Twitter Account Settings: 7 Key Tabs

After you have set up your basic Twitter account by selecting your username and filled out all the main fields in the general Twitter settings area of your account, it's time to fill out the other tabs under your Twitter settings.

In addition to general Twitter settings, there are at least seven other tabs/pages that control your Twitter account settings. The key ones are password, mobile, email notifications, profile, design, apps, and widgets.

Profile is possibly the most important, but let's start at the top of the Twitter "Settings" page and work our way down through all seven areas of settings. You can access your Settings page through the pull-down menu under the gear icon at the very top of all your pages on Twitter.com.

When you click "Settings" from the gear menu, by default you land on the page for your "General" settings which govern your user name, password, time zone and so forth. Click each of the category names on the left side of your settings page to change the settings options that appear on the right.

Key Settings Areas

  1. Password

    The next tab beside the general "Account" one is labeled "Password."

    This simple form allows you to change your password. First enter your old one, then type in the new one twice.

    To secure your account, choose a password that has at least one capital letter and one number. Aim for a password with more than six letters, too. Twitter requires a minimum of six letters

    Click the "CHANGE" button when you are done.

  1. Mobile

    This page lets you provide Twitter with your cell phone number so you can tweet using text messaging on your mobile phone.

    Twitter charges nothing for this service, but any text messaging or data charges imposed by your phone carrier may apply.

    Choose your country/region and enter your phone number. The first number in the box is a country code, with +1 being the code for the United States.

    Then decide whether you want people who know your phone number to be able to type it in and find you on Twitter.

    Click the "Start" button to start receiving tweets on your mobile phone as SMS messages.

    Twitter will give you a special code to use to activate your mobile tweeting experience. If you are in the United States, you will text that code to 40404.

    Mobile SMS tweets can get annoying fast, so it works best for people who have unlimited text messaging phone plans and don't mind getting a lot of tweets.

    Many people opt to send but not receive tweets on their mobile phones. To discontinue receiving tweets as text messages, send a text message with the word "STOP" in it to the number for your messages (40404 in the U.S.)

    You can selectively turn on a few of your Twitter pals or, say, your significant other to receive their tweets. Simply send another text message with the message, "On@username."

  1. Email Notifications

    Here is where you choose what kind of email alerts you want to receive from Twitter and how often you'll get communications from Twitter.

    Your choices are basically:

    • when someone sends you a direct message
    • when someone mentions you in a tweet or sends you a reply
    • when someone follows you
    • when someone retweets your tweets
    • when someone marks your tweets as favorites
    • new features or products announced by Twitter
    • updates to your Twitter account or services
  2. Profile

    This is one of the key areas in the settings, controlling your personal photo what your bio says about you.

    From top to bottom, the choices are:

    • Photo--Here's where you upload the bio photo others will see. The file types accepted are jpg, gif and png, but the cannot be more than 700 kilobytes in size.
    • Header--This is where you can upload a custom Twitter header image, which is a large horizontal image similar to Facebook's cover photo. Header images are optional, not required.
    • Name--Here is where you enter your real name, or the real name of your business.
    • Location--This box is intended to be where you live. Some people go in and change it depending on where they are traveling.
    • Website--Twitter invites you to share your personal or business website address here, so it pre-populates this box with "http://." It invites you to fill out the rest of the web address for a site of your choosing. The idea is to offer a link on your profile page that people can click to learn more about you. The link will appear prominently immediately beneath your username on your profile page, so it's likely to get a lot of click. Choose this link thoughtfully. It's a good idea to use your full Web address here and avoid URL shorteners, since Twitter allots you space for this link and the full address provides more information to people who see it.
    • Bio-Twitter gives you a mere 160 characters to write your bio, which is why it refers to this as a "one line bio." That is barely longer than a tweet, but you can convey a lot if you choose your words wisely. One popular formula for bios is to use one and two-word nouns describing you and include something light-hearted, such as, "Actress, mother, serious golfer and chocoholic." Most people leave their bios alone after writing them. Others update them frequently to reflect changes in their business or life, using it as an infrequent status update of sorts. When you're done, click the "Save" button at the bottom of the page.
    • Facebook--Here is where you can choose to connect your Facebook and Twitter accounts if you want, so that tweets you write can be automatically posted to your friends or fans on Facebook.
  1. Design--This is where you can upload a custom Twitter background image, and change the font and background colors for your Twitter pages. The design options you choose will appear both on your timeline and profile page. Follow the instructions to customize your Twitter page appearance.
  2. Apps--This page lists all the other services that contain applications you have authorized to access your Twitter account, including popular third-party Twitter tools. Typically, these will include top Twitter clients or dashboard services that you might use to monitor your Twitter account, as well as mobile apps you use to read and send tweets from your cell phone. A button labeled "Revoke Access" appears beside the name of each application that has been granted access to your Twitter account. Clicking it will turn off that application.
  1. Widgets--This page is a handy interface for adding a tweet box displaying your tweets in real time to your own website or any site of your choosing. The widget interface allows customization of the tweet box display, too.