How to shorten a link (URL) and track it

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z.umn.edu website

Link shorteners such as bit.ly, tinyurl and goo.gl are popular services that take long URLs and create them into shorter links, making them easier to share. The University has a URL shortening service at z.umn.edu. This service has been around for a long time but not everyone knows about it.

When and why use a shortened link?

For print: You should shorten a URL if you are sharing a URL in print. For example, which URL would you rather put in your print publication?


It's easy to remember: If you have University-related content that you will share with a lot of people and it will be around for awhile, it’s an easy way to remember the URL.

In Social Media: You should shorten a URL if you are sharing University-related content on social media sites. Short URL's are easier to read on mobile devices.

Analytics: Track how many people clicked on your link, when and where they are from.



Why use z.umn.edu over other tools?

  1. People will associate the short link with the University and know that it is okay to click on the link. They are less likely to trust another short URL (e.g. bit.ly).
  2. It requires authentication and every time you log back into z.umn.edu, you can view or edit your links and see statistics on them.

Give it a try!

  1. Copy the URL you want to shorten
  2. Log into z.umn.edu
  3. Paste your URL into the Enter the URL box
  4. Optional: enter a custom short URL
  5. Click Shorten the URL
As always, we welcome your questions and comments! Thank you.

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