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We often feel like URL Shorteners are some of the best tools we have on the internet. Still, many people tend to feel strange with the use of URL shorteners. Having a good understanding of URLs can significantly impact how you use them in your marketing career. People often have questions in the following:
- How can we customize long links?
- How can we track the results?
- What if the long and clumsy distract my audience?
So if you are new to the field of URL shortening, then here's a list of valuable stuff that you will understand completely.
What about URL Shorteners?
Whether you are new in the social media marketing field, you may have seen the importance of the links' right uses. You might be thinking; links are relatively unknown sometimes. It can become a giant roller coaster (long URLs). Connections can become utterly complex, especially when you are monitoring them and sometimes links can be quite distracting. When you communicate some helpful information to your audience, you don't want to distract your readers with giant scary links.
Thanks to the benefits of URL shorteners. A URL shorteners tool can save you from many headaches when it comes to monitoring your links. It helps you to combine large URLs into smaller meaning sentences which we use in Twitter statuses.
Where & how can anyone shorten URLs?
Luckily, we are abundant enough to have a tremendous amount of URL shortening, including the networks and many dashboards we daily use. For having unique tools, many best sites provide URL shortening. Besides, they also provide full analytics and archives on everything you create. In these services (and URL shorteners in common), your link gets replaced by a new domain, e.g., ABC.com changes to bit.ly. Similarly, the permalink is replaced by a chain of numbers or sometimes letters. e.g., acb.com/random- words-articles to bit.ly/dhg7po1.
Best Link Shortening Service Providers
- Google URL shorteners
These websites provide clean interface URL shortening tools, and you also get advanced stats on clicks for all the links you shorten. Meanwhile, many social networks and social media outlets dashboards also offer a way to shorten lengthy URLs automatically. For example, if you share any link in the Buffer platform, it will be automatically shortened when you add it to your update. Besides, you can also use Buffer's "buff.ly"/shortener or the services we mentioned above.
Aside from this, Twitter automatically shortens links when you post something on the update box. There are several ways it happens. Here Twitter uses t.co, which is its URL shortening tool. Similarly, chances are Twitter will include a full URL feature. Or will shorten the link after showing the entire domain and the permalink. Right now, every post you post on Twitter will only hold up to 22 characters.
How to Use URL Shorteners in Marketing
There are several ways to use URL shorteners in marketing. Few have shared six best ways to use URL shorteners in marketing to enable users to create short URLs.
Create More Memorable Links with a Short Domain
If you have ever considered a Twitter feed or Moz, you will sometimes notice differences in their URLs.
The reality is they not using some magical tools, and it is a miracle of custom short URL
Links like this
After that, it becomes like this.
This process can be an excellent opportunity to spread some branding by the shortened links you share on your social media channels. Moreover, it could be a significant experiment to see if it helps signify your updates' engagement. In some ways, custom short URLs work better; some work excellently with full URLs. Besides, some work perfectly with buff.ly or bit.ly URLs. If you want to set up a custom short domain, you can check out tutorials on the internet. Besides, you can also buy custom short domains from any website and set them up quickly.
Track All of your Clicks and See How it Changes Over a While
Shortening links are worthy in itself, but how will you know people are clicking on them? The good news is, some URL shorteners provide you complete tracking over those links. There are several ways these links can be quickly tracked and a few URL shorteners track the links by themselves. Bitly is one of the best examples of this. Bitly will show you whenever you click on your link. It will also show you the transparency of sharing, and you will get a clear direction on how other Bitly-shortened links are getting traffic to the same page.
Many URL shorteners automatically connect Google Analytics tracking data. You can also manually add UTM tracking codes to any place and then shorten that place with an essential link shorter. Yet, some shortening tools will give you predetermined tracking codes and then mechanically affix them to any links you shorten.
Here the Buffer link shortener comes wonderfully, in our opinion. If you use Buffer's business plan, you can quickly add UTM tracking codes to any link you take with Buffer. We will show you exactly how to do this later in this article.
Personalize a Shortened bit.ly Link
The best thing about Bit.ly's link shortening tools is the ability to place short URLs. It means we can convert a link down below.
You can make it look like this:
Bit.ly/tips-6-tq (a link to an article on Moz tips)
Personalizing a shortened line can be a smooth way to provide people a bit of content for a comfortable medium. They get an idea of what they will get inside from the link.
Add a Shortened URLs on Your video
Suppose you are running a social media campaign that redirects users to a specific page; here, it will help the users know where they are going. It can be challenging when you are playing with long URLs. Thanks to link shorteners, it can make online redirection a significant deal and hassle-free to remember. For instance, you are writing an article "how to learn to code," Here, users will only click on this link once they know what it is all about. Therefore, users will get an exact online destination with a long URL.
A symbolic link like this may not be a problem. However, we are teaching how to code. However, even if users don't click on this link, they will remember the link.
Besides, if we consider a friendly shortened link, it is even more memorable.
That's significantly easier to remember and also looks super clean.
Add a Shortened URL in Any Normal Text-email
Most of the links people associate involve more than a chain of URL characters. Perhaps we are all used to text links and pressing buttons. At the same time, we don't find ourselves facing many challenges due to long URLs head-on.
On the other side, it can also project long URLs (especially when all decked out with UTM code) in the eyes of your audience before regular text emails. A short URL can run a standard text email with the long ugly link into a clear and readable message.
Add a Shortened URL to a Print Production
Suppose you want to run a print ad in a social media magazine for any of your products. You expect the campaign will drive traffic to your page, but here's the problem: the ideal page you want to spread among your audience is a long-on. Here you can quickly shorten that URL and have something more memorable and printable too. You will reflect your ad content more precisely among your prospects.
However, it doesn't stop only at print ads, and shorter URL tools can work in all kinds of further illustrations.
- Thank-you cards
- Coupon links
- Even letters to subscribers
How to Shorten the Link in Buffer for Business
Till now, you have the right understanding of what link shorteners can do with your online presence. Let's figure out how you can shorten your links and track them through Buffer and Google Analytics. Follow these steps:
- You will have to log into Buffer and click "setting."
- Afterwards, you can choose "link shortening" from the drop-down menu.
- You will be redirected to the place where you can manage the link shortening features. It also includes a buff.ly link shorter and a tracking system.
- Afterwards, you can select the link shortening service that suits your needs.
You don't have to get any further shortening service to shorten links. In a buffer business plan, you will get all types of URL features altogether. If you don't have a bit.ly account, you can get your account quickly to your Buffer profiles. In other words, Buffer will directly send you all the tracking data automatically to your bit.ly dashboard.
It doesn't matter whether you prefer buff.ly or bit.ly. You can quickly stack all the Buffer clicks. Just head over to the analysis tab. Then, what about the tracking code? Let's say you are using Google Analytics, and you are in the right place. Buffer in Business plan automatically ads UTM tracking code on all the links you share. You will only have to choose the UTM codes that you will use for your Buffer profile. Afterwards, Buffer will take care of the rest of the properties.
How Custom UTM Codes Work in Buffer
If you want to add tracking codes to your shortened, you will have to turn on the "Enable Campaign Tracking." You will have to go down to the bottom of the "Google Analytics Campaign Tracking" section, where you can quickly enable the campaign tracking option. After it, click on the "Customize Campaign Tracking" button.
- Once you click on that button, you will see several fields where you can add comparing medium, comparing sources, and ad-campaigns to your links. Let's understand these fundamentals down below.
- Campaign name means a reason that traffic is coming to your site. Buffer applies this reason to every link you share. The campaign source means it describes the place from where the traffic is coming. One thing that can be helpful is embedding in your social media name, and the profile is on. For example, if you share your Instagram profile, you might want to put Instagram as a campaign source.
- A campaign medium tells how users are getting on your page. For social media links, you can set the medium to "social."
After adding the link tracking to your URL shortener in Buffer, you can begin sharing links. Here's what happened after that:
- You create a link with your Buffer profile.
- Buffer will automatically shorten it. You will see this happening while setting up some posts.
- During the process of shortening, Buffer automatically adds Google Analytics tracking codes to the link.
- When your post is available, your audience will see your short link. If your visitors click on it, they will be redirected to the tagged URL.
How to Track Clicks Using the Google URL Shortener
Assuming you have the right understanding of how URL shorteners work. We also discussed ways to implement the right links with your campaigns. Now let's figure out how Google's URL shortener helps to only link and track clicks.
Before starting with Google shorteners, you must know that Google has recently shut down its URL shortening service. So, unfortunately, you can't use its service. If you click on the goo.gl link, you will be redirected to their database page. The Goo.gl URL shortener was available on https://goo.gl. Users had to sign in and create short links through Google's link tracking dashboard.
You are connected in social media marketing, consider using a URL shortener, whether it's for marketing your campaign or using it for a productivity hack. We learned a URL shortener is a tool that takes a long URL and makes it into several links.
While we also learned a custom or branded URL shorter is connected with your native custom domain to a URL shortener tool. After, it plans as a base for all the quick links you create. Many experts always suggest using their custom domain when sharing links for online purposes. The simple reasons, it lets to develop a link trust, brand awareness and also improve the click-through rate.
Moreover, a URL shortener can do many things for your brand. Shortening a URL helps to showcase what you want to project. It also comes with link masking, which adds another good point. In link masking, you can create any URL you wish to. We also talked about link tracking, and it is one of the number one reasons to go for a shorter link service.