Setting Up Custom Link Shortening With Bit.ly

Bit.ly allows you to have nice shortened links instead of hard to remember long links. For example, instead of linking to this post which would be https://piotrkrzyzek.com/setting-up-custom-link-shortening-with-bit-ly I could give you a shortened link like: http://cklph.com/ZqPrno.

As you can see, that is using a my own domain address (cklph.com) and not bit.ly. I'm going to show you exactly how you can have the same with your own short domain in a few steps. Other than the cost of the domain, it's free!

  1. First you need a spare domain name. I recommend getting something short and related to your brand. For example, our company name is Chykalophia Group so we have ‘cklph.com' as the shortened version of the name. If your company or project name was Acme Widgets Co maybe you could have something like acme.wi or something. Make it short (4-5 characters max)!
  2. Create a Bit.ly account, if you don't have one already. Go to http://bit.ly and create a free account. If you already have one, you can use that. If you want one specific for your company, brand or project then create a new one.
  3. Setting Up Custom Link Shortening With Bit.ly 1
    Click on the settings menu item from the top right corner. Click on the down-arrow next to your username once logged in. And then click on Settings.
  4. Setting Up Custom Link Shortening With Bit.ly 2
    **Navigate to the ‘advanced' settings screen. Or to be easy, just click here to go there directly: https://bitly.com/a/settings/advanced
  5. Setting Up Custom Link Shortening With Bit.ly 3
    Click on ‘Add a custom short domain' to start the process.
  6. You will then be asked to add your short domain. So .. add it. For us, we put ‘cklph.com' into the box.
  7. Now it's time to get your hands dirty and name some changes! Hope over to the place where you bought your domain. For us, we recommend NameCheap.com as it's reasonably priced, no crazy hard sells, easy to use and amazing support. Then you need to follow the instructions from Bit.ly which tell you to change the DNS settings.

Setting up your DNS

Only do one of the following:
Set your DNS A Record to make your custom short domain point to 69.58.188.49

If you are using a subdomain for your custom short domain, set a CNAME in your DNS record that points your subdomain to cname.bitly.com

Once you do that, head back over to your bit.ly page and click on ‘Verify'. It will only take a few seconds and it'll see everything is working fine.

Once it's set, you have to do one last step: enable the custom domain as the default in bit.ly.

Go to the advanced settings screen, then select your new custom domain from the dropdown menu:

Setting Up Custom Link Shortening With Bit.ly 4

And that's it! Congratulations on setting up Bit.ly with a custom domain (for free!).