Are you searching for the best URL shorteners to deal with long and complicated links? If it’s yes, you’re in the correct place. In this article, we’ll discuss all the best available link shorteners in brief, out of which most are free.
In any business, managing long URLs can be a daunting task. The length of such links often makes them look like spam and creates difficulty while sharing on different platforms like emails or social media. To resolve this issue, a good URL shortener (or link shortener) is always desirable.
In simple words, a URL shortener is an easy and reliable solution to shorten long & bulky URLs. Those shortened links direct to the exact same location as the original one. And as the link shortener provides a custom name to the shorter URL, it becomes easier to manage and share.
Before jumping into the collection of these URL shorteners, let’s know a bit further about them.
A. Why Use a URL Shortener Tool? (6 Reasons to Use)
Now, after you have a little idea about a URL Shortener, here are some points on why you should use it and how this tool can help to boost your business.
- Create Pretty & Appealing Links: The URL shortener tool converts long & complicated links into neat and tiny forms within a few clicks. Free from any jumbled letters & numbers, such crafted links are visually appealing.
- Shorter Links are More Shareable: Shorter links are more shareable on various social media platforms. With short links, you get to present more content. Not to mention, your audience will share neat links without any hesitation.
- Shorter Links get More Clicks: Shortened URLs can be great for social media marketing as they can strike a greater number of audiences. Taking up less space, it’s good for online business cards and advertisements.
- Easy to Track URLs: You can create various links from a single one. For example; you can create an individual short URL for Twitter, Facebook, and an email newsletter. This feature helps to track and boost traffic to generate leads on your site.
- Create Custom Branded URLs: You can create your very own custom branded URLs with ease. Also known as a Vanity URL, such links will have a brand name or a relevant business keyword in their domain name.
- Metrics that Help to Know Your Audience: Some URL shortening services have cool features like tracking, metrics, and customization. You can get a brief info about your visitors and their preferences. Analyzing such data, you can create better strategies to upgrade your brand’s performance.
Even with the advanced features, the URL shortening services are simple, fast, reliable, and easy to use. They will help to fix your complications and help your business thrive in every aspect.
B. How to Choose the Best URL Shortener Service?
Out of numerous options of URL shorteners available, choosing the right one can be tricky. To help you out with it, here are some must-have features that you can search for in your ultimate URL shortener.
1. Easy Link Shortening
As said earlier, the main job of any URL shortener is to simplify long and complicated URLs. With that said, the conversion process should be easy, reliable, and simple. This way, you can fulfill the goal of generating traffic to your blog/website without going through many hassles.
2. URL Branding/Branded Links
Branded links have essential value in markets as they’re often trusted as secured and spam-free.
Thus, an ideal URL shortener must have the option of customizing its links with relevant keywords or brand names. Such URL branding gains the trust of customers easily and aids in more personalized marketing.
3. Link Tracking
Many URL shortening services come with a comprehensive link tracking feature. It allows you to identify your major traffic via detailed information regarding geolocation, date, language, and others. It especially helps your marketing related campaigns a lot easier and effective.
4. Click Analytics/Powerful Analytics
Every stats and data available through click analytics by the URL shorteners can prove to be a game-changer for your business. You can analyze and improvise your business performance via metrics like click rates, demographics, and real-time tracking.
5. Extensive Integration
The integration of URL shorteners with various marketing tools like CRM (Customer Relationship Management) helps to rebrand and shorten links more effectively.
6. Domain Management
With features like domain management, the URL Shortener helps to manage multiple domains. This comes in handy for larger businesses running multiple campaigns with individual domains.
7. Free or Premium Plans
Last but not least, the plans you prefer for having in your business is a vital decision. A small business might not need many advanced features so they can stick to free plans. Otherwise, there are several paid tools to choose from.
So, these are the features that are suitable for an ideal URL shortener. You can select them as per the need and expectations of your business.
9 Best URL Shorteners to Make Long URLs Shorter
Now, we’ve come to the main content of this article – the list of best link shortener tools. We selected these services based on their ease of use, features, support, pricing, and more.
Let’s check them out!
1. Bitly (Free + Premium Plans)
Bitly is the best URL shortener available online. It’s a simple and easy to use link shortener tool. It allows you to build and manage the shortened links without any hassles. Offering a smooth user experience, it helps to manage your marketing campaigns and provide analytics for your website.
You can use Bitly for any kind of URL shortening services. From basic services to business-grade, it really stands out and is the best all-around URL shortener.
- Comprehensive dashboard
- Can track over 20 real-time data analytics
- Best for both large and small business
- Fully Responsive
- Integration with Zapier and TweetDeck
- Generous free plans
2. Rebrandly (Free + Premium Plans)
Rebrandly is one of the leading link management platforms proven for creating and sharing branded links. With the advanced URL shortening technology, Rebrandly comes with a ton of features. For example, link tracking, account management, and branding analytics.
You can also use Rebrandly to create unique and striking custom URLs even in its free plan. Then, you can easily share them on various social networks. Also, you can even customize them if needed.
- Bulk link creation
- Automatic QR (Quick Response) code generation
- UTM parameters
- 100+ app integrations
- Emojis on short links
- GDPR compatible
3. TinyURL (Free)
Providing free services, TinyURL is the best URL shortener for quick results in every anonymous use. Since 2002, it has proven to be an efficient option when you’re in a hurry or need a quick link that never expires.
It has the simplest shortening services of all as it requires no sign-up or any kind of authorization. Plus, it also provides enhanced features like previewing links, customizing keywords, and other toolbar options.
- Best for anonymous usage
- Hassle-Free Service
- Fast redirection
- Customization of the shortened URL
- Offers a fully functioning bookmarklet
4.Ow.ly (Free + Premium Plans)
Another popular URL shortener, Ow.ly is a tool integrated with Hootsuite, a social media management tool. With Ow.ly, you can shorten a link even while posting on any social media platform. Thus, it’s perfect for businesses wanting to focus on public networking.
To use Owly for free, you need to create a Hootsuite account. By doing so, you get access to a secured dashboard where you can upgrade to get more features like systemic analytics, custom branded URL, etc.
- Track URL performance metrics
- Real-time analytics
- Custom branded URL
- Social Media Compatible
- Rank monitoring
- Demonstrate Social ROI (Return on investment)
- Mobile platform supportive
5. T2M (Paid Plan Only)
An affordable all-in-one solution for URL shortening, T2M is one of the best URL shorteners on the market. Uniquely designed, it features two separate dashboards each for location information and device/platform.
Alike, you can explore several advanced features with T2M. it can generate a QR code along with the short URL. It also allows lining access to URLs, one-click social share, printable QR code. Likewise, it ensures systematic performance with its super easy and reliable analytics.
- Personalized short URLs
- Full-scale analytics
- One-click domain mapping
- Auto-generated QR code
- No expiry URL or spam policy
- CSV Import
6. YOURLS (Free)
YOURLS stands for Your Own URL Shortener. It is a free, lightweight, and open-source tool that provides convenient ways to manage shorten links. You can download the latest version of YOURLS at GitHub.
Using YOURLS, you own your own data along with link management services like custom links and free traffic statistics. If you want advanced functionalities, it allows you to build and install plugins too.
- Historical click reports
- Referrers tracking
- Minimalist URL route
- Track visitors geo-location
- Simple installation process
- Highly customizable
- Allows self-hosting
7. URL Shortener by Zapier (Free)
The best URL shortener for creating and saving links automatically, URL Shortener by Zapier is a great option. Zapier itself is a coding-free tool that integrates numerous apps including email marketing tools and makes them work together without any hassle.
You can simplify any type of links using the URL shortener by Zapier. You can easily share them on social sites or any Zapier connected apps to automate workflow and increase productivity.
- Create Zap (Zapier’s automated workflow)
- Automatically stores links in a spreadsheet
- Upgraded link tracking
- Monitor performance & engagement
- Instantly shares shortened URLs on social media
- Less effort, more output
8. Shorby (Paid Plan Only)
Designed to change the pattern of URL sharing for Instagram users, Shorby is a digital tool different from any regular URL shortener. Shortby provides a customizable short ‘profile’ URL. Thus, whenever you create new content, you don’t have to update the bio link every time.
Instead, you can add your latest content to Shorby and the link in your bio will automatically take you there. In such a way, it’s perfect for a creator who uses Instagram for content promotion.
- Supports Instagram’s “One link in Bio” rule
- Customizable shortened URL
- No hassle of frequent updates
- Link Retargeting
- Trackable short links
- Click-all boxes for platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp
- The payment as per the usage
9. ClickMeter (Paid Plan Only)
Another paid plan in the list, ClickMeter highlights an in-depth analysis along with creating short URLs. It can monitor, compare, and optimize marketing links of all kinds to increase conversion rates. You can also search for broken links, blacklist, and avoid fraud using Clickmeter.
As the name suggests, it acts more like a click-rate optimizer. Compatible with multiple languages, it’s very useful for agencies using Google Adwords or similar advertising networks.
- Integration with popular CMS platforms
- URL Encryption
- Clone Links
- Custom Domain Management
- Google Analytics support
- Device-based targeting
Hence, these are our top picks for 9 Best URL Shorteners to make long URLs shorter. In case you’re thinking why there isn’t Google URL shortener in the list, it’s because Google disabled its URL shortener (Goo.gl) and user link data from March 2019. However, the existing links still redirect to their intended destination.
On the whole, using a URL shortener service is proven to be useful in many ways. Not only it creates clean and user-friendly URLs but also helps to optimize its performance through tracking and analytics. And if in any way your business incorporated marketing or advertising campaigns, their use becomes inevitable.
So, this is it for the best URL shorteners. Do let us in the comments section below if you liked it or found helpful. In case you have some confusion or any queries related to the topic, we will help to solve them out.
Till then you can go through other articles like ‘What is a Website URL?’ to get more ideas.