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Business Operations Business Models

How Does Bitly Make Money (Business and Revenue Model)

The Bitly business model

How Does Bitly Make Money?
Here’s what you should know:
  • What is Bitly, and how does Bitly work?
  • How does Bitly make money?
  • Subscription Revenue (Bitly Enterprise)
  • Bitly Subsidiaries, Acquisitions, and Exits
  • Bitly profit and revenue
  • What is the Bitly business and revenue model?
  • Bitly funding and valuation

How does Bitly make money if it’s free to use? Here is a full, in depth, breakdown of their main revenue stream and services they offer, as well as the Bitly business model, their profit and revenue, and how Bitly works.

What is Bitly, and how does Bitly work?

Bitly is a URL shortening and link management service that allows users to create and track the performance of their short URLs known as bitlinks.

Founded in 2008, Bitly went on to get acquired by Spectrum Equity for $63 million on July 10, 2017.

Since that time, Bitly now has more than 5 million monthly active users creating over 600 million Bitlinks each month.

How does Bitly work? To create Bitly links, users must first sign up for an account by either heading over to their website or download the mobile app on the Apple Store or Google Play.

Once an account is created, users can start making up to 50 links per month for free by entering in the long URLs and UTM Parameters (Optional); and then naming the bitlinks. From there, they can paste the links anywhere and track their performance within Bitly.

Some of Bitly’s competitors include Linktree, TinyURL, and other URL shortening services.

Bitly App in Apple App Store | Bitly Business Model | How Does Bitly Make Money? | How Does Bitly Work?
Source: Apple App Store | Bitly

How does Bitly make money?

According to Bitly, Bitly has more than 5 million monthly active users on its platform. Of those, over 325,000 are paying customers.

So how does Bitly make money off of all those users?

Below is a breakdown of how much money Bitly makes and its revenue model. Including their main revenue stream and how much they charge for their services.

Here is how Bitly makes money (in 2022):

Bitly has a revenue model that makes money in just one (1) way; subscription revenue.

#1. Subscription Revenue (Bitly Enterprise)

Though Bitly offers a freemium tier to its users, Bitly makes all of its money by upselling its users to its paid subscription plans.

As noted above, Bitly has over 5 million monthly active users on its platform. Of which are more than 325,000 paying customers; including some notable brands such as ESPN, Disney, The New York Times, BuzzFeed, and more.

Bitly offers three (3) tiers for its paid subscription service; Basic, Premium, and Enterprise. All of which offer their own set of perks and added features that the free version does not have such as branded links, scannable QR codes, creating more than 50 links per month, and more. You can see how much Bitly costs below.

Bitly Pricing:

  • $35 USD to $300+ USD per month depending on the plan
Bitly Pricing | Bitly Business Model | How Does Bitly Make Money? | How Does Bitly Work?
Source: Bitly

Note: Bitly has over 325,000 paying customers.

Bitly Subsidiaries, Acquisitions, and Exits

Aside from Bitly being acquired by Spectrum Equity for $63 million, Bitly has had its own fair share of acquisitions as well.

To date, Bitly, Inc. has made a total of 1 acquisition.

Bitly Acquisitions | Bitly Business Model | How Does Bitly Make Money? | How Does Bitly Work?
Source: Crunchbase | Bitly

Bitly profit and revenue

Bitly has not released any official reports in regards to company earnings.

Note: Because Bitly, Inc. is a privately held company, they are not required to make their annual reporting, such as Form 10-K’s, pubic.

What is the Bitly business and revenue model?

Bitly makes money through a few revenue models that they combine within their company, they are:

  • Freemium (Upselling) business model
  • Subscription business model
  • B2B2C (partnerships) business model
  • Mergers & acquisitions (M&A) business model

Bitly funding and valuation

According to Bitly’s Crunchbase profile, Bitly has raised $94.4 million over 7 rounds.

Bitly was acquired by Spectrum Equity on July 10, 2017, for $63 million.