How to Make a Digital Planner in Keynote

You’ve probably seen digital planners all over social media, and maybe you’re wondering how to make your own. Today, I explain how to create a digital planner in the keynote app and how to use it. Grab your iPad let’s create your dream planner!

A digital planner is a great way to get organized and stay on track. There are a few things you need to consider when creating a digital planner. First, decide what software or application you are going to use. In this tutorial, I’m going to use the Apple app called Keynote. This app can be found on the iPad, iPhone, and Mac computer.

Windows and Android users, follow the instructions on this tutorial to learn how to create a digital planner in PowerPoint. The Windows version of Keynote.

Once you have your software picked out, you’ll need to come up with a design. This is where you’ll get to be creative! Think about what sort of layout you want, what colors you want to use, and what sort of information you want to include. Once you have a design in mind, it’s time to start putting your digital planner together. 

This page contains affiliate links to products I use, love, and highly recommend. I receive a small commission for purchases made through links in this blog post. Thank you for your support! 


What is a digital planner?

A digital planner is a notebook inside your iPad. In the notebook, you can draw and write with your Apple pencil, type using the text-box tool, and click on the hyperlinks. If you would like to learn in detail what is a digital planner and how to use it, please refer to this blog post.

Look at the image below. Notice how I was able to type text using the textbox tool. I also added cute flowery washi tapes to the planner. Those washi tapes are actually images! I can also use my Apple pencil to draw on the planner. Videos speak louder than images, please watch the video below to learn how to use my digital planner:


Editable Digital Planners

Skip the DIY Part

From dated to undated, find the perfect planner and edit it any way you like! Yup, all my digital planners are editable, which means you can:

  • Change the cover to ANY color or image
  • Change the names, text, and colors of the tabs
  • Add, delete, & move the tabs any way you like
  • Edit all the hyperlinks in the tabs and index. Yup, every single link can be edited.
  • Change the fonts and text on all the spreads
  • Use my blog’s FREE printables as spreads or edit the spreads that come with the planner
  • The planner also includes: dot, blank, graph, and ruled papers that can easily be changed and edited.

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How to make a digital planner in keynote

Before you start creating the planner, decide if you want a horizontal or vertical planner. In this tutorial, I’m going to explain how to create a digital planner in the shape of an open notebook, similar to a bullet journal. The planner includes tabs and hyperlinks.

The image features an iPad pro with a image of an open notebook inside the iPad. Above the iPad, there is a digital planner/open notebook with arrows pointing to the tabs of the planner.

A. How to add color to the cover of the planner

1. Open the Keynote app on your computer and select the “Basic White” presentation > select “create”.

2. On the top-right of the screen, select “Document” > on slide size, click the drop-down menu, and select “custom-size slide”. In the pop-up box, you are going to type 1235 x 795 and click “Ok”.

3. With your mouse, select the generic text that appears in the document and delete it. Now, in the top toolbar, click on the paintbrush icon (format). In the menu of the right select a new color or image for the background of your planner.

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4. Save this dot paper pattern on your computer. Go to the folder where you saved the dot paper, drag and drop it into the keynote app. If you are not a fan of dot paper, here is a big collection of paper patterns.

Dragging and dropping dot image into the keynote canvas

5. Select the dot paper > on the left side of the screen select the arrange option > rotate the image 90° and move it to the left side of the document.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

If the dot paper is too wide, right-click it and select “edit mask” to crop the sides of the paper.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

6. Now let’s give your paper some dimension. In the toolbar of the Keynote app, select format > style > add a border and a shadow to the paper to make it look more realistic. Play around with the settings until you like the way your paper looks.

Drop shadow tool in the keynote app

7. Before we start making the other pages of the planner, let’s create the back cover of the planner. On the left side of the screen, right-click on the small slide and select duplicate.

Click on the duplicated page, select the dot paper pattern, and move it to the left side of the document. Now we have the front and the back covers of your digital bullet journal!

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

B. How to create the pages of the planner

8. Now we are going to create the other pages of the planner.  On the top-left side of the toolbar, select the “+” sign (add slide) > select the blank option.

Change the background of the slide by choosing a color or image (just like in the previous steps). Drag and drop the dot paper pattern into the keynote app.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

9. Use the white dots on the corners of the paper to resize it. Use the options in the format tools to add a shadow and a border to the paper to make it more realistic.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

10. In the toolbar select “shape”  > choose the straight “line” shape and place it in the middle of the page (see image below). Use the format and style options in the toolbar to change the color of the lines to gray and add a shadow.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

Hyperlinks are clickable link when you add a link to a word and click on it, the planner automatically takes you to that specific link. I like to put the index at the bottom right or in a tab.

On this page, I put the word “index” at the bottom right (in the toolbar click “text” and type a word) > click on the text box and move it anywhere in the planner.

Right-click on the text box > select add link > slide> choose what page in the document you want that link to take you when you click on it. I want that link to take me to the first page of my planner.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

Duplicate this slide as many times as you want (right-click on the small slide of the left > select “duplicate”). You can re-arrange the slides by moving them up or down.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

11. I use the first page of the planner as the index. Use the text box option to type the number of pages that you want on your planner > right click on the numbers and select the add link option > select slide > choose where you want that number to take you when you click on it.

For example, I want the numbers 1 and 2 (picture below) to take me to pages 1 and 2 of my planner which is slide 3 in the keynote document.

Adding hyperlink to the numbers on the dot paper

D. How to Add tabs to the planner

12. Another popular way to create links around the planner is by placing tabs on the borders of the planner. In the toolbar select the rounded rectangle from the shape options and place it on the edges of the planner.

Right-click on the shape and choose the send-to-back option. To add a link to the shape, Right-click on the shape again and select the add link option > select slide > choose which slide you want that tab to point to when you click on it.

How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app
How to Make a Digital Planner with Hyperlinks in the Keynote app

E.How to Decorate the planner

Use the shape options in the toolbar to decorate your planner. Remember that you can use any shape to give your digital planner pockets, borders, etc.

Remember how we drag-and-drop the dot paper? Well, you can actually add any image to the planner! You can use my collection of FREE digital planner stickers to decorate your planner.

How to Decorate digital planner in the keynote app

I hope this tutorial to learn how to make a digital planner in Keynote was helpful. If you have questions please leave me a comment at the bottom of this blog post.

Now comes the fun part, decorating your planner! Check out this tutorial or watch the video below to learn how to decorate your planner in the GoodNotes app.


F. How to Export the Digital Planner:

When you finish making the digital planner save it as a PDF. In the toolbar of Keynote select file > export to > PDF > image quality best > save the pdf file to Dropbox or your favorite cloud folder.

GoodNotes app:

  • Go to the GoodNotes app > On the top left side of the screen click “+” > import > Dropbox or the cloud folder where you saved the planner > Click on the file you saved > import as a new document.

Note: To click on the hyperlinks, make sure you select the following tool (red square):

How to click on the hyperlinks in GoodNotes App

Notability app:

  • Go to the Notability app > On the top right of the screen select import (the icon with an arrow pointing down) > Dropbox or the cloud folder where you saved the planner > Click on the file you saved > choose new note > open.

G. NEED HELP?

I hope my tutorial to learn how to create a digital planner in the keynote was helpful and interesting! New to digital planning? Check out my digital planner tutorials.

If you are a Windows or Android user, I have a step-step-by-step tutorial on this blog post to learn how to create a digital planner in Powerpoint.

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