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Buttons, Buttons, Get & Make Your Google Toolbar Buttons

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Google Releases Upgraded Toolbar from us earlier covered how the new Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer allows for custom search buttons, which can benefit both site owners and searchers. I wanted to highlight a few new resources since then plus some tips on making your own..

  • Jim Boykin spots some cool Google Toolbar buttons that Aaron Wall has posted. There are a variety to give you link popularity stats, with some complex stuff to remove forum links that might be discounted. I especially like the domain age, competitive analysis, blog analysis and some handy tools.
  • The Google Toolbar Button Gallery has a growing number of buttons in various categories, ready for use. The tools category has some especially shiny stuff, like being able to visit a site anonymously.
  • Want our button? Click here to get it. Our button lets you search everything on the Search Engine Watch Blog and get the last 15 items posted, refreshed every 15 minutes.
  • Niall Kennedy's Google Toolbar search button template is an easy way for those using Movable Type blogs to get their own buttons with blog feed updates embedded in them.

    Niall's code uses a generic icon by default. If you want to use your own, such as a favicon you already have, Niall points to this site. Browse to a local copy of your favicon, then the site will generate new code for it, then replace everything between and with your new code. Worked easy for me.

    By default, your feed will update every 3600 seconds (that's one hour). Want it to update faster? Change the feed refresh-interval value to whatever number seconds you prefer.
  • Getting Started with the Google Toolbar API is an overview of how you can click and make your own buttons for any site, useful for searchers and webmasters alike. Webmasters will want to dive into the full documentation for further instructions.

The full documentation is a bit much, but the overview that Google provides don't go far enough. So I'll try to bridge the gap with some additional, easy steps to take. Let's dive in.

  1. Right-click within the search box on your own web site. You'll see an option to generate a custom search button.
  2. After the button has been added, click Settings, then Options. A new window will appear. Select the Buttons tab in it.
  3. Select the button you added, then choose Edit. If all you want to do is change the name of the button, do that in the Button Name box, save and skip to finding the file, Step 8.
  4. Want to edit the description and add a feed? From the Edit window, select the Use Advanced Editor Link (if you get a 404 error, try again. That worked for me).
  5. Within the Advanced Editor window, find the section and change the description between these tags to whatever you want.
  6. Want to add your feed? Add this:

    YOURFEEDURL

    Replace the words YOURFEEDURL with the URL of your feed. As explained earlier, the 3600 value means the feed will be updated every 3600 seconds, or one hour. Change that value to a faster speed, if you prefer.

  7. Push the Save to Google Toolbar button.
  8. Now find the toolbar file on your computer as explained here.
  9. Make a copy with whatever short name you'd prefer, then upload that to your web server.
  10. Now link to your file like this:

    http://toolbar.google.com/buttons/add?url=YOURFILENAME

    For example, here's how it looks for the Search Engine Watch Blog

    http://toolbar.google.com/buttons/add?url=http://blog.searchenginewatch.com/blog/gtoolbar.xml

  11. Load the button yourself and ensure it works.
  12. Now go submit your button to the Google Toolbar Button Gallery and hope for the best!


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