How to Shorten Links and Analyze Their Stats is a great little free tool that allows you to shorten long URLs such as affiliate links so you can more easily insert them into emails, tweets and such. also allows you to track your clicks as well.


Step 1: Shorten Links

When you log into your account, you’ll see a box as shown below where you enter the long URL that you’d like to shorten. Simply enter the long link and click the “Shorten” button.


Below the box you’ll now see a shortened link as shown below.


Copy & paste this short link on your website, social networking sites, email or any place you want to share it.

Step 2: Custom Link

If you don’t like the look of the shortened link, you can create a custom link. To do this, click  “Customize” next to the generated short link. Enter the letters/word you’d like to use for the link & click the “Customize” button as illustrated on the page below.


If the link is available, it will be updated. If someone else has already used that customized set of letters or words, then you’ll have to choose a different word/letter combo.

Once you have a unique letter/word combo, your new link will generate.

Copy & paste this short link on your website, social networking sites, email or any place you want to share it.

Repeat for each link you want to shorten.


Step 3: Short Domain & Tracking Domain (optional steps)


With the Pro version of, you can enter a short domain and a tracking domain. To do this, in the upper right corner, next to your username, click the down arrow and select “Settings”.


Custom Short Domain

A custom short domain is used in place of the domain when creating short links For instance, if you owned the domains and you could enter here and your shortened links would look like rather than

Just enter the short domain into the box and click the “Add Short Domain” button.

Note: Adding a custom short domain requires you to edit your DNS settings before it will work.



Tracking Domain

This will allow you to gather data on how your domain is being circulated across the web. If you own the domain and set it as your dashboard tracking domain, all of the redirected traffic to would show up in your stats.

You simply need to enter your root domain and click the “Add Tracking Domain” button.


You’ll then be asked to verify your domain one of three ways…



Step 4: Sidebar Bookmarklet

bitly8 has a sidebar bookmarklet that allows you to tweet, watch your stats and see who is talking about the linked page on Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed and blog comments right from your browser’s sidebar.

To set this up, navigate to the upper right corner next to your username & click the down arrow and select “Shorten Everywhere”.

The page will show you an outline of how the bookmarklet will look. At the bottom of the page, there’s a yellow box that tells you to drag the link to your browser toolbar to get started.

If you already have links set up in your dashboard, once the bookmarklet refreshes, you’ll start to see your stats.

You can add your Twitter and Facebook account details so you can quickly post directly from this bookmarklet.

You can find similar tools that work pretty much the same on this page:


Step 5: Reading Stats

Once you’ve had your links published to the web for a while, you’ll be able to view your stats. To do this, log into your account and click “Analyze”.



The Metrics Summary will give you a breakdown of your stats in graph form for the past 30 days, as shown below.



That’s it! You can now easily use short links and track the stats for each one.