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Google Alerts helps UK online centres join the online conversation

Vicky from UK online centres recommends using Google Alerts to find out what others are saying about your organisation online, and to find out about what's happening that's relevant to you.

Why did you look for this tool in the first place? What did you need help with?
We knew that our organisation was getting mentions on news websites and other places but it was becoming too much work to manually search for these every day.

How did you find out about the tool?
I already had a Google email account and began looking into some of the other services they offered. When I came across Google Alerts it was perfect for our needs.

What is this tool for?
Google Alerts ‘listens’ to what’s being said across the internet and will send you an email with a web link if your chosen term appears anywhere. You can set which terms you want to receive alerts for.

What do you use it for?
I have alerts set up to listen for the name of our organisation, and also to keep on top of more general relevant terms - things that might be interesting to us, or online conversations we might want to get involved in.

Why has this tool been useful to you?
Sometimes your organisation will be mentioned somewhere online. Without Google Alerts we might never know that we’re being talked about, but once we receive that email alert we can go and join the conversation, wherever it may be.

What have been the benefits of using this tool to you?
It automates a job that could take up a lot of time and makes it far easier to keep an eye on what is being written about your organisation.

Is there any cost attached to using this tool?
No, it’s all free.

Are there any online tutorials available?
Google has its own help section with some helpful tips.

How long did it take you to set it up?
If you already have a Google email account then it take a few minutes to set up what alerts you want to get. Obviously the more alerts you want to set up the longer it will take.

Are there any limitations to using this tool?
Not that I’ve found!