HOW TO: Create Your Own Customized Short URL • Burt Systems Uganda

HOW TO: Create Your Own Customized Short URL

A custom shortened link is great for building a personal or business brand, as readers know exactly where it will lead when they see it shared on social networks. With these four easy steps, you can customize short links for your site and share branded URLs across the web using Bit.ly Pro.

While the rest of us were copy-and-pasting mumbo-jumbo from URL shorteners into our Twitter accounts, sites like The New York Timeswere smugly tweeting their links using shortened URLs like “nyt.ms.” Frankly, this made us a little jealous.

But now, Bit.ly makes it easy for the average Joe Blogger to create a custom short URL for free. You don’t even need to own a site that gets about 17 million unique visitors per month.

A custom shortened link is great for building a personal or business brand, as readers know exactly where it will lead when they see it shared on social networks. With these four easy steps, you can customize short links for your site and share branded URLs across the web using Bit.ly Pro.


1. Buy a URL — Make it Short


Domainr
There are a number of services you can use to find an available URL, but the most convenient for finding a short URL is Domainr. If you type in the word you want to include in your short URL, this site will provide the different ways you might assemble it with a variety of domains. It also lets you know which of these options is available for purchase.

Your URL will need to be fewer than 15 characters in order to work with Bit.ly Pro. Once you’ve picked one out, purchase it using a site like GoDaddy.com or Domain.com.


2. Register for Bit.ly Pro


Bit.ly
It is free to sign up for a Bit.ly Pro Beta account. With the account, you’ll be able to set up your customized short URL and view statistics on the customized short links that you create. Bit.ly will take as long as a week to approve your registration. Hang in there.


3. Set an A Record for Your Short URL to Point to Bit.ly


A Record
Log into your domain name registrar and set the A record, or DNS host, for your short URL to point to bit.ly’s IP address (at GoDaddy, the A record is located under the “Total DNS” tab). Bit.ly’s IP address is 168.143.174.97.


4. Verify Your Long Domain


shortenedURL
Enter the domain name you want to track (your site’s long domain) in your Bit.ly Pro account. This domain should not be the same as the short URL that you just set up. After you verify that you own the URL, bit.ly will automatically convert any links you shorten from that site to your custom short URL.


Share Your Custom Links


Once all of your virtual wires are connected, any URLs from your long domain will be custom-shortened, provided that you are logged into your Bit.ly account. This set up will not customize links to your site that others are sharing. That functionality, as seen with The New York Times, is only available at an enterprise-level Bit.ly partnership. When you reach those 17 million uniques per month, let us know, and we’ll show you how to get that rolling.

Burt Baguma
Burt Baguma
Most online business owners underestimate the power of online marketing in growing business and rely heavily on having a beautiful website to get them website visitors that convert into buyers. I'm sorry, I can't help you with your tears but I can help you understand why that concept is so wrong in these blog posts. Subscribe to my updates and I'll feed you the good stuff! Cheers!

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