As a freelancer, and somebody who runs a few websites, I regularly log in and out of different online accounts.
Pinterest. Twitter. Facebook. LinkedIn. Websites. AdWords. AdSense. The list goes on and on.
All this logging in and out is a real time-suck and let’s be honest, a pain in the ass.
I’ve just discovered a better way to manage multiple Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook and other online accounts and today I’m going to share it with you. And it’s so simple to set up too.
All you need is the Chrome browser (download it here if you’re not already using it) and a laptop. As far as I can tell, this doesn’t work on the mobile version of Chrome (at least that’s the case for me).
Setting up multiple profiles in Chrome
What we’re going to do is setup multiple personas/profiles in the Chrome browser.
Chrome has this useful feature that lets you create multiple profiles, enabling you to open the browser several times, each as a different persona, and each with it’s own set of bookmarks in the bookmarks bar and extensions.
For example, my default profile is the one I use for everything related to running my business. When I open this profile, Chrome automatically opens up this website, Twitter and LinkedIn in different tabs (notice I don’t open Facebook? I save the ultimate distraction for a personal profile).
I have other profiles for clients and projects and each one of those opens up the tabs I need to manage those accounts, and each one of them has its own set of bookmarks.
I’m sure you can see how useful this is if you manage multiple online accounts and don’t want to keep logging in and out of them all day long.
Here’s the step-by-step process for creating multiple accounts on Chrome.
Look for the three little dots in the top right hand corner of Chrome. Click them and choose Settings from the drop down menu.
Scroll down to the People section and click Add Person.
Now it’s time to create the user:
- Choose an avatar and click on it.
- Change Person 1 to a name that means something to you such as the name of your website or your client’s name.
- Untick the box next to “Create a desktop shortcut for this user” if you don’t want to create a shortcut on your desktop.
- If you want to control the websites this person visits (handy if you’re doing this for your kids), tick the box. I’ve never done this as I’ve no desire to control the sites I’m visiting this way. The grey block covers my email address. When you do this, you’ll see the email address associated with your Google account.
- Once you’ve completed each section, click on Add so Chrome can create a brand new persona for you.
What you’ll see next is a bare-bones version of Chrome. There won’t be any bookmarks, extensions or history. Essentially, you’re starting again as the profile you’ve just created.
What you should notice is the name of the new profile in the top right corner. In this example, it’s Stephen 2.
Now, log into the accounts you want to use (Pinterest, Twitter etc). Save your passwords as you go. You might also want to set up the browser so the important sites open when the browser starts (saving even more time and increasing your productivity levels). To do that, go to Settings again (see Step 1) and click on the Set Pages link in the On startup section.
Add the sites you want, or open all the sites in different tabs and click on Use current pages. A word to the wise on this – typically, the more you add, the longer they take to open. When you’re done, click on OK and take it for a test run.
To switch between the profiles, right click on the profile name and choose the one you want to switch to.
I know it’s a bit of a pain setting this up, but it’s worth it if you find yourself switching between multiple accounts every day.
What do you think? Do you already use this or a similar method to handle multiple accounts? If you don’t, can you see yourself using it? I’d love to hear your thoughts. There’s plenty of space in the comments section.