There are plenty of tools we like to use when it comes to development and marketing our apps, but since Valentine’s Day is approaching we thought we’d highlight a particular service that we really “love.”
In a nutshell, bitly (http://bitly.com) is a free link shortening service allowing users to take a long link (for an article, blog, app, etc.) and make it into a shorter one. This is a valuable tool for Twitter users, who are limited to 140 characters per Tweet. You can also use the same short link in other social media avenues such as Facebook, Google + etc., and be consistent in your link building and sharing efforts.
For example, let’s say we wanted to share a link to our game in Twitter, Facebook, etc. Here’s the long link to our game “The Trout Family Swim and Fish Adventure” located in iTunes:
However, with bitly, we can shorten the link to this:
See the huge difference? We shortened the 81-character link to 21 characters.
Now, let’s take it one step further. When you sign up for a free bitly account, you can customize your bitly links. Therefore, our short link to our fishing game:
…can be changed to this or to anything we’d like:
How cool is that?
In addition, bitly saves all your shortened links and tracks clicks to your bitly links.
Tracking your clicks is extremely important in order to gauge what your fans and followers are clicking; what day; time of day, etc. Recently, we discovered our Sunday clicks aren’t that great, so we might change things up a bit on Sunday in order to earn better engagement. Also, bitly highly recommends A/B testing with your links http://bit.ly/1EVoW1H.
There are other bitly alternatives, such as:
* Google http://goo.gl/
* Tiny URL http://tinyurl.com/
* Ow.ly http://ow.ly/url/shorten-url (which is also available within Hootsuite).
Which link shortener do you use?