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Short URLs: Short and Sweet!

Keeping web addresses short can help to make long URLs more memorable.

Go Service

WebServices is now offering a service called "Go" to meet this need. Go URLs work similarly to URL shortners like bit.ly and tinyurl.com. They require no approval and can be set up in seconds. You can create as many aliases as you wish (provided the name is not already taken), and this service is free.

Vanity URLs

A Vanity URL is a shortened URL (such as brown.edu/big) that redirects to a different website. Brown formerly issued only one such redirect per department, office, or center due to the overhead involved in maintaining them. Now, single Vanity URLs will continue to be provided for new BrownSites for free, and supplemental redirects are available for a recurring fee of $100 per year.  

All new redirect requests are subject to the Vanity URL service fee, with the following exceptions:

  1. each BrownSite includes a single Vanity URL at no cost;
  2. a single Vanity URL may be issued if the target of the redirect is a cloud-based service that is critical to the University mission and has no web presence on Brown's web servers.

If you would like a Vanity URL, please follow the request process. Vanity URLs are subject to multiple approvals and take between 3 and 5 business days to implement.

Subdomains for Servers

Subdomains (subdomain.brown.edu) are only issued when a URL must be hosted from a new server. If you have a new server that meets this requirement, please follow the request process. Multiple approvals are required for new subdomains, the approval and implementation process typically takes 3-5 business days.

Within Your BrownSite

Internal path redirects are for departments that require shorter URLs (typically for external marketing purposes). WebServices can enable you to more easily create short URLs within your BrownSite. When combined with a Vanity URL, you could have any number of brown.edu/vanity-url/path-redirect. If you are interested in this, contact us.