As of 2020, over three billion people are currently using social media. And you, genius, know that within the population are people who could be your customers or regular audience.
But getting noticed amidst the flood of posts is practically impossible without the right tools. And now, I’m going to give you an honest review of Shorby, which is an Instagram marketing tool, so you can find out if it’s meant for you.
In this Shorby review, you will learn all that this marketing tool can do, how to make use of its features, and its pros and cons.
Social media is extremely useful to businesses, marketers, and website owners, but unfortunately, most of the time, their features aren’t very accommodating.
Take Instagram, for example. It’s not too far-fetched to say that, most of the time, this app is where business links go to die. Although its content is mainly image-based, there’s no way to share your links under posts.
I mean, unless you have a verified business page or you’ve managed to rustle up ten thousand followers on your Instagram business account.
But, who has time for that? You need views, clicks, and sales now!
And how do you make up for the lack of exposure? Shorby can help with that. I’ll explain how.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links and I may earn a commission if you make a purchase through my link. Thank you.
What Does Shorby Do?
You could say that Shorby is a URL shortener. That’s what it was known for when the first version came out. However, it’s evolved and become a tool that you can use to somewhat bypass some social media’s restrictive policies.
The Shorby of today is a tool that helps you revamp your bio link. That is, you can use Shorby to create a bio link where you can include several other links to your business.
Creating smart and efficient Instagram bio links is one of the most popular things Shorby does.
Why Is This Important?
Why is having a refashioned bio link important?
I’ll answer this question for the new bloggers, affiliate marketers, and other online business owners out there who may not yet understand the power of social media.
As a business owner or someone who’s steadily producing content intending to make an income, you need your website to gain exposure.
Social media’s a great place to market such content, especially Instagram, which has over 500 million people active every day.
But, you can’t put links under your posts on Instagram. The only place you can post links is in your bio, which people won’t see as often.
And you’re only allowed to have one link in your bio. This means you’ll have to fit in the entirety of your blog or online business into a link, which isn’t always possible.
But (and this is where Shorby comes in), with a bio link maker that allows you to include other links and descriptions, you can make a link that will have all the information stored within several links.
That is, you’ll have a way to direct your customers to your content, products, or services without breaking any rules.
Now that you know why Shorby’s link in bio is important, here’s my definition of this tool for this Shorby review.
Shorby is a tool that allows users to create a micro landing page to include all their links (affiliate links included) and works from their actual sites. It can also be set up to automatically update content within the landing page to fit the user’s website’s latest content.
While this definition can give you an idea of what Shorby does, it’s probably not enough to explain the entire features of this tool. So here’s a more detailed explanation of its features.
There are three major ways that Shorby can help you get a little more traction on social media.
1. As a URL Shortener
If you’ve been active on the internet for a while, you’ve probably heard of URL shorteners. You’ve probably used one, as well. URL shorteners do just what their name says — they shorten URLs, that is, links.
Some links can be as long as three lines. It’s useful to have a smaller version that won’t use many characters for your social media.
Shorby allows you to shorten a link just by copying it and pasting it. And with the link comes some pretty useful analytics. You get basic click tracking analytics right away. That is, you’ll be able to see how many people have clicked your link.
If you need more detailed information, there’s also tracking pixel support for a couple of popular tools. The tracking pixels give you information about people that clicked your link.
Information like how the visitors browse and what ads they click on will be made available to you. This is invaluable to any marketer because it helps you better understand your audience’s likes and dislikes.
The tools and where you can use this feature include:
- Google AdWords
- Google Analytics
- Facebook Pixel.
2. Create Micro Landing Pages
The ability to serve as an Instagram bio link tool and create landing pages is the biggest Shorby feature and the one that usually answers the question, “How does Shorby work?”
When you use this feature, Shorby allows you to create a micro landing page where you can add an unlimited number of links. This means that you can add all relevant links in one place and put the link to your Shorby page on your bio.
It saves you the stress of constantly changing the links in your bio. Why switch links when you can have all your links in one place?
Shorby’s landing page is customizable. You can choose an image or icon, a title with a subheading, and background colors. Your content and links are also customizable.
You can add any content link that you like, including:
- Price lists
- Links to your social media
- Links to your latest content pulled from any RSS feed.
- Messenger links (More on this in the next feature)
Instagram is an app that’s mostly used on mobiles, and so, these micro landing pages are also customized for mobile phones. This way, your visitors can make a smooth transition between the app and landing page, and you get some beautiful templates.
3. Communicate Through a Link
This last feature works great for people whose business relies on having a one-on-one conversation with the buyer.
Shorby can help with this by creating shortened links that automatically start a live chat, phone call, or email with different services.
You can have this link bare, as in, as just a link (for example, shor.by/amy). Or you can make a hyperlink with customized text like “I’d like more information on this service.”
You can set this up with any supported messenger. They include:
- Facebook Messenger
- Phone call
Don’t forget that you can also add tracking pixels on all of the above apps.
Knowing Shorby’s features is great but learning how to use them is even better. Wouldn’t you agree?
How to Use Shorby
Shorby has a pretty clean interface with everything clearly labeled. If you’re already using this tool, you’ll see some analytics for links or pages you previously created. You’ll also see a rectangular text box for pasting long links to be shortened.
There are also options for the three features we mentioned above. In the same order as the features explained above, you have:
- Short Link
- Smart Pages (the option for the landing page)
- Messenger Links
We’ll learn how to use Smart Pages first because it’s probably the tool that’s most attractive in this entire Shorby review. It’s also the one with the most options and longest process, so it’s best to deal with it first.
How to Create a Micro Landing Page
Shorby’s micro landing pages all follow a basic template that cannot be changed. However, you can decide the content you want within that template. You can also decide whether you want certain elements or not.
The template runs like this:
- Title text/heading with an optional subheading
- Messenger links (these links help to allow customers to reach you through chat).
- Blocks (content that you want people to see)
- Social media links
The starting interface is really clear, with clear labels on everything. There are Settings and Insights buttons on the right and left, respectively, of the spot clearly marked for an image or logo.
Right underneath that is the Title spot, and you can add messengers, blocks, and social links below.
Adding an image, logo, title, and subheading is extremely easy and can be done with just a few clicks and some typing. When you click on Messengers, a box titled MESSENGERS will pop up.
It’ll have symbols of various social media apps with one or two text boxes in front of them.
You should input your account information within them so people can message you directly. For instance, some social media, like WhatsApp, allow you to add text that can be seen within the message in a separate text box.
Next, you should add some Blocks. Blocks can be in three forms:
- Buttons or Card
- Subtitles and text
- Dynamic feed.
If you choose to add a button or card, you get several templates to choose from with different layouts and background images.
These templates also apply to other choices. You can also add a price tag if you’re advertising goods or services.
The second option is the most useful one. A dynamic feed works by taking content obtained by an RSS feed. This means that the content on your landing page will automatically change to accommodate a link to your most recent post.
That means you can show off your newest content automatically. And subtitles and text can be used to divide your blocks clearly. There’s also a drag n’ drop feature to rearrange their order.
Adding social links only requires that you copy and paste the link of your social media accounts in the required text box.
Next, you can head over to that Settings button we talked about earlier. Clicking on it will give you access to color schemes, tracking pixels, and you can even create a new Shorby custom link.
And your landing page is done! Now you can start sharing your new link. Speaking of links…
Creating a Short Link
Click Create > Short Link. Then paste the URL you want to shorten and configure the new link. The basic domain is shor.by/, and you can add whatever text you want after the slash.
However, on higher plans, you can create your own Shorby custom domain.
Shorby automatically tracks analytics for each link you create. You can go further by adding tracking pixels, as mentioned above.
Creating a Messenger Link
Creating a Messenger Link is the easiest task on Shorby. Click Create > Messenger Link.
Next, you choose the service the link directs to, then you’ll fill a short form. Enter the following information:
- The username/phone number to which the message should be directed.
- A customized name for the shortened link.
- Predefined text for services that support it (discussed under “Creating a Landing Page”)
Then, you add your tracking pixels, and you’re done!
We’re nearing the end of this Shorby review, but we can’t let it end without figuring out how Shorby compares to one of it’s biggest competitor, Linktree.
Shorby vs. Linktree
Both Shorby and Linktree work to bypass Instagram’s strict rules against linking by creating a landing page where you can add your links and direct your visitors.
As Shorby’s direct competitor, Linktree has some good stuff to offer, with great customization and analytics being two of its standout features.
However, they did miss some detail with the links.
All Linktree users have to have “linktr.ee” as their domain name. This cannot be changed in either free or Pro versions. There’s also no link shortener, and users have complained about a cluttered interface.
In comparison, Shorby seems more like an all-rounder. It has the analytics, the scheduling, the dynamic feed, the tracking links, the customization, and there’s more to come.
Plus, there’s been news that Linktree links are slowly getting banned on Instagram. And bio owners won’t know until they click their own links or are otherwise informed.
No such word has been heard with those using Shorby in their bios.
For these reasons, I think Shorby is a more reliable option.
Pros and Cons
Shorby Review — Pros
- Very user-friendly.
- Easy to operate.
- Has a link shortener
- Has messenger links for contact.
- Comes with tracking pixels.
- Has option for custom domain.
Shorby Review — Cons
- Relatively more expensive than other popular Instagram bio link tools.
Here are a couple of other link-in-bio tools if you want to do a Shorby review in comparison.
- Thrive Architect
Shorby has three pricing plans. There’s Shorby Rocket, Pro, and Agency.
The Rocket plan costs $12/month billed annually and $15/month billed monthly. For this price, you get five smart pages and all features except dynamic feeds, countdown timer, Google analytics, and block scheduler.
The Pro plan is more full-featured but costs $24/month when paid annually and $29/month in reality. You get every feature and 50 Smart Pages.
The Agency plan costs $82/month on a yearly payment and $99/month. This plan just had more of everything and is expected to be used by companies and organizations.
If you’re still asking, “Is Shorby free?” the answer is no. But, you do get a free 5-day free trial to try out the service and see if it’s worth it.
Shorby used to be sold on AppSumo as a one-time offer, but sadly, that deal is no longer on sale.
Shorby is a great tool with a lot of useful features for people who want to take advantage of Instagram’s abundant traffic. Its main con lies in its relatively high price when compared to LinkTree and some other popular link in bio tools.
But, I don’t think it’s high of a price to pay for a reliable link-in-bio tool that is more complete than its peers. The chances are that the benefits will outweigh the cost soon enough.
If you own a WordPress website/blog, using Thrive Architect as your bio link tool is a good idea.
Thrive Architect is one of Shorby’s alternatives and it’s a WordPress page builder plugin that you can use in creating a landing page containing as many links as you want.
This plugin only costs a one-time payment of $67. You can read my review of Thrive Architect here.