URL shortening is a technique on the World Wide Web in which a Uniform Resource Locator (URL) may be made substantially shorter and still direct to the required page. This is achieved by using a redirect which links to the web page that has a long URL.

Link shortening services such as Bitly, TinyURL, and over 200 others, allow users to take a link that might be too long to post within the confines of a twitter post and generate a shorter link that redirects to the longer URL that the user wants to post.

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 10 URL shortening providers that you can get started with using right away.

Many times you have limitation to write your view in minimum character such as twitter have 140 character limitation to express your view. While Sharing your blog post URL on twitter use URL shorterner website to meet 140 character limit in twitter.

How URL Shortening Website Works:
Every time a user shortens a link on any of the popular URL shortening services, the link gets stored in the database under a unique ID or a date and time stamp.

That date and time stamp and/or unique ID is important if they want to count the clicks on the link for every individual separately. It also helps them keep the pages “permanent” because one date and time (or incremental unique ID) will not be repeated again in the future.

The URL shortening problem is all about generating a short and unique key (alias) for the given URL and whenever the user hits the alias, they will be redirected to the actual URL.

There could be at least two solution:

1. Encoding actual URL:

We can compute a unique hash (e.g., MD5 or SHA256, etc.) of the given URL. The hash can then be encoded for displaying. This encoding could be base36 ([a-z ,0-9]) or base62 ([A-Z, a-z, 0-9]) and if we add ‘-’ and ‘.’, we can use base64 encoding.

2. Generating keys offline:

We can have a standalone Key Generation Service (KGS) that generates random six letter strings beforehand and stores them in a database. Whenever we want to shorten a URL, we will just take one of the already generated keys and use it. This approach will make things quite simple and fast since we will not be encoding the URL or worrying about duplication or collisions. KGS will make sure all the keys inserted in our keys database are unique.
When you click on a shortened link, the link sends a request to the server where the server picks up the path “/1sOPFmQ” from the shortened URL.

The ”/1sOPFmQ” is a location on the database where the real link is stored along with the description of the page and other things relating to that URL.

Once the real URL is located in the database, a 302 or a 301 (redirect) request is issued by the server and it sends the user to the desired link.

Benefits of URL Shortening website:
1. people click more on short URL n comparison to Long URL
2. Small URL look cool
3. Track how much people clicked on your URL
Where to Use Short URL:

Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Any Messenger, Dropbox, Facebook News feed, Google Plus,

Here, best URL Shorten-er sites use to Shorten Long Links:

1. bit.ly

Bit.ly is the most used and popular URL shorteners websites. Bit.ly have option to track link analytics, audience intelligence and can measure campaign performance at one location. If you have account at bit.ly to track and keep details of your links. Bitly also have paid plans for create more short URL.

Benefit of Using Bit.ly
1. API Support
2. Track Link click count on daily basis
3. Dedicated Support Team

2. goo.gl

Goo.gl URL shortener from Google and becomes quite popular in short time. Use Goo.gl as logged in User so you can build history of URL shortening and able to track.

Benefits of Goo.gl
1. Fully free to us
2. Advance link click tracking
3. Easy to Use UI

3. tinyurl.com

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.

Benefit of Tinyurl
1. No need to login
2. Allow to shrink URL like affiliate link

4. Owl.ly

This is the official HootSuite URL shortener, which can be used as a stand-alone shortener on the web, or while logged on to the HootSuite dashboard on the web or mobile.

5. Shorte.st
Shorte.st URL shortener site also pays to you when your audience click a link shorten by Shorte.st. Shorte.st is one of the most popular online money making method. You can shrink up to 20 URL using short.st in one go.

Benetif of Shorte.st
1. Earn money by sharing URLs
2. Working with most countries, hence sites like adf.ly already blocked in many countries
3. Integrated script for use on website, automatically short all URLs at once

6. Deck.ly

This is the official TweetDeck URL shortener, which can be used on the TweetDeck desktop application, Android and Chrome (with support for iPhone and iPad forthcoming). Deck.ly allows you to write tweets longer than 140-characters and either display them within TweetDeck or link to them within another Twitter platform.

7. Su.pr
Su.pr is StumbleUpon’s official URL shortener. It allows you to syndicate content to StumbleUpon, Facebook and Twitter at the same time, suggests the best time of day to post, and allows you to schedule posts in the future.

The following 3 URL shorteners might not be ultra popular, but they deserve an honorable mention in this list for offering some innovative features (or just having a really cool name).

8. lnk.co

This URL shortener service offers an interesting proposition: make money by tweeting short links. Although it does allow you to use its service without this, if you register, you can apparently earn money when people click on the links you shorten. We haven’t tried this out, but the idea is pretty neat.

9. fur.ly

This one gets points for a pretty cute name, but fur.ly also has a unique method of shortening links. It allows you to input multiple links at once and shortens them into a single URL. When clicked, a fur.ly link will bring you to a web page that shows each link in sequence.

10. moourl.com

This is just a bare-bones URL shortener, but with a twist: it’s super, super cute. If you want to smile every time you shorten a link, use moourl.

11. Godaddy URL Shortener:

This one is exclusive for Godaddy users & if you are one of those 14 million users who have a domain or hosting with Godaddy, you should be able to access the Godaddy URL shrinker. This shrinker lets you create shortened URL with two different domain extension including x.co. I’m an existing Godaddy user & I love using it once in a while. The reason being, Godaddy is a trusted brand & I don’t have to worry about the dead link or cookie stuffing kind of thing.

12. Bit.do

shorten long URL and customize them.

Benefits of Bit.do
1. QR code for share
2. Track referrer sites
3. Expost Data link User’s IP, Location, Date in CSV or XLSX format

13. Is.gd
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.

14. Buff.ly
Have you heard of Buffer? It’s only one of the most popular social media management tools currently out there! Check out my 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.

15. AdF.ly
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.

16. Bit.do
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.

17. Mcaf.ee
McAfee is a leading computer and web security company that provides antivirus, encryption, firewall, email security and much more to its customers. With its own URL shortener, you can ensure that your long links are kept safe and secure for your visitors. Just keep in mind that there are a couple more characters in this option as compared to others like Bit.ly, Goo.gl and Ow.ly, so it’s not exactly the shortest URL shortener.

Categories: BloggingSEO

Rishi Sanuj

Rishi Sanuj is a software developer and working as a Web Developer in USA based software company.

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