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Monday, June 27, 2011

Short, memorable links for your Intranet

Any organization with more than a few employees probably gets to a point where it starts putting up posters for upcoming events and other new things. These same organizations probably have web pages which describe whatever is happening on those posters, and like so much of the web, there are long and ugly URLs to go with it.

Trouble is, when someone is out walking around, they might remember a short and pertinent link name, but that's about it. Also, there's no guarantee of your target audience having a phone or camera or whatever on them at that very moment. Not all of us have pockets every day! That means you can't simply rely on bar codes, or NFC geekery, or whatever. Nope, you need something they can remember and type in later.

How about something much simpler? Instead of sending people to http://www.example.com/signups/2011/summer-picnic, send them to something short, simple, and memorable:

go/picnic

That's it, and it's so much nicer. Also, a year later, you might recycle that same short link for that year's summer picnic even if it's at some totally different URL. Clever users will come up with all sorts of ways to benefit from this.

I've created a service which does exactly this. Check it out!

Go

It's called "go" for now, but that name is subject to change. If you find it interesting, or hate it, or just want to say something in response, hit the "send feedback" button from the Go Manager page and let me know. Thanks!