Long web links are so old-fashioned, and boy! Do they ever look spammy. Making use of a good URL shortener to minimize the number of characters in a link is the way to go on the web these days, especially if you want to keep all your online friends and followers happy.
There are a lot of options for shortening your links, and some even provide additional services like link bookmarking and analytics on your clicks. Check out the following URL shortening providers that you can get started with using right away. (P.S. If you need to change your URL on your social network page, it's easy to do.)
Bitly is at the top of the URL shortening game. It's one of the most widely used options out there, and you'll often find it integrated with lots of other services as well as third party apps like TweetDeck and TwitterFeed. With Bitly, you can track how many clicks your shortened links receive, plus bookmark and organize your links on your own personalized Bitly dashboard.
Here’s Google’s very own URL shortener, which is a popular choice that’s useful for just getting the job done as quickly as possible. As you shorten your links, Google will display them below with its long URL version, when it was created, its corresponding shortened goo.gl link and how many clicks it has received. You can also get a visual glimpse of your engagement for a different perspective.
As of March 30, 2018, Google's URL shortener is only available to active users, and the data generated by those shortened URLs will only be available until March 2019. At that time, Google will completely disable the URL shortener and all associated data will be lost. See the company's blog to learn more about the changes that are taking place.
VivAds used to be one of the top shortening choice in the past, and people still use it a lot today, however it does include a couple more characters compared to others like Bit.ly and Goo.gl. With VivAds, you can actually customize the end letters and numbers as an option. For example, a shortened link may be: http://vivads.net/webtrends. This is a nice extra feature if branding is important to you or if you want to make your link easier to memorize.
Another popular alternative, Ow.ly is a link shortener from the leading social media application known as HootSuite. You can shorten a link right away, although you’ll need to enter a CAPTCHA code. You can also share files, images and videos easily with Ow.ly in all sorts of different formats. The real benefit of using this link shortener comes with using it in conjunction with HootSuite itself for all your social media marketing.
Is.gd provides one of the simplest URL shortening experiences by giving you nothing more than a field to input your long link so you can instantly transform into a shorter one. There are no real extra features or services, so this is good choice if you just want to get the job done as fast and as smoothly as possible without all the extra fluff like signing in and CAPTCHAs and other stuff.
Have you heard of Buffer? It's only one of the most popular social media management tools currently out there! Check out our review of this fantastic tool to see how it works. Whenever you paste a link into Buffer to be scheduled to post at a later time, it automatically shortens the link for you. You can also log into your Buffer account on the web or by downloading the mobile app to track your analytics and see how many clicks that your links have gotten.
AdF.ly takes an interesting approach to link shortening by offering its users the opportunity to earn money by using its service. The more clicks you get on your AdF.ly links, the more money you earn. Although the earnings are small, it can certainly add up if you can attract a lot of clicks. You'll also get detailed statistics for every link when you sign up for an account, and you're paid via PayPal for payouts as low as $5.
Bit.do is another great alternative that's both simple and powerful. In addition to easy link shortening, you can use the service with your own domain, customize the characters at the end of your links, get real-time statistics and even see which countries your clicks are coming from. You can use this service with or without an account.
TinyURL used to be one of the top shortening choice in the past, and people still use it a lot today, however it does include a couple more characters compared to others like Bit.ly and Goo.gl. With TinyURL, you can actually customize the end letters and numbers as an option. For example, a shortened link may be: http://tinyurl.com/webtrends. This is a nice extra feature if branding is important to you or if you want to make your link easier to memorize.