Productivity Tools

Introducing Tiny URLs and Link Shorteners

Are you a marketer who wants to appeal to customers with short, to-the-point links? Are you a customer service representative who doesn’t want to share long support URL addresses on live chat? Or perhaps you’re just a regular internet user who is overwhelmed by long, confusing URLs and wants to know how to shorten a link. Regardless of who you are, tiny URLs can solve your concerns by condensing lengthy web addresses into manageable short URL links.

How Does a Tiny URL Work?

A link shortener automatically shortens the input link. This compressed URL acts as a redirect, which allows a web page to be accessible under more than one URL address. So, both the original URL and the shortened URL will direct the user to the same page.

These short links can either be permanent or expire after a set period depending on the options available by the link shortener. So, when using tiny URLs, it is important to research which link shortener provides the customization options that you need.

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Why use Tiny URLs? 

Tiny URLs are a great tool for businesses, marketers, and even individual users. They are simple to use and manage and, quite frankly, more aesthetically pleasing than long links. Internet users and potential customers are more likely to click on a shortlink than a long, jumbled one. Additionally, shortlinks take up less of a post’s word count on sites like Twitter and LinkedIn. With tiny URLs, you can use fewer characters to reach wider audiences and garner more clicks and views.

Consider the following example from Droplr. The web address for Droplr’s web page discussing Slack + Droplr integration is https://help.droplr.com/key-features/slack-droplr-integration. This link cannot easily fit into a messaging box, and is additionally difficult to type out. 

However, using bitly, this URL can be shortened to the following link, https://bit.ly/2FFWPss, which is much easier to view and type.

Of course, one issue with this compression is that it is no longer obvious what information can be accessed on the web page. This is why many online services that offer URL shorteners also include custom short links that let you design your own branded links with a paid subscription. These subscriptions typically include detailed analytics and link management services. This is great for marketers who want to assess which advertisements appeal most to which users and then customize their links accordingly. 

Are There Any Downsides to Tiny URLs? 

Unfortunately, in recent years, tiny URLs have become a tool for scammers and spammers. Because tiny URLs don’t include the name of the website they direct to, they can be used to send users to unexpected sites or even URL addresses that have been blacklisted. This practice can be used for something as innocent as rickrolling to something as damaging as infecting a computer with malware. The best link shortening services constantly scan  and disable spam-related shortlinks from redirecting.

Another potential downside to tiny URLs is that if the website that created the URL shuts down, the link will no longer redirect to the correct location. This phenomenon, known as linkrot, leads to broken and dead links that either redirect to the wrong site or stop working altogether. This is why it is important to use a link shortener that is well-known, safe, and sustainable. 

In all, the advantages of tiny URLs outweigh the potential problems. Tiny URLs create links that are short, sweet, and to the point. They are important tools for businesses and users who want to increase website traffic and attract customers. When creating or accessing a tiny URL, make sure that you use the correct link shortener to ensure that your shortlinks are safe, sustainable, and attractive.

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