How to Use Google to Find New Clients

The world is a big place and there are clients out there, who would benefit from your work, if only you were connected to them. You are using Google Search all the time to find what you’re looking for, in this case clients for your freelance translation service, so why not use one of the other powerful tools from Google to help you on this quest? I’m talking about Google Alerts.

Google Alerts

It turns out that Google Alerts is very useful when you need an overview of the translation industry with respect to your specific language pair. And, it actually works well with the detailed day-to-day information too.

If you go to and log in using your general Google account, and then type in a search called “google alerts”, you’ll find the Google Alerts tool. Here you can create a new alert for digging up translation work. These are the two alerts I’ve used in order to connect with the right people in the industry:

“[source language] – [target language]”
“[source language] to [target language]”

with [source language] replaced by english, and [target language] replaced by danish. I have put in the quotation marks too, to get exactly what I’m looking for.

This will send an email alert to you whenever Google finds new or updated webpages, that are related to your language pair, so you’ll be directed to job boards, agencies, job posts, blog posts etc., where you’ll find people who need your services.


I found one little twist with this method though: When someone is in the process of building an online dictionary, the great Google machine is running around on this new site and generating a lot alerts, as new words are added. This will spam your inbox, because this doesn’t mean more work for you, but there’s a way around this. By using a minus sign after your alert text, you can filter these extra alerts off:

“[source language] – [target language]” -[dictionary]
“[source language] to [target language]” -[dictionary]

In my case I had to replace [dictionary] with dinordbok, to make use of Alerts without getting spammed by the tool. (No hard feelings DinOrdbok, I love you guys 😉 See, here’s some link love for you!: )

Feels Like Home

There’s an exponential curve embedded in this process, because in the beginning there are lots of new pages popping up, with new places to explore – you don’t even know what’s out there, that you don’t know about. But after a while you’ll begin to recognize the main players in the industry, although the day-to-day job offerings will change in form. Those who are big enough will actually have their own alert systems, that you can plug into, but Google Alerts is a great way to kick it all off.

6 comments on “How to Use Google to Find New Clients

  1. -

    Wow, Nice post Very informative. I was unaware of Google alerts prior to reading this post. One thing however I would like to see a More in depth review of google alerts and what it can do for any market. Thank for the Post Thomas.

  2. -

    Thanks for the post Thomas! I too was unaware of Google Alerts and will now have to go do more research about it!

  3. -

    Google Alerts is a great tool. Another way to use it in an unrelated way is to setup an alert for your name and last name combination. As long as your name is pretty unique, this will trigger an alert anytime someone writes something about you on the Internet. This way if it’s a positive comment or someone links to your site etc. you can find out who mentioned you where, reach out and thank them and build connections.

  4. -

    I’m constantly forgetting how useful Google Alerts can be. Thanks for the reminder and for this informative post!

  5. -

    This is awesome Thomas, thanks for sharing! Great post on what Google Alerts is and how to use it effectively. I had no idea this was even available. Great way for having the information find you!

  6. -

    Thanks Thomas, I didn’t realize you could do the -minus sign with Google Alerts. That’s going to help me tons… I have been getting lots of alerts I don’t want, but was afraid to turn off alerts in case I missed something. This is good to know, appreciate it.

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