Google Alerts is a simple and free tool used to monitor anything on the Web; from blogs, news articles, and various other media. It sends you an email every time it finds new results, dependent on your settings. The scope of Google Alerts is only limited by your imagination, so think creatively, and if you are not already, start taking full advantage of it!
Here are a few ways you can use Google Alerts to influence your brand, site traffic, and sales.
Monitoring your Brand
You can set up various alerts to notify you of activities relating to your brand online. You could monitor where your brand has been mentioned in online discussions, or where these mentions have not resulted in a link back to your website. In the case of the latter, you can set up email alerts to notify you automatically every time this happens. This opens up opportunities for your business to ensure that you are getting links where they are due, and the ability to address any feedback you may find in online discussions.
Monitoring your Competitors
Just as you can monitor your own brand, it’s also extremely useful to monitor your competition. Keep a close eye on their online activity, positive/negative feedback, news, or new links, as all of this is useful information which you can use to your advantage. In particular, consider using this information to find link building opportunities, and to see which of your competitors’ online marketing strategies have been successful.
Monitoring Online Shoppers
If you are an eCommerce business, you can use Google Alerts to target shoppers in your niche. By using various search queries you can set up Google Alerts so that you get an email every time a shopper is ready to buy online, but hasn’t yet made that step. For example, you could seek to monitor potential customers in online discussions comparing the best prices, or the cheapest products. This way you can directly target potential customers.
Finding Guest Blogging Opportunities
You can use Google Alerts to monitor blogs in your niche which have guest posting opportunities. Most of these blogs have a page stating how to submit a post. So by using various common footprints, for example, “submit a post” * or “write for us” * you can monitor blogs for new guest blogging opportunities.
Go ahead and try it out!