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 continually being published on blogs, news media, and social media networks, and some of that information is related to topics that interest you.

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a free, easy and simple way to find out what is happening in your industry or niche that would save you a massive amount of time doing research? Well, there is. It’s called …

Google Alerts

Google Alerts lets you monitor the web for new content

(You can monitor the web for new content with Google Alerts)

Google Alerts is a free, simple and useful tool for keeping up-to-date with the latest news about all kinds of topics, staying informed about people and companies, and monitoring what is being published about you and your business online.

Google Alerts is not only great for managing your reputation online, but also for gathering news about people, companies, and any topic you are interested in.

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

How To Set Up Google Alerts In 3 Simple Steps

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 Adwords or own a GooglePlus page, then you should already have a Google account set up.

Log into your Google Account to set up your 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 only receive email alerts, not alerts via RSS).

Once you have logged 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 name, person or website you would like to track. This service lets you track product brands, employees, investors, influencers, competitors, celebrities, etc. There are no limits to the number of alerts you can set up.

Create as many alerts as you like with Google Alerts

(Set up as many alerts as you like with Google Alerts)

Step 3 – Configure Your Preferences

Google Alerts lets you specify the keyword(s) you want alerts for, how often alerts should be sent (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)

To narrow the source of your alerts, select the source from the drop-down menu …

Google alert sources

(Google Alerts – sources)

You can also specify alert delivery times in your settings, and whether these should be sent as a single email …

Google alert settings

(Google Alerts – settings)

All of these settings can be changed at anytime.

You will begin receiving alerts as per your preferences …

Google alerts - email alert

(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 Searching On 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.

Deleting Google Alerts

You can stop receiving alerts by deleting them from your account …

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 from Google after unsubscribing.

Useful Tip

If you want to receive alerts sent to your inbox via email, you can configure rules in your email application to automatically redirect all alerts to one or more email folders. This will help to 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 access the information on your smartphone or mobile device.

Once your alerts are set up, you can track information about topics, businesses, competitors, etc., or create content in your chosen topic.

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

You can republish news items directly from Google Alerts on your WordPress your website 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, 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 site, or come in as ‘drafts’ that you can review and publish.

Publish Google Alerts News Items On Your Sidebar

To repost 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. To learn more about integrating social media with WordPress, see this article: Social Media Measurement Tools For WordPress

Setting Up A Google Alert - A Step-By-Step Guide

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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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