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Our commentary: I think many marketers are signed up for Google Alerts and use it for the obvious, but useful. I usually recommend setting up alerts so that you're emailed when the following are included on a newly published page and first indexed by Google:
If you want to exclude your own site or any other site you can use the -site:www.yoursite.com syntax
It's also worth remembering you can use negative's for example I use -books,-book since lots of retailers have pages featuring my books but I don't want to be alerted about those.
Here's an example of an alert I set up a while ago on my old site:
+"dave chaffey" -books -book -pdf -download -site:davechaffey.com
I was prompted to share this by an interesting new post on SEOptimise this week by Kelvin Newman which used Google Alerts with the Advanced Google syntax link: and site:.
Marketing implications: The suggestions in the post below which I felt are most useful are:
1. New links to your site or competitor sites using the Google "link:www.site.com" syntax (which as Kelvin points out is flawed, but it will show more significant links)
2. Newly indexed pages on your site using the "site:www.site.com" syntax - this may alert you to indexing problems if new pages aren't considered.
3. Alerts on competitor/customer/partner sites, again using the "site:www.site.com/subfolder" syntax - Kelvin suggests a press centre for example where you don't want to / can't track through an RSS feed.
Recommended link: Using Google Alerts for SEO and PR
How do you use Google Alerts? I'd be interested to hear your tricks.
Of course if you want to get serious and filter the mentions that matter, you'd need to check out the huge array of Brand monitoring software available today.
By Dave Chaffey
Dave is CEO and co-founder of Smart Insights. He is editor of the 100 templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ Digital Marketing experts. Our resources used by our Expert members in more than 80 countries to Map, Plan and Manage their digital marketing. For my full profile, or to connect on LinkedIn or other social networks, see the About Dave Chaffey profile page on Smart Insights. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Emarketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.
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