How To Set Up Google Alerts

Learn how to easily set up Google Alerts and receive email alerts from Google based on specific keywords you would like to track.

WordPressAs you read this, there are millions of data transactions taking place online. New information is constantly being published on news sites, websites, and social media networks, and some of that information is related to subjects you are interested in.

Is there a free, easy and simple way to find out what is going on in your industry or niche so that you are not wasting a huge amount of time doing research? Yes, there is. It’s called …

Google Alerts

You can monitor the web for new content with Google Alerts

(Google Alerts – free web monitoring service)

Google will send you free alerts whenever your keyword is mentioned online, so you can keep up to date on news, social media conversations, and blogs.

Google Alerts is not only only a great tool for managing your reputation online, but also for receiving information about people, brands, companies, and any subject you want to know about.

With Google Alerts, you subscribe to a keyword or topic and you’re done. Whenever Google’s robots crawl a new web page, blog post, news update, press release, a tweet, video, or any other indexable content related to that topic, it will automatically send you an email or RSS update.

How To Set Up A Google Alert In 3 Simple & Easy Steps

Basically, there are only three simple steps required to start using Google Alerts:

Step 1 – Log Into Your Google Account

If you haven’t got a Google account, create one. A Google account lets you access loads of free services with just one username and password. If you use Gmail, post videos to YouTube, run an Adwords campaign or have a GooglePlus page, then you should already have a Google account.

Use your Google Account to access great services like Google Alerts

(Log into your Google Account to set up your alerts)

Info

You can still set up Google Alerts without a Google Account, but this gives you fewer configuration options (e.g. you can’t receive Google Alerts via RSS, only email).

After logging into into your Google Account, access the Google Alerts tool here:

https://www.google.com/alerts

Step 2 – Set Up Your Alerts

Set up an alert for any topic, business, person or web address you want to receive updates about. This service lets you keep track of product brands, names of employees, investors, competitors, influencers, celebrities, etc. There is no limit to how many alerts you can set up.

Create as many alerts as you like with Google Alerts

(Google Alerts lets you create as many alerts as you like)

Step 3 – Configure Your Preferences

You can specify the keyword or keywords you want alerts sent for, how often alerts should be sent out (as it happens, once a day, once a week), sources (e.g. automatic, news, blogs, web, videos, discussions, etc.), language, region, how many (all results, only the best results), and how to receive alerts (via email or RSS feed) …

Google alert preferences

(Google Alerts – preferences)

To narrow where Google sources the information for your alerts, select the source from the drop-down menu …

Google alert sources

(Google alert sources)

You can also specify the delivery time of your alerts in your settings, and if you want to receive all alerts in a single email …

Google Alerts - settings

(Google alert settings)

You can change these settings anytime.

You should begin receiving alerts as specified in your preferences …

Receive alerts via email or RSS

(Receive alerts via email or RSS)

Note that at the bottom of your email notification, you are given various options, including:

  • See more results
  • Edit the alert
  • Unsubscribe (stop receiving the alert)
  • View all your alerts
  • Receive the alert as RSS feed

How To Set Up Google Alerts While Browsing Google News

You can easily set up Google Alerts while browsing the web. Here’s how:

Go to Google News and type in your search term …

Enter a search term in Google News

(Enter a search term in Google News)

Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on ‘Create Alert’ …

Google News - Create Alert

(Google News – Create Alert)

Type in your email address and click on the ‘Create Alert’ button …

Google Alerts screen

(Google Alerts screen)

If you elect to receive alerts via email, you will be asked to verify your Google Alert request …

Verify your Google Alert request

(Verify your Google Alert request)

After confirming your request, your Google Alert will be set up and you will begin to receive alert notifications via email.

Your Google Alert has been successfully verified

(Your Google Alert has been successfully verified)

You can return to the Google Alerts home page and create as many alerts as you want.

Deleting Google Alerts

You can delete any alerts you no longer want to receive …

Google Alerts - settings

(Google Alerts – settings)

You can also stop receiving alerts by clicking on the ‘Unsubscribe’ link at the bottom of your emails …

Click the Unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email

(Click the Unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email)

Confirm that you want to unsubscribe from your Google Alert …

Click unsubscribe to stop receiving Google Alerts

(Click unsubscribe to stop receiving Google Alerts)

Your Google Alert will be cancelled …

Google Alert cancelled

(Google Alert cancelled)

You will stop receiving alert emails on the topic after unsubscribing.

Tip

If you want Google to send our alerts via email, you can configure rules in your email program to automatically send all alerts to one or more email folders. This helps keep your alerts organized and easier to sort through.

If your alerts are sent out via RSS feed, you can use a feed reader to view the information on your smartphone or mobile device.

Once your alerts are set up, you can track information about topics, names, the competition, etc., or start creating content for your blog in your topic of choice.

How To Repost News Items From Google Alerts On Your WordPress Website

You can repost news items directly from Google Alerts on your WordPress your blog as blog posts or as a ‘widgetized’ item on your sidebar.

Let’s take a look at both methods:

Publish Google Alerts News Items As A Blog Post

To display news items from Google Alerts as a blog post, do the following:

Set up your site to post by email …

Post to WordPress by email

(Post to WordPress by email)

If you need help with this step, see this tutorial:

Next, create an Alert to send to the email address you have set up …

Create Alert and send to email

(Create Alert and send to email)

Alerts will now be posted to your site, or come in as ‘drafts’ that you can review and publish.

Publish Google Alerts News Items On Your Sidebar

To publish news items from Google Alerts as a as a ‘widgetized’ item on your sidebar, all you need to do is set up to receive your alerts as an RSS feed as described earlier …

Receive alerts as an RSS feed

(Receive alerts as an RSS feed)

Next, copy the RSS feed link to your clipboard …

Copy RSS link address

(Copy RSS link address)

And add the RSS feed to an RSS widget as described in this tutorial:

Your alert will display as a ‘widgetized’ item on your sidebar and the feed will update regularly as Google sources new items …

RSS Widget with Google Alert feed

(RSS Widget with Google Alert feed)

Hopefully, you have found this tutorial useful. If you would like to know more about integrating social media with WordPress, see this article: WordPress Tools - Social Media Measurement

Google Alerts - A Simple & Easy Tutorial

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"If you're new to WordPress, this can stand on its own as a training course and will stay with you as you progress from beginner to advanced and even guru status." - Bruce (Columbus, Ohio)

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Originally published as How To Set Up Google Alerts.