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.

WordPressAt any given point in time, there are billions of interactions taking place online. New content is constantly being published on websites, news media, and social media streams, and some of that information is related to subjects you are interested in.

Is there a free 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, and it’s called …

Google Alerts

You can monitor the web for new content with Google Alerts

(Google Alerts – free web monitoring service)

Google Alerts is a tool that delivers Google search queries to your inbox or via RSS feed.

Google Alerts is not only useful for managing your reputation online, but also for receiving information about people, companies, and any other subject you are interested in.

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

How To Create A Google Alert

Let’s go over the 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. Google lets you access loads of free services with just one username and password. If you use Gmail, post videos to YouTube, run a pay-per-click advertising campaign with Adwords or have a GooglePlus page, then you should already have a Google account.

Log into your Google Account

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

Useful Information

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

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

https://www.google.com/alerts

Step 2 – Set Up An Alert

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

Set up as many alerts as you like with Google Alerts

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

Step 3 – Set Your Preferences

Google Alerts lets you specify the keyword(s) you want alerts 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 Alerts - preferences

(Google Alerts – preferences)

If you want to narrow where Google sources the information for your alerts, just select an option from the drop-down menu …

Google Alerts - sources

(Google alert sources)

You can also specify the delivery time of your alerts in your settings, and whether these should be sent as a single email …

Google Alerts - settings

(Google alert settings)

You can change these settings at anytime.

You should begin receiving alerts as per your preferences …

Receive alerts via email or RSS

(Google alerts – email alert)

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)

Enter your email address and click on ‘Create Alert’ …

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.

How To Delete 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 no longer receive alert emails on the topic after unsubscribing.

Tip

If you would like alerts to be sent via email to your inbox, 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 track and sort through.

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

Once you have set up alerts, you can track information about keywords, names, competitors, etc., or create content for your blog in your chosen topic.

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

You can display news items directly from Google Alerts on your WordPress your site 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 repost 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, set up your Google 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 blog, or come in as ‘drafts’ that you can review and publish.

Publish Google Alerts News Items On Your Sidebar

To republish 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 helpful. If you would like to know more about integrating social media with WordPress, see this article: Social Media Measurement Tools For WordPress Users

How To Create A Google Alert

***

"I was absolutely amazed at the scope and breadth of these tutorials! The most in-depth training I have ever received on any subject!" - Myke O'Neill, DailyGreenPost.com

***

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Using S2 MemberUsing S2 Member

Learn how to set up and configure a WordPress membership site using the S2 Member free WordPress membership plugin.

More info: Using S2 Member

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

QR Code MarketingQR Code Marketing

Learn about the benefits of using QR codes in your mobile marketing and useful QR code marketing tactics you can implement to better promote your business.

More info: QR Code Marketing

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Add A WordPress Site To FacebookHow To Add A WordPress Site To Facebook

Learn how to add your WordPress site to Facebook. Learn how to obtain and set up a free SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate for your WordPress site, how to change your site protocol from "http" to "https" (secure site) and how to set up a Facebook app and import your entire WordPress site into Facebook.

More info: How To Add A WordPress Site To Facebook

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Build An e-Commerce Store With WordPressBuild An e-Commerce Store With WordPress

Learn how to set up an e-commerce store on your WordPress site using e-commerce platforms like WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads.

More info: Build An e-Commerce Store With WordPress

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

WordPress SEOWordPress SEO

In this WordPress SEO training series you will learn how to optimize your WordPress site and how to craft website pages and blog posts that will help you get better search engine rankings and improve your traffic results.

More info: WordPress SEO

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Keyword Research ToolsKeyword Research Tools

This video course shows you how to do keyword research using tools like the Google Keyword Planner.

More info: Keyword Research Tools

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Google ToolsGoogle Tools

This video course will help you learn the basics of using Google Tools like Google Analytics and Gmail.

More info: Google Tools

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

WordPress Traffic & User EngagementWordPress Traffic & User Engagement

Learn how to drive more targeted traffic to your website and discover ways to improve user engagement with your business online.

More info: WordPress Traffic & User Engagement

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Use AweberHow To Use Aweber

This video course shows you how to use Aweber to set up autoresponders, newsletters and opt-in subscriber forms that can be integrated with WordPress for lead generation, user engagement, and client training.

More info: How To Use Aweber

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Sell Online With PayPalSell Online With PayPal

This video course shows you how to set up PayPal on your website to receive payments online, with additional tips on using PayPal payment tools.

More info: Sell Online With PayPal

Author: Martin Aranovitch

Martin Aranovitch is the founder of WPCompendium.org and the author of The Small Business Digital Manager. WPCompendium.org provides hundreds of FREE tutorials that show you how to use WordPress to grow your business online with no coding skills required! Get our FREE "101+ WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies" e-course with loads of useful WordPress tips!

Originally published as How To Set Up Google Alerts.