Google Alerts are simply automated messages sent to your Gmail account whenever Google indexes web content that included your selected keywords or keyword phrases. This is a free tool provided by Google. You can choose to include several keywords to narrow down the search alerts or even put your keywords in “quotes” to even further narrow down the relevancy.
Google Alerts is very easy to setup but you do have a few options such as how often to receive the alerts. Common keywords will generate an endless stream of alerts so I normally chose the ‘daily‘ option. Another option Google gives you involves the volume of the alerts by selecting “All results” or “Only the best results“. You can set the type of content you want to be alerted of by Everything, News, Blogs, Video, and Discussions.
Here are a few ideas on how to put Google Alerts to work for you as a blogger:
- Keep up with your niche.
- Track your competition.
- Stay on top of news and development in your field.
- Discover new content and topics.
- Track your brand and name.
- Find new and upcoming keywords.
- Find scrapers stealing your content.
- See how quickly your content is being indexed by Google.
- Discover relevant blogs and websites.
- Build your network within your niche.
- Find new social and bookmarking sites.
- Be the first to know when your keywords are in the news.
- Find new places to add backlinks for SEO.
- Determine which keywords are saturated with competition.
- Find backlinks to your site from content and article marketing.
There you have it; Google Alerts are a fantastic free tool for bloggers. The options available help reduce the volume of alerts you receive. You can always go in and adjust the settings, add new alerts, or delete old ones in a matter of seconds. Google Alerts should be on every website admin’s list of free tools.
You? Do you use Google Alerts? Do you find them useful? Are there any benefits I missed? I’d love to hear you comments and opinions.
Related Post: Track Your Blog’s Niche With Google Alerts