Dave Winer writes today regarding TinyURL’s recent downtime and what it means for the web:
Now that URL length has become an issue for users, it might be even better for designers to view URLs as part of site design. Look at the address for the page for the Wii at Amazon. Wouldn’t it be easier to find if the address were:
Try clicking on it — it actually works!
Why should a user ever see the longer crappy url?
In other words, url-shortening isn’t just for Twitter users, it’s for everyone. Maybe most people don’t look at the urls, but some do, and maybe more would if they made more sense?
Imagine if web developers would start taking link optimization into account along with search engine optimization. As Winer points out, long link strands are increasingly becoming irrelevant as most people just go to Google if they need a link they can’t remember and click from there.
However, if you’re selling a product or a service, how valuable is it that the link to that product or service have an increasingly easy format and structure for users or customers to remember? Perhaps not valuable for all merchants or advertisers… but potentially very valuable for many.
Expect to hear more about link optimization as the web grows up and grows out to mobile.