The power of the vanity URL

Vanity URLS in technical PR
You might have come across the term vanity URL being uttered by mysterious SEO types, often in conjunction with phrases like ‘social media outreach’ and ‘online branding’.

But what are the benefits of a vanity URL and what, actually, are they?

A vanity URL is a social media URL that replaces the random string of characters after the www.linkedin.com/ or www.facebook.com/ with something intelligible. For instance, the URL of my LinkedIn account is http://uk.linkedin.com/in/technicalpragency and the URL of my Facebook page is http://www.facebook.com/technicalPR. You could just as easily choose /airbearings, /MagneticCoils or /SCARARobots.

The principle benefit is that, for instance, www.facebook.com/PrintedCircuitBoards will rank much better in Google for a related search term than a sting of random letters and numbers. Furthemore, the links from that page to your Web site are coming from a much more clearly relevant site.

In addition, there are other obvious benefits, such as being able to remember your Facebook URL when someone asks! It also creates the possibility of using a LinkedIn or Facebook page as a microsite in a marketing campaign.

You can get a Facebook vanity URL for your company page by logging into the site and then visiting http://www.facebook.com/username/. You can do the same in LinkedIn by signing in and clicking here http://www.linkedin.com/myprofile?editwp=&locale=en_US. In Twitter, you can select a vanity URL by changing your username.

Remember though, if you already shared your social media profiles all around the net, you will need to go and update many of them if you change the URL. Facebook pages though will continue to re-direct the old URL to your new one.

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Richard Stone

Stone Junction is a cool technical PR agency based in Stafford. We work for all sorts of businesses, with a particular focus on technology, technical and engineering companies. We like being sent cake and biscuits by clients, journalists and prospects.

3 comments:

Vanity Phone Number said...

A vanity URL is a nice marketing strategy that a company can consider the same way a vanity telephone number is utilized.

Vanity Phone Number said...

A vanity URL is a nice marketing strategy that a company can consider the same way a vanity telephone number is utilized.

Industrial Training said...

A good tip, we have been using vanity urls from the getgo, so can support your SEO value comment too. See http://www.facebook.com/Electrician.Engineer.Industrial.Training for example.
You can also do it with other social networks like ...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/manufacturing/
http://reliability.ning.com/
http://www.google.com/profiles/BIN95.Industrial.Training