Best URL shorteners [2018]

URL shorteners

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Nobody likes long ugly links, but if you’ve been around the internet for a longer time, you’ve definitely come across URL shorteners and if you’ve been following the news in tech industry lately, you’ve probably also heard about Google shutting down their link shortener.

There’s a plethora of alternatives available online that all have a wide variety of features, but how to choose the best one? How to know which one is the right for your business and will suit your needs best?

I’ve come up with 7 best URL shorteners (in no particular order) that would benefit any freelancer, agency, business or just anyone looking for a way to shorten their links. is a very simple alternative to or Bitly and doesn’t have any advanced features (unless you sign up for premium), but it’s still a good option if you’re looking for a free link shortener. Even with a free account, you get 500 links, which you can edit and organize by tags. also has a QR code feature.


This one is probably one of the most basic URL shorteners available, but it’s still good and gets the job done. It’s a free service without any extra features except for previews. This is a good option if you’re looking for a URL shortener for personal use, but I wouldn’t recommend this for businesses because it just lacks few very important features that other URL shorteners have by default.

A very handy feature they have is adding tinyURL to your browser’s toolbar.


Bitly is probably one of the most well-known URL shorteners (and also one of the oldest). Their service is really easy to use, you can customize the links and even view statistics about clicks and sources if you have a free account.

They do have a paid version with more features like branded short URLs and lots of API integrations, but they don’t put their pricing on their website.


Rebrandly is a link management system that specializes in branded links. You can use their service for free and get up to 1000 branded links or upgrade to Smart and get 5000 branded links only for 29$/mo. They also have other features that they don’t put that much emphasis on like advanced link tracking and editable destination URLs.

In order to use link shortener, you have to register on Hootsuite, which makes it the perfect URL shortening tool for social media managers who already use Hootsuite for work. The free version of Hootsuite gives you access to, but in case you need more features, you can choose to upgrade. is very similar to tinyURL and just as easy to use. is a completely free service, yet their links are permanent and never expire, you can even make custom branded links and even has geo-location statistics.


Capsulink is a bit less-known, yet surprisingly good URL shortening service. They offer branded short links, in-depth analysis, private statistics, QR codes, password-protected links and so much more, yet most of these features are paid. Capsulink’s free account offers an unlimited amount of short links, basic statistics, lost link statistics and a few other features.

A special feature they have is smart URLs – links that redirect the customer based on their language, device, time zone etc. It’s a handy feature if you want to deliver personalized content to your customers and overall improve your marketing (you can read more about it in this blog post).

Key Takeaway

There are a lot of options you can choose from when searching for the best link shortening service, including the 6 services I mentioned above. I’m sure you will benefit from using these services just as much as I do as they dramatically improve your marketing game.

Which ones have you tried and which ones you like the most? Are you sad about shutting down or it doesn’t bother you at all?

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