How and Why to Use Bitly - A Guide

Welcome! This blog-post explains briefly what URL shorteners do (Bitly specifically), why you might use one, and additional resources at the bottom of this post.

A bit on URL's:

In a very generalized definition, a URL is just any web-address that you type into your Browser, to reach any online Website and generally follows the format:

What Bitly does:

Essentially, Bitly allows you to take a long URL or 'Link', and make it shorter. Take for example, this link from the Blog:

Bitly turns this longer link into:

Though the link looks different, it funnels people to the same place online, and take up much less digital space.

Why to Use Short Links (short URLs)

Some social platforms (Twitter for example) only give users a limited amount of characters to write their posts, and long links take up unnecessary space.

Bitly is also a helpful organizational tool for storing a number of websites in one spot online, which users can access from any internet connection or mobile app - anyone that posts a lot of links to social networks may find it helpful.

Use Bitly without an Account:

If you prefer not to sign up for an account at with Bitly you can still go to their Homepage at and enter any long URL you like to receive a custom Bitly one - They have a URL Shortening Tool directly on their Homepage - near #2 in the example image below.

How to Sign Up for a Bitly Account:

1) Go to
2) Click Sign Up - located in the image above next to the #1
3) Use Your Account of Choice to Create an Account - My example uses Twitter

Enter your Username and Password if you selected either Facebook or Twitter respectively to authorize Bitly for an auto-setup. Or you can also enter your Email information.

Account Overview Once Signed In

1: Paste your long URL's here
2: Click here to share your link to Twitter, Facebook or send via Email. After clicking the share button a window will appear to let you customize your post

3: Click here to 'Edit' the Properties of your Bitly Link
4: Click here to Archive your Bitly Link
5: Click here to copy your Bitly Link to your clipboard - It can then be pasted elsewhere
6: Displays the privacy settings of your Bitly Link
7: Displays statistics relating to your shared Bitly Link
8: User settings
9: Click any of these to organize your Bitly Links, check link statistics and others users in your network

One of many Cool Features:

One easy feature to customize your links in Bitly, is by clicking the 'edit' button and changing the ending of any of your created URLs

In other words, taking this faux short-link for example: - Bitly gives you the option to change that highlighted part at the end of the link, into whatever you want provided its not taken by someone else online - URLs need to be unique to work. So if the link above, connected to to a blog article about protecting Rainforests for example, you might change the ending of that Bitlink to or whatever else you might think of. To make this edit with any of your Bitly links simply click on the 'Edit Link' button from your Account overview page.

I hope this post was helpful and if you have any questions, please feel free to comment below. Otherwise Happy Holidays to all - Cheers!

Other Helpful Links and Related Web Pages / Services

Mobile Applications


*Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of the websites or companies listed in this post, which is intended for educational purposes. Thank you :)

Saving Web Pages for Later - Instapaper & Other Online Link Warehouses

This blog post takes a look at online link storage websites, who they are, what they do and how to use one of them specifically (Instapaper).

Have you ever been looking for something online and inadvertently come across a website by accident that has absolutely nothing to do with your current task, but would be great for later? Websites like Instapaper exist solely for the purpose of letting you save those web pages to an online warehouse, which you can return to later so that you can continue with your current task. In my own experiences exploring the many link storage websites out there (find a small list at the bottom of this blog post) - I found that was the most user friendly, works with a huge variety of other websites, has no storage limits and easily shares to just about anywhere.

Essentially it lets you hand pick the best websites you come across and save them to one place. It's a useful way to ensure that you always have relevant and engaging content to share.

How do you save links or other content to your Instapaper?

Instapaper works with lots of applications (140 iPhone, iPad & Android apps) which makes it a very useful and versatile storage tool that works with most major websites.

To Add Instapaper to your Chrome Browser

From Your 'Chrome' Browser (Click Here to Download Chrome), Instapaper makes it quite easy. They have a Chrome Extension you can upload from the Chrome Store, or you can simply drag and drop their 'Read Later' button to your browser tab from this page:

Once your 'Read Later' button is installed in your browser tab, you can just click that 'Read Later' button at any time to save the web page you're currently viewing.

Add to Instapaper via Email: When you sign up for an Instapaper account, they give you a personalized email address. You can then send or Forward emails to your Instapaper address, where they will show up in your feed to read later.
*Note: I'm not certain how well email attachments transfer to Instapaper, though I know you can easily create an IFTTT Recipe to mitigate this or just about any other issue imaginable. For more on the IFTTT website try their about page, here

Versatility & Compatibility:
One of the best things about Instapaper is that it works with a large variety of common Websites I use everyday. One site that works particularly well with Instapaper is Feedly, a great RSS organizer, though there are many others. Once Instapaper is set up as a Favorite or Bookmark on your iPhone or iPad you can save any site you're on directly from Safari, even tweets and articles attached to them.

Who Might Find it Helpful?
Anyone who does a lot of web surfing. Both as a hobby and professionally I'm in a constant search for interesting content, but as many Internet marketers have experienced, each social platform has different audiences and those audiences (followers) should be expecting a certain type of story from your account - and in my case this expected content does not overlap. For example, cute kitten pictures might work great on your Facebook account, but look weird on your Twitter, where you might consistently share content marketing links, or maybe political links for example . Instapaper is a great way to save websites which you may want to come back to later, so that you don't have to lose that ridiculously cute kitten picture for Facebook that you just accidentally came across, just Instapaper the website and use it later :).

For more concise information you can also check out Instapaper's Blog on Tumblr, or sign-up for a free account on Instapaper right now at

Instapaper is not the only link storage website out there, though it's currently my favorite. Check out any of links directly below to experiment with other sites which may work better for your Internet needs and please don't hesitate to ask any questions if you get stuck anywhere, I'll help where I can. I hope this web post was useful and that you have a wonderful rest of your day!

Other Online Link Storage Sites:
Yahoo Bookmarks

Further Reading:

I would also recommend the blog: Digital Inspiration for a list of useful bookmark and websites for your iPhone/iPad - Found at this link:

*Disclaimer: I do not work for, nor am I affiliated with in any way, the company - or any other companies listed in this blog post - just a fan.