Google Alerts: Your new best friend

Are you using Google Alerts to follow key business topics online? When I learned about Google Alerts from a client, Stefan Lindegaard, this research tool quickly became my favorite new way to keep abreast of what’s happening online regarding a topic or a client.

With Google Alerts, you select a term and then Google sends you an e-mail when new information using that term is posted to a Web site, a news site, a blog, or Google Groups. Alerts can also tell you when a video on your topic has been posted.

For example, I follow the topic “open innovation” for Stefan since that’s what he writes about for his blog and in the books we’ve been working on together. I also use Google Alerts to keep track of news about my clients; the alerts let me see when press releases I’ve posted online for clients have been posted to news sites.

You can use Google Alerts to monitor mentions of your company online, as well as to follow news about your competitors. And you can keep up to date with industry news or find out when new information has been posted about a business subject you’re trying to learn more about.

You can opt to receive a “comprehensive” alert, which will notify you if anything anywhere pops up on the Web about your topic. Or you can choose only to get alerts about news sites or blogs or videos. Also, you can pick how often you want to receive the e-mails–once a day, once a week or as it happens. Be aware that if you choose “as it happens,” you may be getting a slew of e-mails, depending in the volume of activity around your chosen topic.

Learn more about the details of Google Alerts here. Note: you do need to have a Google account to sign up for Google Alerts.


  1. Judy says:

    I forwarded this to 2 colleagues who might find it valuable in keeping up with a number of things we're involved in. Thanks.

  2. Jeanne Yocum says:

    Great! Google Alerts are definitely helpful. I couldn't believe I had not heard about them before my client told me about them…now I'm addicted!

Leave a Reply

The Self-Employment Survival Guide can help you succeed. Learn all about it here.

Self-Employment Survival Guide book cover