Twitter has its own link shortener, t.co, that shortens any URL that you post on Twitter. This includes any Twitter link sent in tweets or direct messages. Although Twitter shortens links automatically, there are some special features that you can access using t.co. Let’s go over how to use the Twitter link shortener to create tiny URLs and track clicks.
You use t.co whenever you post Twitter links. Simply copy and paste a URL into a tweet, reply, or DM, and t.co will automatically convert it into a link of 23 characters or less. This helps keep your tweets under the character limit so you can add more to your post.
T.co also automatically scans your Twitter link to make sure the site it redirects to is safe. If the website has been flagged, then a warning message will pop up whenever someone clicks on the link, as shown below.
After you post a short URL on Twitter, you can use t.co to track clicks. On your tweet, click on the lower right button that shows three vertical bars–this will take you to the Twitter Analytics pop-up. This pop-up shows the number of impressions and engagements for your tweet. If you click “view all engagements”, you can also see the breakdown of your engagements by type, including link clicks. Because t.co automatically tracks clicks, you can view how many times your link has been clicked on in Twitter Analytics.
Yes, you can use another link shortener like Bitly or TinyURL to post links. Twitter will continue to track clicks for short URLs posted on Twitter from another URL shortener. Additionally, you can use your chosen shortener’s analytics to track clicks and other information for your links posted on Twitter.
Since t.co only works on Twitter and cannot be used to shorten a link on another site, you should subscribe to another URL shortening service if you frequently use short URLs to share content or information. For recommendations on the best URL shorteners for use on social media platforms, including Twitter, check out our article on the 5 Best URL Shorteners for Secure Link Sharing.
Learn More about Link Shorteners
Have more questions about how to use a link shortener or find the perfect URL shortener? We have you covered. Learn how to shorten a link, share a link on Instagram, and compare the best free and enterprise-level URL shorteners.