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Using URL Shorteners for Online Business

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What are URL shorteners?

URL shorteners are online services to help change a messy and lengthy URL into a shortened URL, usually with less than 20 characters.

For example:

Clickbank‘s most popular product for making money at home in the eBusiness section has a long URL like this:

http://d3044s8v1m9-3zad0g4o2sspx0.hop.clickbank.net/?tid=GET_CASH_FOR_SURVEYS_URL

Now I change this long ugly URL into a tiny short one using adf.ly URL shortener:
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http://adf.ly/UqtZa.

You may have noticed that when you click the short URL, you are directed to an ads page for 5 second before you can reach your destination page. This is how to use short URLS to make money online.  (If you have AdBlock on your computer, you may not be able to see it, but read on there are more.)

With the advent and prosperity of social networks such as Facebook and twitter, URL shorteners gain more and more footing online.  Twitter uses all shortened URLs in its Tweets due to its 140 characters restriction. Friendfeed  aslo automatically converts links into tiny URLs. StumbleUpon offers its own URL shortener for users to syndicate content with one easy click.

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Where to use shortlinks?

You can use your shortlinks on Twitter, Facebook; or to create QR codes for your blog, business online; you can also make youtube addresses into smalrt short ones; change your eBay auction links into tiny URLs; post short URLs onto your blogs, forums and its signatures; or use shortlinks to mask your affiliate links. Shortlinks not only look tidy, but also help to prevent broken links or link wrappings.

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URL shorteners help to track clicks

Not all URL shorteners offer you ads revenue, but many of them provide tracking capability which is very useful for online business. One URL shortener I use the most is bit.ly.

Whenever I have a new post published on my blog, I use bit.ly to shorten it before I start promotion on many social networks .  I can then check bit.ly’s “stats” tab to find out the exact number of clicks and where all these clicks come from.

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Using URL shortener for your favourite links collection

Many URL shorteners offer bookmark, organize and share functions for your favourite links. You can bundle them or archive them for future reference. You can easily click “share” to pass your favourite links onto your fans and followers.

Combine URL shorteners and IFTTT to automate daily tasks

I found out this to be very useful. To explain this, I need to introduce a free online service called IFTTT. I use IFTTT to automate many of my daily tasks, especially for my new posts promotion. If you have created a website or a blog,  you would understand how time-consuming it is to promote your content on multi-channels including ever-growing social networks.
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This is how I do it to automate most of my marketing jobs on social networks:

  • I use bit.ly to shorten my URL
  • I create a new “recipe” on IFTTT, it reads like this: IF Bit.ly Then Facebook, or Twitter, or other channels you choose to use. (To learn how to use IFTTT, check out my easy-to-understand infographic about IFTTT.)

Once you set this up, all you need to do is to constantly upload your new URLs to bit.ly and watch these free online tools to do the tricks for you.

Useful URL shorteners for  your online business

Except the aforementioned adf.ly and bit.ly, there are many URL shorteners that you can use to meet your needs.  If you are looking for earning passive income from short URLS, I have a dedicated article introducing several great tools for you.  Otherwise, the list below will give you a good reference to explore more URL shortener options.

Google URL shortener:

http://goo.gl/

If you use feedburner for your blog/website email registration, you will find all your links have been shortened automatically and saved. Using this service, all your shortlinks and metric statistics can be accessed by public. This is great for free advertising.
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Make your links look creepy:

http://www.shadyurl.com

I can use this service to change my blog’s url from http://onlinebz.com to http://5z8.info/top-ten-vietnam-massacres_y7t0ru_hack-outlook. This service helps to create a curiosity over your URLs, which might help to generate more click-through.

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Other services to look into:

  • thnlnk.com
  • ow.ly
  • goo.gl
  • is.gd
  • idek.net
  • tinyurl.com
  • su.pr
  • DiggBar
  • ff.im
  • budurl.com
  • pagetweet.com
  • tiny.cc
  • yourls.org
  • snipr.com
  • lnk.by
  • twicdoc.com
  • fur.ly
  • ur1.ca
  • hyperurl.com
  • memurl.com
  • metamark.net
  • urlgator.com
  • shorl.com
  • simurl.com
  • shrinkurl.us
  • tighturl.com
  • bioweb.me
  • delivr.com
  • ho.io
  • link.aero
  • surl.me
  • urlcut.com
  • url.ie
  • yep.it
  • yi.tl
  • clockurl.com
  • gg.gg
  • plx.ca
  • apsense.cc
  • 7kb.co

 

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**Disclosure of Material Connection:
Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally or believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials.”

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