Google Plans Sunset of Link Shortener, How Will Your Business Site Be Impacted? link shortener

Google launched its link shortener back in 2009, but when March 30, 2019, rolls around the service will be shut down. The closing was announced on March 30, 2018, on the company’s official blog. In the same post, Google announced its much-improved replacement Firebase Dynamic Links (FDL).

The move to FDL comes as the way people use and find content across different devices and platforms has changed in the past decade.

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The solution FDL provides simplifies how users find the content they are looking for as well as how developers, site owners, creators, and marketers make it available.

For small businesses, it will mean being able to easily send your customers to locations within Android, iOS, web applications and even connected devices. And Google says it will be free forever — so that is a definite plus!

Michael Hermanto, Software Engineer for Firebase, writes in the post how things have changed since the link shortener was launched.

Hermanto adds, “Since then, many popular URL shortening services have emerged and the ways people find content on the Internet have also changed dramatically, from primarily desktop web pages to apps, mobile devices, home assistants, and more.”

How Link Shortener Changes will Impact your Business Site

Google says it will sunset most of the features of, but “All of the existing links will continue to redirect to the intended destination.”

The change begins on April 13, 2018, when anonymous users and users who have never used the service prior to March 30, 2018, will no longer be able to create new links through the link shortener console. Google is recommending not only Firebase Dynamic Links, but also Bitly and as possible alternatives if you want to create new short links.

After the 2019 sunset date, any existing short links you still have will not be migrated to the Firebase console, but you can export link information from the link shortener console.

If you are a developer, only projects which have accessed URL Shortener APIs before March 30, 2018, can create short links. If you need to create short links, Google recommends FDL APIs. However, you can continue to call URL Shortener APIs to manage short links until March 30, 2019, at which time the APIs will be discontinued.

Why You Should Use FDL

As a small business, you need to make yourself available on as many different platforms as possible. And these platforms must work together seamlessly so your audience can find you on their mobile devices, PCs, home assistants and more. The Dynamic Links of FDL make this possible.

Photo via Shutterstock

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Michael Guta Michael Guta is the Assistant Editor at Small Business Trends and currently manages its East African editorial team. Michael brings with him many years of content experience in the digital ecosystem covering a wide range of industries. He holds a B.S. in Information Communication Technology, with an emphasis in Technology Management.

2 Reactions
  1. FDL is free forever, or until they shut down the product like they will

  2. Firebase is really meant for developers and is way too complicated for anyone else to be able to use it. If you need URL shortening for your business, I’d suggest checking out other alternatives like Capsulink where you get way more advanced features and detailed analytics or Bitly, which you also mentioned in the article, but it can be very pricey if you only need a few extra features not everything they have to offer.

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