Google URL shortener

May 13th, 2015 by Monika Jankowska-Pacyna

URL_shortenerGoogle URL shortener is a quick and simple to use tool that lets you shorten, share and track how many times someone clicked on your shortened URLs in real time. It is useful when you are sharing website links with learners or trying to promote a website and the link is simply too long.

Although it is possible to create short URLs without being signed in, we recommend that you create or use your existing Gmail account and sign in every time you want to generate a new short link. It will allow you to keep a history of all the URLs you have created in the past and track clicks on each link. If you are not signed in, the same short URL is reused each time a long URL is shortened by you or someone else.

Creating a short URL without being signed in:

  1. Copy the long link you want to shorten. We will use: http://alphaplus.ca/en/training/webinarsgroup1/webinars-schedule.html

  2. Go to https://goo.gl/ and paste the website you want to shorten into the Paste your long URL here field 

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  3. Check off the I am not a robot field. You will be asked to enter the captcha text. If it’s too difficult, use the circular arrow to generate a new captcha. In our case, we had to enter Rua and click on Verify.

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  4. After you confirm that you are not a robot, click on Shorten URL

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  5. A new, much shorter URL is created. It even includes a preview of the web page. You can simply copy the shortened link and share it with others.

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Creating a short URL when signed in:

When you create a shortened URL while signed in, goo.gl will track how many times someone accessed the link, where they came from, and even what browser they used.

Creating shortened URLs is even easier when you are logged in. You simply need to enter the long URL and then click the Shorten URL button. There is no need to do captcha. The page will also display information about all the short URLs you created in the past:

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When you click on Details for each link, you will get more detailed information about the clicks, referrals, browsers, countries and platforms used. All the data is interactive. For example, we were able to find out that the link below was accessed not only by users from Canada and the US, but also by someone in the UK and someone in Australia.

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To learn more about Google URL shortener, visit https://goo.gl/uHBPyp