sitting in folders become almost impossible to manage long term. Like any file cabinet these resources become obsolete, they are not searchable programmatically, and often outgrow initial categorization. Mailist solves these challenges at the onset. More importantly, you can still use your favorite browsers like Chrome and Firefox with even better organization capabilities.

To start organizing your bookmarks on Chrome with Mailist follow the steps below.

  1. Create an account on Mailist - sign up here
  1. Download the Mailist extension for Chrome - download here
Mailist Chrome extension


  1. Once the extension is added to Chrome you can begin saving links by simply clicking the extension then selecting “Add Page to Mailist”.
Add page to Mailist

Here’s a great tip. When using Mailist you can organize content by “tags”. The tagging system is more flexible than a folder system as you can select multiple tags for one page. For example, if a page is relevant to social media content and blog content that page will appear in the results of every tag. In contrast, a folder system will require duplicate links.

How to Organize Bookmarks in Firefox

We understand that Chrome is not everyone’s defacto browser. Firefox is also a popular browser with similar bookmarking capabilities as Chrome. Let’s walk through how to organize your bookmarks in Firefox.

  1. Navigate to your Firefox menu then select bookmark manager
Firefox bookmarks manager
  1. Once selected a modal will appear. This modal displays the browser’s bookmark manager as illustrated below. Firefox also uses the folder system however it is a bit more advanced than Chrome’s as it includes tagging capabilities.
Firefox - managing bookmarks


How to Add a Bookmark to your Firefox Bookmark Manager

  1. To add a bookmark in Firefox navigate to the URL section, then select the star icon. Once selected a modal will appear that allows you to add the bookmark details.
Adding bookmarks in Firefox
Note: You can also choose to add a bookmark via the Firefox menu. In the menu, you have the option to add the current tab or all open tabs.


  1. After entering the information click done and your bookmark will be saved in the appropriate folder. Again, you are in charge of naming conventions and organization so be sure to give your bookmark a memorable and descriptive title.  


Using Mailist to Organize Your Bookmarks In Firefox

To start organizing your bookmarks on Firefox with Mailist follow the steps below.

  1. Create an account on Mailist - sign up here
  1. Download the Mailist add on for Firefox - download here

Mailist Bookmarks Manager add-on for Firefox
  1. Once added to Firefox you can begin saving links by simply clicking the extension in the upper right-hand corner of the browser then selecting “Add Page to Mailist”

Mailist for Firefox Add-on

Why You Should Use Mailist Vs. Other Bookmark Managers

Mailist alternatives?

As mentioned above there are different types of bookmark managers. You’re probably wondering why you should use Mailist vs. other bookmark managers. Interestingly, Mailist takes the bookmark management solution a step further by implementing features that make bookmarks even more effective in your day to day process. These features include:

  • Reliability and Portability
  • Collection Management
  • Email Reminders
  • Curated and Shareable Lists

Let’s discuss why these features make bookmark management more effective.

Reliability and Portability

The concept of saving all your important links and resources in a browser is akin to saving your favorite recipes in a notebook. While it may be an option that works for the time being, in the long run, it puts your collection at risk. Browser bookmark management is antiquated and relies heavily on the health of your browser or devices.

We’ve seen many frustrated users in support forums asking for help to restore their bookmarks due to a failed sync, conflicting device updates, or a problem with an account. Just take a look at this thread below.

Readability and portability of bookmarks managers
Source: https://support.google.com/chrome/thread/3496826?hl=en

In short, your browser was not built to manage bookmarks, it was built to browse the internet. In contrast, Mailist was built to manage your bookmarks. It’s also not reliant on any specific browser or device. This means you can access your links on any device at any time.

Collection Management

Bookmarks are a lot like life, they are in constant need of reorganization. Mailist has some interesting features like bulk tagging and broken or inactive link detection. These features are excellent for maintaining the integrity of your bookmarking system.

Mailist Bulk Tagging - bookmarks management

Email Reminders

One of the biggest bookmark challenges we noticed is that we have a habit of bookmarking content and never actually reading it. The habit of saving content you never review is a waste of energy and resources. Instead of letting your bookmarks “go to waste”, Mailist will send you a list of unread links weekly. You can also decide when you want to receive the newsletter and what type of bookmarks you should receive based on your unique system.

Email reminders in Mailist

Curated and Shareable Lists

Mailist doesn’t stop at just email reminders. Instead, your weekly emails can be repurposed as curated resources you can share online. Each newsletter you receive is viewable in a browser and can be shared online. Overall, Maillist’s functional and scalable features make it an excellent option for organizing your bookmarks in the long run.

Tips on How to Organize Your Bookmarks

How to organize your bookmarks

Apart from functional aspects like using Chrome, Firefox, and Mailist we have some additional tips that if followed, will improve your bookmark organization. These tips include:

  • Naming Conventions
  • Functional Hierarchy
  • Be Mindful of Search

Let’s address these tips in further detail below.

Naming Conventions

Naming conventions are essentially agreed upon naming schemes. When organizing your bookmarks half the battle is ensuring you’ll be able to identify a resource when you need it.

When bookmarking a source you can’t rely on the metadata or prefilled data provided by the page as it may not be descriptive enough for your specific system.

For example, I may decide to bookmark an Instagram post for design inspiration. Here’s an example of a link below.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CALaO7lFAbh/?utm_source=ig_web_button_share_sheet

The title of this link is automatically pulled from the link data which is:

Ampfluence on Instagram: “There are so many ways to discover content on Instagram but what we want to know is how you do it personally. Do you prefer to…”

As you can see above this title will make finding the resource in the future almost impossible. Instead, it’s a better idea to provide a title that’s relevant to your specific data management goals.

In this case, since design inspiration is the high-level goal I’d probably give the link a title similar to that listed below.

Design Inspiration - Instagram - Ampfluence

The title follows the scheme “Goal - Platform - Source”. There’s no right or wrong scheme here as every goal is different. However, it’s important to use a consistent pattern throughout your title naming practices. This will help you manage your bookmarks at scale.  

Functional Hierarchy

When choosing tags it's important to think about tags in terms of a functional hierarchy since tags will be used to group your resources. A functional hierarchy ensures your links are grouped logically. The easiest way to explain this is by using a food pyramid. Each part of a food pyramid has an overarching category similar to a tag, like, fruits and vegetables. Being mindful of your hierarchy when creating and assigning tags will lead to a more logical bookmarking system.

Avoid creating tags that use detailed words or phrases. For example, a product skew is not a good tag because you’ll never remember it and it also clutters your bookmark manager with tags you don’t need.

Be Mindful of Search

This tip falls in line with naming conventions but it’s a very important consideration that should be elaborated on. As your bookmarks increase over time you may end up with hundreds of bookmarks. When this happens, it’s important to consider words or phrases you’ll be using to search for items.

To ensure your bookmarks are searchable take a few minutes to jot down all the reasons you plan on bookmarking content. Then come up with a common naming convention that makes these items searchable.

For example, if the goal for bookmarking was to create a collection of recipes I can then decide to preface every title with the type of recipes like dinner or dessert. This will help me easily search for specific types of recipes with ease.  

If you follow these three tips above you’ll be bookmarking your content using proven data management strategies. The result will yield a very organized set of bookmarks.

We hope you enjoyed this article. If you believe it was helpful be sure to like and share it on social.

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