How to create and use Chrome profiles

Creating and using different profiles in your browser is a great way to keep your work and personal accounts separate. All the Chrome features you love such as remembering passwords, keeping you logged into your browser based applications, and remembering your start up pages can be personalized to individual profiles. 

Example uses for multiple Chrome profiles

One of the most common ways users utilize Chrome profiles is to create a work profile and a personal profile. The work profile can be tailored to your needs in whatever way is most efficient. Perhaps you frequently access your company social media accounts and don’t want to risk confusing these with your personal accounts. You may want to maintain separation from your work Gmail and Google drive account and your personal account.

Another use is to maintain profiles for different users. With the increase in remote work, this can be necessary for shared computers. While some find it more manage to create profiles at the computer level, if there is an occasional user, for example a child needing access to a school portal, a separate profile can be a huge benefit. Besides the above stated account separation, you can set limits and parental controls. Your search histories will remain separate which can be face saving for all involved. You can also make the school portal or the most important browser based application open immediately when Chrome is opened.

How to create Chrome profiles in Windows

Adding a new profile can be done in a few short steps. In the upper right-hand corner of Chrome, in the same bar as your address bar, is a circle indicating your active Chrome profile. This may be your chosen profile picture, your initials or a label you created for your profile. Click on this icon to view the accounts menu.

At the bottom of this menu, click on + add. This will open a new browser window that says “set up your new Chrome profile”. You may choose to sign in with a Google account or set up a new profile without associating an account. Having a Google account synced will assist with other integrations and conveniences, but it is not strictly necessary.

On the next page, add a name or label to identify this profile. Choose a color that can easily distinguish this profile from your others. Keeping the box checked to create a desktop shortcut adds convenient access. When you are all set, click done.

Despite the button you just pressed you are not quite done yet. To get the most out of your Chrome profile, we recommend adjusting your preferences, such as setting start up pages, managing your security preferences, and editing the appearance to best suit your needs. If you already have an account, such as a Chrome profile in a different computer, you can import the settings and bookmarks instead of setting up from scratch. These can all be found in the account setting by clicking the same icon in the upper right mentioned earlier. 

Switching between Chrome profiles

Now that you have multiple profiles, you’ll want to know how to easily toggle between them. If you already have Chrome open, you can switch to another profile by clicking your profile icon in the upper right. The menu will list your available profiles that you can simply click to open.

Conveniently, this does not close out your original profile, but instead opens the a new instance of Chrome. These are easily differentiated in your taskbar using your profile image, and can easily be toggled between by clicking on either one or using the keyboard shortcut alt+tab.

Does this apply anywhere else?

You can set up browser profiles in most browsers available. However the exact steps will vary. Alternatively, if you really just need a blank profile temporarily, why not try incognito mode? Lastly, if all you need is access to multiple Google accounts, not Chrome profiles, you can easily switch between accounts within the same profile. As always, check out our knowledgebase for more helpful tips and useful how-tos.

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