Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Url shortener: What is the benefit for SEO?

There are several services shortening urls or url shorteners like, for the most known / important, bit.ly, tinyurl.com, short.ie. Some services are offered by big players like Google web with goo.gl and some sites like Twitter micro blogging with twurl / tweetburner.
The purpose of this article is not to mention all the services shortening urls (url shortener services) but trying to understand if there are SEO benefits from their use. However, I will make a small benchmarck url shorteners existing key based on 7 criteria.

Url shorteners (or url shortening services? What is it?

Ndous live in a world of micro blogging, communities and social networks where every character counts. Services shortening urls are there for us to turn a long url, complex and full of incomprehensible parameters, in a very short url with ten character maximum.

For example, when you want to share a url like this:


that it may not go through mail, since some email clients will cut on the first line besides some people (eg my grandfather) dessu not click through fear of receiving a virus or other malware (yes, it still exists, I promise ). Finally, some sites like twitter only accept 140 characters per message while the url alone has 180, etc ... you shake so happy to be able to transform this long url http://bit.ly/rx56h_7, right? So you see the importance of having such services.

Url shortener: What is the benefit for SEO?

While searching the web for examples of successful implementation of the url shortening service, I realized that all the interest of the service is either marketing or usual but no benefit in terms of SEO optimizations pure . even when I draw some conclusions:

1. The primary objective of using url shortener is no SEO since the links and not spend any credit used to the destination page.

2. There is a question of reliability of the services that could make a havoc on the community website and social networks if shortening services came to breaking down. All links devienderaient 'dead' (dead links) preventing / killing all information sharing networks.

3. A point of view or usability user experience, the use of these services are very useful since it is always easier to find / share a link short (short) a full link. This is especially true since some micro-blogging services like twitter limit the number of characters in your message to 140.

4. An SEO point of view, there is therefore no direct benefit as links to redirect 301/302 or javascript (some urls shorteners like urlenco.de ) choice to landing pages.

Good practice is therefore to use a 301 permanent redirect , but it may not transmit any credit to the destination page. there is no interest to prefer this type of service (from a SEO point of view) a good hard link, which in turn, send all the popularity and will also incidentally to know / recognize the brand since we see clearly the domain name (in the case of Miccro blogging or social networks).

Benchmarck the 3 urls shortener services (url shorteners)

It exste dozens of services shortening urls and he was born just one day ... how to choose one to use in your daily micro blogging? to answer this question, here's a little benchmarck from the article of Danny Sullivan entitled: URL Shorteners: Which Shortening Service Should You Use? There is here a comparison of 15 shortening services and is based on seven criteria, namely:

1. The type of redirection (HTTP 301-302-final or temporary)

2. The possibility of tracker urls (for statistical purposes, for example)

3. The basic length of the URL (http://xxx.yy/)

4. The length of the variable part (identifier),

5. The ability to customize

6. The opportunity to share the url

7. The total length of the URL.

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