Endnote vs Mendeley

🔥 published May 17, 2024 - updated May 17, 2024

Quick Overview

We compared EndNote and Mendeley, two popular reference management applications, to discover which one is a better choice for identifying high-quality, relevant sources for academic research. EndNote is a professional-grade application developed for large research projects with a high learning curve. Mendeley, on the other hand, is a more flexible, free application that appeals to a wide range of users due to its simple interface and extensive source library.

Liked about Endnote
  • Has many sophisticated features
  • Fetches full-text open-source articles
  • Integrates with word processors like MS Word and Google Docs
Liked about Mendeley
  • Free and powerful
  • Supports filtering through sources
  • Has its own reference manager
TOP services Our verdict AHelp Score 🔥 Updated March 2024
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AHELP Reference Finder
Best reference finder 96/100 Get free access
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Best result relevance 95/100 Read review
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Semantic Scholar
Best free service 93/100 Read review
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Most convenient on mobile devices 90/100 Read review
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Best search filters 88/100 Read review
Best fit forResearchers involved in extensive projectsStudents and researchers on a budget
A*Help Score⭐⭐⭐
Search Quality⭐⭐⭐
High learning curve, extensive functionality
Comprehensive, good filtering options
Overall Experience⭐⭐⭐
Complex setup but professional interface
User-friendly, simple interface
Value for Money⭐⭐⭐
High cost, no free plan
Excellent, as the service is free to use

Searching Quality: Endnote vs Mendeley

EndNote scored 39/50 for search quality. It is a powerful library tool, perfect for users with a clear idea of the references they need. You’ll definitely enjoy interacting with this platform if you know exactly what source you’re looking for. For this, you should need the paper’s author, title, ISBN, or ISSN to find it immediately. In this case, the service will get it on your screen, and from there, you have all possible functionalities. But if a user is in their earlier stages of research, this search engine may be hard to figure out, and searching can become tedious and frustrating. Otherwise, EndNote’s extensive search criteria and integration with various databases make it highly effective for retrieving specific sources, especially if you know which database or library catalog contains your source. For those looking to explore broadly related materials it may be challenging due to the lack of keyword search in some libraries. 

A screenshot of search results at Endnote
Search results at Endnote (click to see a large image)
Screenshot of the main page at Mendeley (click to see a large image)
Search engine at Mendeley (click to see a large image)

Mendeley scored higher at 44/50, and it’s also a rather complete framework for serious research. Users may look through a range of sources, including journals, books, and conference papers, looking for the best references for their academic writing projects. However, it falls short in allowing users to pick certain research kinds or disciplines, which we believe might be a barrier for students seeking highly specific information. The platform maintains its information to keep it relevant, but citation formatting is only possible if you install the Mendeley Cite plugin, which is only available on PCs. We also noticed some problems with access to PDF documents. They appeared to be available, but we were unable to open some of them because of a problem on the website. This might have been caused by temporary technical troubles and isn’t the norm for Mendeley. 

Sources searched ENDNOTE MENDELEY
Climate change effects on Polar bears
– shows relevant results
– features highly-cited sources n/a
Newest data on Mars rover findings
– shows relevant results
– features highly-cited sources n/a

Comparing Value for Money: Endnote vs Mendeley

EndNote’s pricing structure includes a Full License at $275, an Upgrade License at $125, and a Student License at $150. Despite the high initial cost, these one-time purchases offer long-term benefits for users involved in complex research projects. The 30-day free trial provides an opportunity to explore EndNote’s features but requires entering billing information, which can be inconvenient. Also, the lack of a free version most likely will be a barrier for casual users. Overall, the high cost and lack of free features result in a low cost-benefit ratio.

Mendeley offers excellent value for money, being entirely free to use. It provides a free reference manager and a free add-on for MS Word for citation management. This makes it an attractive option for students and researchers with tight budgets. The free features are robust, covering most needs for academic research, and the cost-benefit ratio is high, as users get substantial functionality without spending any money.

A screenshot of libraries at Endnote
Available libraries at Endnote (click to see a large image)
Screenshot of search results at Mendeley.com (click to see a large image)
Search results at Mendeley (click to see a large image)

Comparing Overall Experience: Endnote vs Mendeley

EndNote requires a significant initial setup, including downloading, installing, and registering the desktop application. The trial period necessitates entering billing information, which might discourage some users. We aren’t beginners in the world of educational tools, but even for us, the interface seemed a little complicated at first. This should not be considered as a drawback but rather as a peculiar feature of Endnote’s professional approach. The ability to save and organize references in personal libraries or smart groups is highly useful, and integration with word processors like MS Word and Google Docs will improve productivity. However, the search functionality can be tedious unless users know specific details about their references. EndNote’s performance is reliable, but the lack of an AI assistant and limited customer support options are notable drawbacks.

An image showing reference summary at Endnote
Reference summary at Endnote (click to see a large image)
Screenshot of the personal library at Mendeley
Personal library at Mendeley (click to see a large image)

Mendeley boasts a simpler and more user-friendly experience. Quick registration and an intuitive interface make it easy to start. It supports all important features like saving papers to a personal library, tagging them, and integrating with the Mendeley reference manager. The platform is accessible on mobile and desktop apps, adding flexibility for users. Despite its simplicity, Mendeley lacks a sharing feature and an AI assistant, which might limit its appeal. Customer support is available through chat and guides, which should be enough for the majority of students. Overall, Mendeley provides a smooth and efficient user experience, particularly for inexperienced users of reference management tools.

The Verdict

EndNote and Mendeley are both quite functional and more or less universal tools for academic research. EndNote’s professional-grade features and extensive functionality make it appropriate for serious researchers, even despite its high cost and complex setup. Mendeley’s free access, user-friendly interface, and comprehensive features make it ideal for students and researchers on a budget. Ultimately, the choice between these tools depends on individual needs and preferences, with EndNote being better for extensive projects and Mendeley offering excellent value for money.

Main Specs: Endnote vs Mendeley

> Quality and Variety of SourcesEndnoteMendeley
> Comprehensiveness (study types, domains)
access to full texts or abstracts
Relevance (Up-to-Date Information)
> Citation Formatting
MLAavailable with the add-on
APAavailable with the add-on
Chicagoavailable with the add-on
Harvardavailable with the add-on
Other stylesavailable with the add-on
> Subscription Cost / pricing
FFree trial period: 30 days

Upgrade License – If you have EndNote 20 (or earlier), upgrade to EndNote 21 today. – $125 (one-time purchase)

Full License – If you’re buying EndNote for the first time, this option is for you – $275

Student License – Verify your EndNote student discount eligibility to receive EndNote at this discounted price. – $150
> User experience
Integration with Reference Management Tools
search functionality and filtering options
AI assistant
> Support
live chat
help center

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