What are your thoughts about URL Shortener?

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Hey Everyone! We are working on a URL shortener that enables you to offer your audience a custom message + opt-in form just before the content is shared. Would you be interested in this? Yes/No/Why not? Any feedback is appreciated. Thank you!
 

djbaxter

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#2
I'm not sure how to interpret the fact that you posted this in the forum feedback and suggestions section.

If you are asking about using something like this for BizWarriors forum, no. Our Forum Rules explicitly prohibit the use of URL shorteners for a reason: We believe that to protect our members any outgoing links should be clear about the destination of those links.

If you are asking about this more generally, personally my answer also would be no. I rarely use URL shorteners except occasionally for Twitter given the character restrictions. What is currently available is adequate for that purpose and I would have no use for enhancements.

Others may feel differently, of course, but in that case your question should be posted in a different section of this site.
 

Edvin

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#3
Hi milosparks,

I see url shortner as one of many strategies for tracking campaign efforts (e.g. print mailer linked to homepage).
If you are asking if I would use such a tool? Well, I already have a strategy in place; that is, use Google's shortner and a tool like survey monkey, which provides easy form builder and custom logic. Technically, I would probably use limesurvey on my own hosted environment; but, that is a different story.

If you are inquiring about the need for such product; then I would ask why would a marketer want to use your tool as-appose to existing familiar (free/paid) solutions? Without a strategy or differentiator, you may not get the traffic that you are hoping for.

Hope that helps...

Best,
Edvin
 
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#4
Url shortener is a manageable tool for online marketers. I guess, it is advantageous when it comes to content distribution.
 
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#5
I think URL shortener is a great tool. It is an online application that converts a regular link into the condensed format. Everyone prefer short and clean URL. URL shortener especially helps in twitter post because twitter post uses a limited character if we are sharing a full URL it may be difficult to share at some point. So we use URL shorter to share a link.
 

djbaxter

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#6
Everyone prefer short and clean URL.
I don't. With all the trickery and phishing going on these days, I don't click on anything unless I am confident that I know where that link is going to take me.

URL shortener especially helps in twitter post because twitter post uses a limited character if we are sharing a full URL it may be difficult to share at some point. So we use URL shorter to share a link.
That is the only place I sometimes us a shortener, and even for Twitter if I don't need it I use the original URL.

Also please note: Per our Forum Rules, the use of link shorteners on this forum is prohibited.
 
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#7
An url shortener does what it says. Shortens the URL. But why does anyone need this? Tracking and marketing strategies are not based on the shortening of the URL but in the real URL it represents. Therefore, marketing strategies are irrelevant to URL shortening. Personally i am wary of clicking on shortened URLs exactly for reasons mentioned above. Where am i going if i click this link? Who knows...
 

Edvin

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#8
...marketing strategies are irrelevant to URL shortening...
I disagree. ShortURLs have their place.
For example, you'll find them in many technical journals. This makes it easy to type as well as provides a mechanism for tracking.

I recently created multiple print ad banners and wanted to track their effectiveness. My domain (www.STEMLearning.education) is unpleasantly long and would be too small for people driving-by the banner. Instead, I used STEM.AT/MyCity. I own the STEM.AT domain and used the yourls.org to create my own contextual short urls to google campaign url for my site.
However, upon reflection (after spending my money), I realized that there is a better strategy. That is, I could buy the domain MyCitySTEM.com (as part of marketing budget) and have that redirect to my URL encoded tracking landing page.
This strategy would work well with other campaigns (e.g. radio) and not suffer the url-shortned stigma.
The only downside I see is that my "branded domain" is lost; however, I am too small to worry about that for now...
 
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#9
Hi Edvin, i did not say that shortened URLs are useless, i said they are irrelevant to the marketing strategy. Part of the marketing strategy is tracking visitor origin via variables that you put in the URL. Making the URL shorter does not help you with this, you do not track better with a shortened URL. This is what i meant.

Also, you can do URL shortening on your own domain without using one of those services. You can easily make:
wwwSTEMLearning..education/rj349
map to
wwwSTEMLearning..education/ad?source=highwayBanner1&campaign=august

This way you don't have to worry about losing your brand name in the ads. Now, if your main domain is too long, that's another issue altogether. :)
 

djbaxter

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#10
Also Edvin, my objection and that of others posting here has been the bitly or goog.le typ shorteners which give you no clue at all where those URLs will take you.

Shorteners like STEM.AT/MyCity which appear on your merchandise or advertising make sense and are fine because you know in advance where you will land.
 

Edvin

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#11
Lot of good info in this thread

wwwSTEMLearning.education/rj349
Above link would be ridiculous on a billboard or radio ad; hence the rational to get a branded domain "shortner" as part of marketing campaign.

No one will see or remember above URL on a banner when they drive down the street at 40mph. I can't even fit it on my banner.

IMG_20180811_122538.jpg

But, to your point, I can't think of good example of online links that need anonymous "shortener'; but, I like your idea of adding shortener to my domain if I want to use it with online campaigns (e.g. online ad banners, social campaigns, etc).

I still prefer my idea for print and radio.
 
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#12
The above url was an example, that's how most of these shorteners work. They don't give you much option, like bit.ly/sdfg45

But you are not obliged to do it like that on your own website. There you have control so you can easily make yourwebsite.com/turlock
 
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