Bookmarks are but one way to save webpages so you can easily return to them later. Okay, your opinion on ease may differ. There are also many other methods for saving content, organizing, and syncing among devices.

Bookmarks History

Normally, you’ll see those two words in the reverse order. On the menu bar, History is commonly to the left of Bookmarks. Nonetheless, digital bookmarks have been around since 1993 and have been a common way to list webpages for future reference.

In any web browser, you can easily add a bookmark to save a website address, give it the name of your choice, and organize it in a folder. And that’s about it. Bookmarks generally don’t offer any further systems of organization.

Browsers also have some mechanism for editing or organizing bookmarks so you can create folder hierarchies, change bookmark names, etc.

Instapaper, Pocket, Reading List

Read Later

There are a number of applications that bill themselves as bookmarking services and represent another approach to saving webpages. Reading List (Safari), Instapaper, and Pocket are in this category.

Reading List is the simplest of the bunch but captures the original intent of Instapaper to reduce the clutter and make a webpage easier to read. Check out this recent Apple iPhone video demo of the feature.

Instapaper and Pocket offer standalone applications and browser plugins to easily save webpages and tag with categories. Reading List is free and syncs across devices but only with Safari, while the others offer free and paid options and are browser-agnostic.

Wayback Machine

Wayback Machine

Looking back, long before services like Pocket existed, I saved news articles on my computer as PDFs. It’s really easy on a Mac to create a PDF of anything you can print. This was even before Safari came along with the ability to save a webpage archive file and retain page links.

Speaking of the past, a completely skew approach is to rely on the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine to see what webpages used to look like. I wouldn’t recommend this for saving pages to view later but it’s a fun concept.

Even cooler is that the Wayback Machine was recently featured on Jeopardy!

Graffidi research informed me of myriad approaches to saving online content. People we spoke with were very inventive. What are your methods and have you changed habits over the years? How well organized are your bookmarks?

If you’re ready for some spring cleaning and want insight on how to approach it or coaching to accomplish it, give me a call.