I have the way to make your online activities more productive, more organized, and even safer. That sounds like the beginning of a pitch for some sort of infomercial product, but I’m telling you, this is a fact! With just one piece of software, Google Chrome and profiles, you can make a good part of your life easier…and possibly more profitable. This is a big deal and best of all, of course, it is free. That’s right – FREE! Just like my favourite kind of meal. Whatever is free.
Now you might not want to read what I’m about to type next. Or you might just be extra happy about it. I don’t know. This does take a little work to do, but once it is done, it is done for good. That’s how you know that this is some hype about the next great thing – anything worth having does take a little work to get. Mind you, the least work, the better in my opinion.
Get Google Chrome
First, download and install the Google Chrome web browser. Let’s not have any quibbling about this browser is better than that browser. If you don’t like Chrome or don’t want to try it, that’s up to you. We have similar articles for doing similar things in Firefox and I’m sure it can probably be done in Internet Explorer 10.
Get a Google Account or Three
Second, get a Google account, if you don’t already have one. You do? I thought that was likely the case. Now, think about the roles that you fulfill in a week – average person, writer, IT professional, student, amateur chef, whatever those roles might be. Write those roles down.
Now think of the major projects that you have either on the go or upcoming. Write those roles down.
Take your two lists and compare them, condense them a bit. Maybe you like doing handyman stuff and you have a fairly large home renovation coming up. See how those could be combined under one role? Let’s try to get that list down to, say, 2 to 5 roles. Mine is only 3 roles right now, so that’s what I’m going to use as an example.
Head over to Google and make new accounts based on those roles. Let’s say you’ve got Work, Personal, and Writing. Use your current Google profile for your Personal account. Make the names of the other two accounts reflect what they are, so the accounts are easier to remember. Perhaps something like Your First Name + Initial of Last Name + . + Role Name. My Work account would then end up looking like firstname.lastname@example.org, if that account is available.
Once you have your new accounts created, open up your Chrome web browser. Click on the three stacked Twinkies in the top right corner. Now, click on Settings.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll see the Google Chrome Settings screen, just like below. Look for where it says Users. Click on Add new user.
At this point, you get this nifty screen. It will have a picture already selected and a name like ‘Fitzy’ or ‘Mia’. Choose the icon and name you want for this specific role. Then click on Create.
The following window will appear, asking you to sign into your Google Account. Go ahead and do that.
Voila! Now you have a second Google profile. Go ahead and do that for the rest of your roles. Once you have that done, use your Chrome browser in a specific role. Add or import the bookmarks that are most pertinent to that role. For example, as a writer for MakeUseOf.com, I don’t need links to any of my day-job related activities. So I don’t add those.
You can also pick and choose the Chrome Extensions that are necessary to your role. They’ll only be installed under the Google profile that you install them under. You might notice that I have the PicChimp extension installed under my MUO profile. That helps me edit screenshots when I’m not at my home computer.
This keeps my Bookmarks Bar and Extensions Area lean and clean. Now when I’m writing, I can find the information I want when I want it. I can set up folders unique to each task such as Story Research and Stock Images. There are also less distractions, like the Gmail Notifier I have set up on my Home profile.
Since I get paid for writing articles for MakeUseOf.com, having a dedicated web browser profile makes it easier, simpler, and quicker to research and write stories. That, in turn, makes me more productive and helps me make some more money.
With the ability to access my IT profile from almost any Internet-connected computer in the world, that makes me a more efficient worker when I’m on call. That keeps the users and my supervisor, who I call Sensei, happy which usually works out in my favour in the end.
Are you currently using Google Chrome Profiles? How do you use them to increase your productivity and organization? Got a bit of a different way of using profiles on Google Chrome? We’d love to talk about it with you, right here in the comments section.