I’m a huge fan of Google Alerts — I use it on a regular basis to keep track of various topics and I’ve found it to be immensely helpful for research projects. That being said, the one complaint I’ve always had is that you can’t schedule when you want to receive the alerts. The way the system is setup, if you create your alert at 9 pm, you’ll typically get your daily alerts around 9 pm. That’s a problem when you have a bunch of alerts setup and you would ideally want them to arrive in the morning — to fix the issue, you have to delete and recreate the alerts — which is definitely annoying. So back in 2012, I decided to quickly spin up a website, FixGoogleAlerts.com encouraging Google to invest a little time (and money) into fixing that issue. I’ve been about a year and a half, and even though I heard that a few of the engineers working on the project got a good chuckle out of the website, end users are still waiting on the fix. My guess is that Google Alerts is just another one of the products that Google isn’t interested in investing additional money into, but I feel like it’s one of their better products that just needs a little TLC.
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- By Zach Edwards