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How to set up Google Alerts

Tell Google what you're looking for and it'll find it.

Published onAugust 14, 2023

Google Alerts is a two-decade-old service that allows users to keep up with the latest topics on the internet. Alerts is an extremely useful tool, whether you’re using it to look for new recipes, to keep up with a particular sports team, or for general interest purposes. But how do you set up Google Alerts? Here’s everything you need to know.


Google Alerts makes it easier to keep up to date with news or a subject on the web. When new content relating to a user-defined topic is published online, Google will alert the user via email.


What are Google Alerts, and how do they work?

Google Alerts is one of the stalwart Google features. Launched in 2003, the service allows users to “monitor the web for interesting new content,” as Google describes. But it’s not just for interesting content; you can use Alerts to keep up with practically anything.

All users need to create an alert is a search topic or term and their email address. Alerts will then crawl the web, recognize new content, and email users when a new news article, webpage, image, or video is posted online. Google Alerts can filter these results based on language, source, or region. You can even let Google pick the best results for your purpose. We’ll get into how to create a Google Alert below.

How to create Google Alerts

  1. Visit the Google Alerts web page.
  2. Type a search term or topic into the search box. The Alert preview should automatically populate with results.
  3. Next, click Show options.
    • You can fine-tune your results by adjusting How often you receive alerts, the Sources, the Language of the results, the Region the results originate from, and How many results you receive.
  4. Enter your email address in the Enter email field.
  5. Click Create Alert.

You can create multiple alerts covering the same, similar, or completely different topics. You don’t need to set up a Google account or use a Gmail address when signing up for Alerts.

How to edit or turn off your Google Alerts

  1. Visit the Google Alerts web page, or click the Edit this alert option on an Alerts email you received.
  2. Find the alert you want to edit, and click the pencil icon next to the alert.
  3. Next, make the changes you want.
  4. Click Update alert when you’re done.

To delete an alert, click the trash can next to the pencil icon on an alert.


No, Google Alerts can’t track private profiles, only open data that’s available on the web, so its use for monitoring social media is limited.

Yes, Google Alerts is free. You can set up as many alerts as you can keep up with.

Google will automatically send Alerts to the email address you used. To edit a specific alert, tap the Edit this alert option from one of the emails you received.

Yes, you don’t need a Gmail address to set up a Google Alert.

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