This article is meant to help find the best link shortener for your needs. It compares some of the features of popular services - mainly shortened links' lifespans, custom aliases feature, API functionality.
Pros: Clean interface; QR codes provided on-the-fly Cons: No analytics or other detailed statistics information can be found Shorten URLs up to 1000 characters (~5 per line) Add custom alias Free API access Groups (e.g.: "school" / "work") 10 seconds lifespan
AdFly . io http://adf.ly/ Pros: Lifetime stats available; API Cons: Unintuitive interface (see below) Note : Unlike Cutt.us, AdFly also allows users to shorten non-URLs (e.g.: "bmovie" - a shortened YouTube video link) Shorten URLs up to 1000 characters (~5 per line) Add custom alias Free API access Groups 10 seconds lifespan
Bitly http://bitly.com/ Pros: Strong analytics, detailed statistics Cons: No QR codes nor custom aliases allowed Lifetime stats available API C urrent total number of clicks and visits for each short URL is made clear upon clicking on it Adding custom alias has no effect Shorten URLs up to 500 characters (~3 per line) Add custom alias Paid API access Custom time presets
Goo.gl http://goo.gl/ Pros: Custom variables that can be used for tracking purposes Cons: Lifetime stats not provided Lifetime stats available API Custom time presets Add custom alias Goo.gl URL is shared instead of the link itself Shorten URLs up to 100 characters (~2 per line) Free API access
Tiny URL http://tinyurl.com/ Pros: Available in many languages Cons: Unintuitive interface Note : Also provides an option to shorten plain text (e.g.: "this is my favorite website") Lifetime stats available C urrent total number of clicks and visits for each short URL is made clear upon clicking on it Adding custom alias has no effect Shorten URLs with a wide range of character limits (up to 2,000 characters) Add custom alias Free API access Custom time presets
Bit.do http://bit.do/ Pros: Custom aliases allowed; Tag option Cons: No analytics Lifetime stats available API C urrent total number of clicks and visits for each short URL is made clear upon clicking on it Adding custom alias has no effect Shorten URLs with a wide range of character limits (up to 2,000 characters) Add custom alias Paid API access Custom time presets
As you can see, the quality of some services' features depends on which plan you buy - both TinyURL's free plan and Goo.gl provide different statistics than their paid ones, while Adfly only allows the user to set 3 custom variables in its free version. The other 6 were tested without any subscription for all the services at hand.
All of the above do not require registration, and provide a simple way to shorten URLs (though some do it better than others). However, if you want more options, there are also some other choices that require an account:
YOURLS http://yourls.org/ Pros: Custom variables; Full statistics for all shortened links; Social features Cons: Cannot shorten plain text Lifetime stats available API C urrent total number of clicks and visits for each short URL is made clear upon clicking on it Social features Custom time presets Add custom alias Track your visitors' countries and OS Shorten URLs up to 2,000 characters (~8 per line) Free API access
Snipurl http://snipurl.com/ Pros: Custom variables; Tag option Cons: Lifetime stats available API C urrent total number of clicks and visits for each short URL is made clear upon clicking on it Add custom alias Shorten URLs with a wide range of character limits (up to 2,000 characters) Free API access
Snipr http://snipr.com/ Pros: Global account that can provide statistics from all its services from one place Cons: Can only shorten plain text Lifetime stats available API Tag Add custom alias Custom time presets Can only shorten plain text Shorten URLs up to 500 characters (~3 per line)
This article's intention was not to compare the services' features or their quality, but rather make you aware of them if you did not know of their existence. For example, it is possible that some of these services may share a great number of links and/or clicks amongst themselves, thus skewing the actual numbers we see via each service. This will only be discerned if all 10 services share one single link and then shorten it with 5 different services. It was not tested whether or not this happens, yet considering the fact that there are now at least ten such URL shorteners (counting those mentioned in my article as well as those who were not mentioned but still exist), the likelihood of such sharing happening would seem quite high (i.e.: they all use different third-party servers).
Also, if you do not mind the lack of analytics, then go ahead and use TinyURL or Goo.gl to shorten your URLs - they are free services after all! Just remember that no matter what URL shortener you choose to use, it is always best practice to include a target site's link in addition to its short one (e.g.: "Click here for more information" instead of just "click here"). Shortened links are not good for SEO , because Google sees them as white-labeled - i.e.: there is nothing special about them; anyone can create them at any time, anywhere. In addition to that, search engines ignore spaces when crawling pages on a website, thus making shortened URLs nearly impossible to find; they do not pass along any PageRank . Lastly, some URL shorteners ( TinyURL included) may use trackers to record information about how many times each link was clicked.
Also, if you notice something inaccurate in the article or found another URL shortener service that you wish to be featured here (or removed), then please write a comment on this article telling me what it is and I will either edit my original post or make a new one where I credit your name with the addition. If you do not want your website to be mentioned on this site then simply ask me to remove it - there's no need for harsh words! Thank you for reading, and I hope it helps.
End Article background information.
Top Blog Posts
- FOCUS ON YOURSELF NOT OTHERS - Best Motivational Speech 2021 4 months ago
- How To Build Your URL Short System (Premium URL Shortening Setup) 3 months ago
- British English Slang [Advanced Pronunciation Practice] - Reductions & Contractions 3 months ago
- Learn HTML in 12 Minutes 2 months ago
- Improve Your Problem Solving Skills 4 months ago