How to Sort Notes Alphabetically on an iPhone

How to Sort Notes Alphabetically on an iPhone

Need iPad and iPhone help? Sign up for iPhone Life Insider and I’ll help you with all of your iPhone troubleshooting and iOS-related issues. Here’s a question from an Insider who wanted to know how to sort and search Notes on his iPhone:

Hey Sarah,

I wonder if you can tell me if it's possible to sort Notes and if it's possible to search Notes by keywords? If so, how is that done? 

–Sort Me Out

Hi Sort Me Out,

Unfortunately, there is no straightforward way to sort Notes on your iPhone. The best option is to just create folders for each type of note, so they're easier to manage. One idea I've seen (for those who sync their Notes to iCloud and use a Mac) is to create a folder for each letter of the alphabet in Notes on your Mac. You can then save your notes under the appropriate letter on your iPhone. Or you could use this method to create folders according to whatever system of organization you prefer. If alphabetical sorting is a crucial Notes app feature for you, you may want to try a third-party notes app with that capability.

Fortunately, it's really easy to search Notes in iOS 9. Go into Settings > General > Spotlight Search and scroll down through the list of apps to find Notes. Toggle it on if it's not already. Now when you swipe right on the first Home screen to open Spotlight search, you can type in the name of a note or the content of a note, and the note you are looking for should appear in the search results (you may have to scroll down). If you know what folder a note is in, you can also search that folder for it by pulling down from the top of the screen to bring up a search bar.

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any more questions.

Thank you for such a comprehensive and  thorough answer. Your tip on the alphabetical folders is a very good idea. I've conducted several searches already using your instructions.

Thank you very much.


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Author Details

Sarah Kingsbury's picture

Author Details

Sarah Kingsbury

Sarah Kingsbury is the Editorial Directer at iPhone Life. She manages the web editorial team and oversees all web and newsletter content. A long-time iPhone and Mac enthusiast, Sarah loves teaching people how to use their Apple devices.