Link shorteners: the long and short of why you shouldn’t use them
Some link shorteners claim to provide you with analytics. Social media platforms tell you how many clicks you received and provide a click-through rate - you don't need a third party tool like a link shortener to find that out. Did you know that some link shorteners add tracking cookies to users' devices, which then trace their activities around the web? And if you didn't know, do you think the people who are following your channels, and clicking your shortened links, do? Using link shorteners also creates accessibility issues. It's one of the other reasons we advise against using link shorteners in GDS's Social Media Playbook. If there's widespread use of gobbledygook shortened links we could be inadvertently contributing to users being socialised to click any type of link. GDS provides the option to you to request a shortened version of a full GOV.UK URL. If your campaign microsite is not on the GOV.UK domain, your digital team or agency supplier should be able to easily create a shortened version for you that doesn't compromise on the integrity of the domain name, or link content.