Main WordPress Website is Blocking Yourls Shortener
If you’re reading this, I assume you’re either a) a WordPress ninja or b) one of the many people who’ve been blocked from accessing their blog or website on WordPress’ TOS (Terms of Service). This post will give you the skinny on why, and how to fix it.
Why Are You Being Blocked From Shortening Your Links On WordPress.com?
This is a question we get asked a lot. Let’s examine the reasons why you’re being blocked from using short links on WordPress.com:
1. Short links are a new feature on WordPress.com
As of last year, WordPress.com introduced a new shortlink feature. With short links, you can create links that are much shorter than the typical 34 characters allowed by most blogging platforms. This is a great feature for users who want to create short videos or images to feature on their site. Instead of having to go through an assistant to shorten a link, you can do it yourself with a click of a button. This also means you can create shorter links to share on social media.
WordPress.com provides a wealth of tools and functionalities for bloggers to build their site. One of the most popular features is the ability to create customized 404 pages when your blog or website goes down. Another feature that’s particularly useful is the built-in analytics tool which tracks all the activity (readings, clicks, and subscribers) on your website.
2. Short links are considered “spam” by WordPress.com
WordPress.com considers any form of spam to be bad for the platform. While they don’t outline exactly what constitutes spam, they do say that it includes unsolicited commercial messages and any content that doesn’t contribute to a “healthy conversational environment.”
So why are you being blocked from using short links on WordPress.com? According to the platform, your use of short links is considered “spam” and “aggressive marketing.” To be clear, this doesn’t mean your content is marked as spam or that your blog will be deleted. Instead, it means that you’ll need to make some changes to continue using WordPress.com.
3. Short links are a violation of the WordPress.com TOS
In addition to blocking you from using short links, WordPress.com also prohibits the use of “stingy” or “nearly invisible” links. Essentially, you can’t make it so that someone (usually a robot) has to click on your link to get to the content. As a result, you’ll have to include some sort of visible text or image in your link so that users know where they’re going. For example, [Blog article]:
How to Build a WordPress Blog that’ll Actually Make Money
If you want to create a legitimate and profitable business around WordPress blogging, then you need to follow the “golden rule” of making sure that your readers can’t get away without reading the content you’ve put out. To do this, you need to make sure that every article, podcast, or whatever you post has a clear and immediate call to action (CTA). A CTA is something that encourages the reader to do something, whether it’s buy a product, subscribe to a service, or visit a website. For example, let’s say you’ve written an article about the top beauty trends for Summer 2022. One of the best ways to encourage people to read your article is to put a call to action at the end of it that says something like:
- If you’re planning on purchasing any beauty products during the next 12 months, then this would be the article for you
- Subscribe to our mailing list to receive weekly beauty tips
- Or, if you’re looking for a digital marketing agency that can help you grow your blog, then visit our website to learn more
You can use an HTML anchor tag or a button that links to a specific page on your site. When you do, you’ll be able to track clicks and leads in Google Analytics which you can put to good use.
4. Short links are difficult to rank in search engines
If you want your content to be found, you’ll need to make sure that your links are not only visible but also indexed by the search engine spiders. To do this, you need to put in the time to build up your site’s domain authority (DA). DA is a measure of how trustworthy and relevant your website and blog content is in the eyes of the search engine spiders.
If you’ve got a healthy amount of DA, your content will appear in the results when someone searches for a topic related to your blog or website. In the example above, someone searching for “skinny jeans” will be able to click on our result and learn more about our blog’s topic – denim items.
If you want to know more about building a website with a focus on reaching people through organic search, then check out our full organic SEO guide. It contains everything you need to know about optimizing your site for organic search results on Google, Bing, and other search engines.
5. Short links can reduce the usability of your site
The last thing you want to do if you’re trying to create an enjoyable experience for your site’s readers is make it difficult for them to navigate. To avoid this, you need to make sure that every part of your site is as easy to find as possible through a combination of tags, headings, and visual cues.
For example, let’s say you’ve written an article about the best skincare products for oily skin. If you’ve linked to an image of a specific product in your article, then that image should appear next to the relevant text in the search results. When a reader clicks on that image, they’ll be taken to your article with the information they were looking for.
If you’ve got a lot of competition in your niche, then building authority and getting your content in front of as many people as possible is critical to being able to stand out from the crowd. However, you don’t need to rely on other people to read your content for you. You can use tools such as Google Keyword Planner to determine the popularity of specific words or phrases and use those to your advantage. For example, if you’re doing hair-related content and you notice that “hair transplant” is a popular search phrase, then you can incorporate that into your content to draw more people in.
How to Shorten Your Links on WordPress.com
Now that you know why you’re being blocked from using short links on WordPress.com, you can start to fix it. The first step is to locate the link that’s throwing off the platform – we’re assuming it’s the one that’s blocking you from using short links. Once you’ve got that, you can replace it with an HTML link.
Replace each instance of that link with an HTML link.
The second step is to create a new permalink structure for your blog. What is a permalink structure, you ask? A permalink structure is the address of a specific blog article or webpage. We’ve gone over this in more detail in a previous blog post, but essentially, a permalink structure gives your blog or website a memorable address when someone links to it. For example, if you’ve got an article about the best workout clothes for men, your permalink structure might be:
- “how to build a workout clothes empire”
- “22 smart tips to improve your workout clothing style”
- “the best workout clothes for men”
The structure above gives your blog the ability to be easily found by anyone who’s looking for content on the subject of workout clothes. It’s also easy for you to remember where you wrote about the topic because the structure is made up of short, snappy words. In addition to being easy to remember, these permalink structures also make it easy for Google to find your content. You can’t control how people will use your content; you can only control how you use it.
Should You Use Short Links On Your Blog?
Like any other tool, there are both pros and cons to using short links on your blog.
On the one hand, short links are a great way to make your content easily discoverable. We’ve gone over how to build a workout clothes empire above, and it wouldn’t be difficult for a reader to find this content even if they didn’t know what a permalink structure was.