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What Is a Vanity URL and How to Get One

So, what is a vanity URL? 🌐

In a nutshell, it’s a customized link that can help you direct traffic to your site, while also being memorable and brand-friendly.

👉 To help you understand how these vanity URLs can benefit your website, we’ll discuss:

By the end of this article, you should be clear on how and when to use vanity URLs for your website.

Let’s begin. 🚀

What is a vanity URL? 🌐

The Computer Dictionary defines a vanity URL as “a domain you register for the sole purpose of having your own domain so you can have an easily remembered URL and e-mail address.” [1]

This is a great starting point, but it’s not the clearest of definitions.

To add to this definition, it’s first important to understand what a URL is.

In essence, a URL (Uniform Resource Locator) is the location of a specific website or page on the Internet.

On the other hand, a vanity URL is a version of a URL that’s easy for your audience to remember. This may be the original URL of a specific website or page, but it’s often used to redirect to a page with a more complicated URL (more on that later). In fact, some experts use the term vanity URL only to refer to URLs that redirect. In this article, though, we’ll be using “vanity URL” to describe any short, memorable URL.

You can create vanity URLs on your own website (we’ll show you how to do so below) and claim vanity URLs on social media sites like Facebook.

👉 Take a look at the TED talks’ Facebook URL:

TED Facebook homepage.

This URL is short and matches their brand name, making it easy for fans to find and connect with them online. In other words, it’s a vanity URL.

Benefits of using vanity URLs ✔️

There are four main benefits to using vanity URLs:

1. They’re easier to share and remember

Unlike generic URLs that can be filled with lots of numbers and other characters (which are hard to remember), a vanity URL is typically short, simple, and directly related to the content.

This makes it easier for users to recall the URL and in turn, reduces the likelihood of errors when manually typing the address or sharing it verbally.

In addition, vanity URLs help to add a professional touch to our websites.

Instead of having a URL like this: “”, you can change it into: “”, which looks a lot more professional.

2. They help you redirect traffic

Vanity URLs can also be a great way to help you redirect traffic to your original URL.

When someone clicks on or enters a vanity URL into their browser, they’re automatically sent to the longer, original URL.

For this reason, these custom URLs are commonly used in branding and marketing efforts. For example, a company might use a vanity URL in an advertisement or on social media to direct people to a specific webpage, like a product page or promotional offer.

3. They can improve user experience

If your website features a diverse range of products or services, vanity URLs can help your website visitors reach specific pages with ease, and as a result, improve their user experience.

👉 For example, let’s say you own an ecommerce store and sell different types of bags. You could create vanity URLs for the different categories of bags you offer:




With this approach, your customers can go straight to the page they are interested in, instead of searching through your whole website. This not only saves time, but also enhances the user-friendliness of your site.

4. They can help you track your marketing efforts

Vanity URLs make it easier to track and analyze marketing efforts. This is because you can customize them for specific campaigns.

This means that conversion rates, user demographics, click-through rates, and other analytical data can be attributed to specific URLs and in turn, offer a granular understanding of what resonates with your audience.

For example, let’s say we had a website page for a new product with the URL: “”

As you can see, this URL may be more challenging for our website visitors to remember. So, instead of sharing this type of URL, we could create a vanity URL like: “”

5. You can potentially improve your SEO

Standing out online can be very challenging in this day and age, that’s why having a solid SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy is so important. One of the key components of SEO is the use of keywords.

With vanity URLs, you can incorporate some of your keywords into your URLs. This can help search engines understand the type of content your website provides and may help you rank higher for those specific keywords.

For example, let’s say you own a sports apparel store and want to target the keyword, “tennis shoes,” you can create a vanity link like “” and, in this way, this specific page may rank for users who’re looking for tennis shoes.

Challenges of using vanity URLs 🧐

Above are some of the incredible benefits that come with creating vanity URLs for your website. However, there are also some potential drawbacks you should be aware of:

  • Availability. Securing a meaningful vanity URL can be challenging, especially if the desired term is already in use or has been reserved by someone else. This limitation may force you to consider alternative names that may not be as aligned with your branding.
  • Tracking multiple URLs. While vanity URLs can help in tracking marketing efforts, managing multiple custom URLs across various campaigns can quickly get confusing or overwhelming.
  • Lack of consistency. Maintaining consistency across various marketing channels and campaigns may become challenging when using different vanity URLs. If this isn’t done properly, inconsistent branding could confuse your audience.
  • Social media restrictions. Some social media platforms have character limits, making it challenging to use longer vanity URLs. Additionally, certain platforms may have restrictions on customizing URLs. For example, YouTube channels can’t get vanity URLs until they’ve existed for 30 days or reached 100 subscribers.

Careful planning and ongoing management of your vanity URLs can help you navigate these issues and maximize the benefits of using vanity URLs.

How to create a vanity URL 🧩

Choose the right domain name

Choosing the right domain name for your vanity URL involves several key steps:

1. Ensure the name is memorable and relevant to your brand

Think about a domain name that mirrors your brand identity or reflects the purpose of your website. Opt for something that’s easy to remember and pronounce – the goal is to make it a breeze for users to recall so they can have a positive browsing experience.

2. Think about your keywords

Consider incorporating relevant keyword/s that describe your business or content for that page. This not only helps with your SEO efforts but also provides clarity to users about your page’s focus.

3. Check for the name’s availability on social media

Before purchasing your domain, remember to also check social media channels to ensure that no one is using the name you want.

This is because not everyone has a website for a particular business or brand. Some startups may be selling through social media platforms. They may have built a name for themselves on those channels, without a website.

To avoid any confusion, spend some time checking all the social channels to ensure that no one else is using that name.

👉 If you find that another brand is already using a name you’re interested in, you can try:

  • Using an abbreviation of that name
  • Adding a region to the end of the name
  • Adding a keyword that relates to your company

Once you’ve registered the name you want, remember to open up social media accounts using that name to ensure that you own it across all the channels.

Shorten the URL if necessary

Earlier, we highlighted the importance of creating an easy-to-share, read, and easy-to-remember vanity URL. One way to achieve this is through having a short and simple URL.

👉 If you’re having trouble here, there are multiple tools that can help you. You can use:

After shortening your URL, remember to test it out to check if it’s working properly before sharing it with your online community.

Vanity URL best practices and usage

👉 Here are a few things you want to do to maximize the benefits of any vanity URLs you create:

  • Choose a URL that aligns with your brand.
  • Keep the URL short, simple, and easy to remember, avoiding complex combinations of words or excessive characters.
  • Maintain a consistent brand by using the same or similar vanity URL structures across different campaigns/platforms for a unified brand image.
  • Regularly monitor the performance of your vanity URLs using analytics tools. If campaigns or content changes, update the vanity URLs accordingly.
  • Ensure that the chosen vanity URL is available and not already in use by another entity. Verify its availability through domain registration services and search the name on social media sites to see if it’s in use.
  • Incorporate relevant keywords in your vanity URL to improve SEO.
  • Given the prevalence of mobile browsing, ensure that your vanity URLs are mobile-friendly and easily accessible on various devices.

By following these best practices, you can create and use vanity URLs that not only enhance your brand’s online presence but also contribute to a positive user experience and effective marketing campaigns.

What is a vanity URL: final thoughts 🏁

Using vanity URLs can be a great way to improve your branding, marketing, and user experience.

💡 But, in order to choose the right URLs, you’ll need to consider a few things, like:

  • Do I need a vanity URL?
  • Is the URL I’m creating simple and easy to remember?
  • Will the URL be consistent with my online brand?

Once you’ve created the right vanity URLs, you can use them enhance your user experience, improve brand awareness, and drive targeted traffic. As a result, this can be great for your overall digital marketing campaigns.

Want to learn more about how to achieve your marketing goals through clever use of URLs? Check out our guide to URL masking. 📚