Keep Tabs on Your Searches with Google Alerts

Receive alerts in your email Inbox or RSS reader when something you’re after makes its way into the Google Web index or a Google News story.

There are two classes of search that one generally runs in Google. One is of the sort that you generally run just the once: you’re trying to find information on some topic, a phone number, or that URL you visited yesterday but have since forgotten.

Then there’s the search that you’d run every day if you could. You’re interested in a particular subject matter and want to know the moment Google finds and indexes something new on the topic.

There are a couple of services available that’ll do the trick: the official Google Alerts notifies you of any new web pages or news stories matching your search criteria, while the third-party service GoogleAlert watches only for new web pages but sports a few extra features and delivery options not found in Google’s version.

Tip

Google’s Web index does not consider a page “new” based on the date it was created. Instead, it considers a page new based on the date that it was found and indexed by the Googlebot. For more detail on the difference, see “daterange:” under the “Special Syntax” section in Chapter 1.

Google Alerts

Google Alerts (http://www.google.com/alerts), Google’s official alert offering, allows you to monitor both Google’s Web index and Google News stories. To set up a Google Alert, visit the Google Alerts page. In the Create a Google Alert form (shown in ...

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