URL Shortening is a technique where provider makes a website visible under a very short url. URL shortening is a kind of URL redirection, which is used in pranks, Affiliate Link hiding, and phishing. When the first URL shortening “TinyURL” was introduced, it influenced the creating of at least 500 similar websites. They are offering now the same function for the internet users. The use of these services are now increasing day by day, but before going to use these services you must know about these services. Although URL shortners has advantages but it has also some disadvantages.
Pros of URL Shortners
1. Make short URLs from long URLs
2. Since they are not understandable, thus you can use to hide your affiliate links.
3. Track visitors for a specific post or URLs.
4. Twitter allow only 140 characters. In this case you can shorten long urls into short urls to post more text.
Cons of URL Shortners
1. These URLs are not understandable and thus there is less chance of being clicking.
2. It can be use for spam
3. It can take more time to load the page.
4. In case the URL shortner stop there service, all the links shorten through that website will stop working.
5. A short URL obscures the target address, and as a result it’s sometimes used to redirect to an unexpected site
6. In some countries some URL shortners are block. For example TinyURL is blocked in Saudi Arabia. Thus Saudi Arabia users can not access URLs shortened by TinyURL.
This is my personal recommendation is to not use URL shortners on regularly basis. OR use a reputable and trusted service in order to minimize reduction in traffic. I don’t want to say that don’t use any URL shortner but try to use these URLs for short term works. It will not work for long term plans.
You may lose traffic from the shorten URLs if the provider suspend your account OR the entire website is down. In this case the shorten URLs will not redirect users to your required page. Thus the traffic to the page will be lost.