Since we announced the bit.ly Pro service last month, we’ve been racing to keep up with the demand — thousands of companies and bloggers have already signed up, and we are getting new requests every day. To help everyone get up and running as soon as possible, we’ve decided to move to an open beta: we’re going to launch a self-service website next week. Publishers will be able to log in there and set up their accounts in a matter of minutes.
In the meantime, we’ve put together a FAQ to answer your questions and let you know a bit more about the product. In addition to the free service, we’ve been working on the bit.ly Pro enterprise edition, which we’re currently testing with a handful of organizations, including The Onion (onion.com), The New York Times (nyti.ms), and Pepsi (pep.si). bit.ly Pro will have two tiers: the free version, and the enterprise edition, which will be a paid subscription service. The FAQ begins with the features of the free service:
What features are included in the free bit.ly Pro?
- Whitelabel service for a custom short URL, with up to 10,000 shorten requests a day.
- The bit.ly Pro dashboard, which rolls up analytics about the most viral content from your domain.
- The bit.ly button, which lets users share articles on Twitter or Facebook from your site, using your custom short URL.
What features are included in the Enterprise edition?
The paid service includes the following:
- custom short URLs, buttons, and dashboards for multiple domains.
- advanced dashboard features, including additional analytics and 3rd-party application support.
- end-to-end branding — if you shorten a link at bit.ly, or use bit.ly on a Twitter client such as TweetDeck, you’ll notice that when you shorten or share an article from theonion.com (for example), it will resolve to an onion.com short URL instead of a bit.ly-branded URL. This will result in both greater transparency for end users about link destinations and in millions of additional brand mentions for publishers in the bit.ly stream.
- a customer service and support plan.
Won’t some end-to-end publisher domains be longer than bit.ly?
Yes, though we recommend that publishers use very short domains. Note end-to-end branding will not be a feature of j.mp. So if users want to ensure the shortest possible URL and are indifferent to exposing underlying brand, then they can use j.mp either by navigating to the j.mp website or by selecting that option in most Twitter clients.
What do I need to set up bit.ly Pro?
To sign up for either version of bit.ly Pro, you need three things:
- A registered bit.ly username.
- A short domain that you own and manage, for custom URL shortening.
- The domain that you wish to monitor in our real-time dashboard.
You can sign up here for the bit.ly Pro service. If you’re interested in reselling or distributing bit.ly Pro, please contact email@example.com.
How much does bit.ly Pro cost?
bit.ly will not charge for the custom domain service or the basic dashboard. They will be free products. Free means free. But it also means that we can’t provide a lot, if any, support service (i.e. phone support, etc.) under the free plan. Pricing for the enterprise version will be announced in the coming weeks.
What about my existing short URLs created under bit.ly or j.mp?
All of the statistics associated with your bit.ly or j.mp username will be preserved under your bit.ly Pro account. Once you have a custom domain setup under bit.ly Pro, those hashes migrate seamlessly to your custom domain (i.e. if you created the URL http://bit.ly/1234 under your existing username, under bit.ly Pro, the URL http://mycustom.domain/1234 would redirect to the same destination with the same statistics when you look at the associated info page).
Are there any changes to the API for bit.ly Pro?
Once a custom domain has been configured for your bit.ly Pro account, domains shortened under the associated username and API key will now shorten URLs with your custom domain. You do not need to change your API key.
What is the difference between the dashboard and existing bit.ly URL statistics that I get to when I add a “+” to a bit.ly URL?
bit.ly tracks the real time social distribution of any given URL. That’s the data you see when you add a “+” to a bit.ly URL. The Pro dashboard rolls up that data for your domain and provides aggregate real-time statistics from the past 24 hours.
Can we have multiple users on each account?
There is a one-to-one mapping for bit.ly usernames and custom domains for bit.ly Pro. If you wish to have multiple custom domains for each of your brands/web properties, you will need to register a different username for each.
Will my custom domain work with 3rd-party tools?
Once a custom domain has been configured for your bit.ly Pro account, all 3rd-party tools that allow you to enter your bit.ly username and API key will now shorten URLs with your custom domain.
Do you have any guidance on how/where to select/research/obtain short domains?
The most important decision for bit.ly Pro is choosing and purchasing a good short domain to match your branding. We strongly suggest the domain name be kept to 5-6 characters. Check out this list on Wikipedia of all of the top-level domains and get creative. Click on the desired TLD on the page to find out the restrictions and available domain registrars. Few people will ever type these domains - instead they will be created via the API, shared, and clicked. Hence, the branding of your short domain should focus on being visibly recognizable - abbreviations and msspllngs lk remvng vwls wrk prtty wll. There’s a scarcity of characters in Tweets and SMS, so every character saved grants you more ability to annotate your message. We do not acquire domains for users.
3 years ago
Thanks for your patience while we make bit.ly Pro awesome.