Saturday, April 5, 2008

Favourite Writer Tools by Google

Writers love tools like pens and thesauruses and this writer loves online tools to help me. I'm a Googler. I love Google and many things about it. Here are a few Google tools you might or might not be using to help in your writing.

Google Alerts
I love this tool. Go to google.com/alerts and create alerts for your name and for other things you are interested in that are in Cyberspace. Google will e-mail you when something new comes up. This can help you see where you're being talked about, help you understand what is getting indexed under your name and see if someone is posting your article directory work. You can also use it to watch for information on any subject such as a writing project you are working on. One of my team members manages blogs for a client of mine about news in a particular niche so she gets alerts to deliver the news to her inbox. Great time saver! I am helping another client with SEO and am getting alerts on his website so I can see what's working well. It's a great tool for many purposes and very easy to use.

Google Calendar
You can use Google calendars to help you manage your time. Many uses for this tool can benefit you including booking appointments months out, managing deadlines and reminding yourself to touch base with old clients to see if new business is available and more.

More Advanced Google Searches
If you want to search other countries, you can do this. You can also search for news specifically as well. Learn to do boolean search, learn to search Google in different countries (such as Google.co.uk for UK searches, Google.co.uk/news for UK news searches) and use the tilde operator (Googlesearchterm~)to get synonyms and help yourself with Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI).

Google Page Creator
If you don't have a website yet (or even if you do) Google Pages are a great way to create an online resume. Google indexes them well and they're easy to put up and look professional. Here's my GooglePage. It still indexes ahead of my business website for my name even though my business website is doing well in the search engines.

Gmail / Google Mail
I read several e-mail address accounts from Gmail. This way I don't have to open up seven seperate e-mail accounts to keep track of e-mail. It's got unlimited storage so is a great way to back up my work. I don't have to delete anything and I can put labels on things before I archive them in order to find them quickly later on. Gmail is a great tool.

Google Docs
You can share documents and collaborate with others online with Google Docs. This can be helpful when working with clients or with teams in the writing business.

Web History
If you have a Google account you can track your web history. This means you can go back ages and pull up old research information and see where you've been. It'll log everything on your browser if you set it to do that so it's very helpful.

Google Reader
Google Reader lets you keep on top of industry news and all kinds of online subscriptions in one place. It's a great organizational tool.

Google Adsense
Google Adsense is accessible from your Google account to track earnings if you subscribe to Adsense. This is great for pro bloggers or those who dabble in internet marketing.

Google Talk
If your clients or colleagues are on Gmail as well, you can have an IM chat directly in your e-mail. It's not as robust as other instant messaging applications but it's helpful because it's in your e-mail and it archives all conversations so can be helpful, especially with clients.

Google Trends
This tool lets you run reports on internet search trends to help you with SEO or help you come up with article writing ideas.

I'm sure this isn't a complete list of writing tools by Google but these are a few that either help me or that have been recommended to me. Which Google tools are most helpful to you as a writer?

8 comments:

Bruno LoGreco said...

Thanks Dana!!
These are really helpful tools.

Debra said...

Way cool. I'm also a Google fan and I plan to check these tools out, especially Google Alerts and the Google Calendar. Thanks!

Cindy M said...

Great resources, Dana. Thanks! I knew about and use a few of them like Google alerts and trends but I had no idea you could view multiple email addresses through Gmail or about the Google calendar. These will help me big time!

Diana said...

The link to your Google page doesn't work :( Since you use Gmail, I wanted to mention the GreaseMonkey extensions. They allow you to create a great Gmail signature, including HTML and pic. I did that with mine and it looks great! Makes it easy to remind people of my book and website too.

Dana Prince said...

Thanks, Diana. I've fixed that link (taken out the 'www' which was the problem, thanks!) and I'll look into GreaseMonkey. Thanks for the tip!

Suzanne James said...

I recently found Google Page. It is a great lens for web promotion.

Dana Prince said...

Yes, my google page is ranking well. I'm going to start using them for affiliate marketing!

Dana Prince said...

A new great tool is Google Open Notebook as well. Check it out!