One of our core values at Bitly is being customer-first—fiercely committed to our customers’ success. We often chat with Bitly users like yourself to better understand your needs and how we can improve our product to help you achieve your goals. In our thousands of interactions, one request keeps coming up: the ability to redirect any link.

What is a Link Redirect?

When you redirect a link, you change its destination from one URL to another.

For example, if you have a Bitly link, say bitly.is/latest-post, that points to a blog post you released in May, you can change that same link to point to a new blog post that you released in June. 

Moving forward, whoever accesses the original short link will be directed to the new blog post.

Bitly supports the ability to redirect any link or QR Code. This means you can change the destination URL—the page a visitor sees once they click on the link—for any short link within Bitly. This includes “bit.ly” links and branded links created with a custom domain.

Why Redirect a Link?

Correct a destination error

Sometimes, you might paste in the wrong URL when shortening a link. Instead of creating a brand new link, you can simply correct the original one by editing the destination URL. For example, say you created a link pointing to an FAQs page but you really wanted it to point to your About Us page. To make matters worse, you’ve already shared the link via email to customers. 

Instead of sending out another email with a new link, you can redirect the original link to point to the right place. This is also valuable if your website itself changes, say yoursite.com/aboutus is moved to yoursite.com/main/aboutus. Updating the destination will ensure your visitors are always pointed to the most up-to-date page.

Update to a new destination

There are a number of reasons why you might want to update the destination of a link over time. For example, you might want to update the destination of a QR Code every few months to point to a new seasonal offer. Change the destination, but keep the same QR Code and the short link associated with it.

Many of our customers create Bitly links for their social media and digital marketing campaigns, and they use UTM parameters to track link and visitor information. If you ever need to change the parameters associated with a link, you can do it easily without changing the short link you’ve already shared.

Manually expire old links 

We’re always working to ensure that any Bitly link you create remains active. But if a link you created is no longer valid for you—for example, if you’re running a limited-time promotion—you can manually change its destination. After all, some links are only meant to be active for a certain period of time. You can change the destination of that link when that time has passed. 

For example, you might use a Bitly link in printed collateral to promote an upcoming event. After the event is over, you can redirect that short link to your homepage or any error page rather than the event registration page. 

View link configuration history 

Every time you redirect a link, we keep track of the previous destination URL and the clicks associated with it. This means you’ll be able to see when the different destinations were active for a particular Bitly link, as well as view the clicks associated with past destinations.

Are you ready to get started with link redirects? To redirect any link, upgrade to a paid Bitly plan.

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