Code Sage, a local digital media marketing agency in Zimbabwe has introduced a link shortening service that will add so much power to the sharing experience of online content via shortened links.
When most people share links of websites stories, Facebook pictures or any other content online, an automatic long web address is created to link the actual file to its source, this link is often too long depending on the content managing system of the source file.
By Toneo Tonderai Rutsito
The link is technically termed the Uniform Resource Locator, or URL in short and also known as a global web address of files and other resources on the World Wide Web.
It becomes impossible for anyone to remember the full link of any file forcing people to actually copy , paste and send the link as is to maintain accuracy in the file sharing experience.
Speaking on the launch of the application, Code Sage managing director Mr Gwinyai Nyatsoka said, “As a digital media marketing agency we aim to encourage local companies and individuals to use digital media marketing tools and to appreciate their advantages. Short links are one such tool which can positively benefit companies using social media and email marketing.
We felt it would be much easier to encourage the use of short links with something we developed. It works and functions just like any other short link application such as bit.ly or Google’s goo.gl but the unique difference we have made is that our short links are much shorter than those of competing brands. ”
The short link application works by taking in any normal URL and converting it into a shortened version. A shorter URL leads to far much greater social engagement because people can more easily share short links and find them more aesthetic than long URLs. Short links also have benefits in email marketing in that they do not set off spam filters as easily as long URLs do. This optimizes delivery rates for people sending emails in mass with URLs being used in the content.
Code Sage has gone a step further in announcing that it will also be allowing companies to have their own custom branded short links. Branded short links have an advantage over conventional short links in that they lead to much greater brand awareness as the link axtually has the one`s company name.
Internationally, large entities such as the Entrepreneur’s magazine and Forbes use this as part of their online strategy and Code Sage is offering such a local solution for companies to have their own.
Technically there are genuine fears that most these urls are meant to divert traffic only to their servers but with basic checks, most of these services offer a mutually beneficial permanent redirect which finally directs traffic to the destination website without them acting as the destination.
Since the shortening service uses a technology called the URL 302 permanent redirect it will not affect Search engine optimisation or Google ranking. This means that the final destination of the URL is what Google robots or any other search engine robots will consider at the end of the day.
Google`s Matt Cutts states that almost all shorteners are going to use a “301 permanent redirect” to move the page to the appropriate destination, and that Google will treat any links to that 301 redirect as being a link – for the sake of pagerank – to the destination. That destination page will also receive the “social promotion” bump for any friends/followers of the original tweeter.
Gwinyai said “As for code sage, we would benefit if marketers use our short link service http://cod.sg in that it advertises our brand by virtue of the fact people may come to interpret cod.sg as Code Sage in the same way people will interpret goo.gl as Google or entm.ag as Entrepreneur’s Magazine. However, this service is free of charge. “
They only charge when you want your own custom URL and the reason for this is because there are costs in getting a TLD for your custom short URL, the hosting of the TLD and of course programming the scripts to ensure they work only for you.
The benefits of short URLs are many! For email marketers they are short and simple and do not trigger spammers, seeing your email ending up in a spam box or getting ignored. For social networks like Twitter, they are magic since its all about short and precise messages. They are also great in that they are proven to create more engagement than long URLs because they are more human readable and aesthetic.
They also help in knowing how your content is being shared. For example, if you shared an article across Twitter, Facebook and email, a short URL for that article will help you know how many clicks you got for it across all online channels as it also promotes higher brand awareness of the company using it