Article

Stefano Pisoni
Stefano Pisoni 17 March 2020

Deep Link vs. Universal Link: Which One is Better?

Are universal link and deep link the same thing? There are some big differences, let's understand them.

Obviously, they are not the same, although there is still a lot of confusion regarding the topic.

And it is also impossible to define which of the two is better. Both have quality and customised systems to better adapt to certain needs.

Let's start by defining the difference between the two.

What is the difference between deep link and universal link?

There aren't many differences between universal links and deep links.

Universal links are a technology specially created by Apple to adapt deep linking to their devices.

According to Apple, universal links are safer and more performing for their needs. Universal links have been implemented since iOS 9 Version and have replaced the normal Deep links.

Universal links have functions very similar to deep links; they differ only in these aspects:

- Deep links use the URI Scheme
- Universal links do not have redirects.
- Universal links are a series of web pages to in-app locations.

For this reason, when a user clicks a universal link, the iOS system redirects the user to the corresponding app page (if installed on the device). In this way the user will view the web page directly from his app, improving the browsing experience.

Despite this implementation, universal Links did not replace deep links using the URI scheme.

Why?

Deep link vs. universal link: the most common errors associated with universal links.

Universal links are powerful, but unfortunately they don't work everywhere yet. Universal links can easily be broken and be disabled! If this happens the user will always be redirected to the website URL until they upgrade their app or reset.

Universal will not work if you paste the link into the browser URL field.

Universal links don't work when entered into Safari. If you copy & paste a deep link into the browser address bar, it will not work.

Universal links are really useful but only if you have already downloaded and installed the app on your device.

Universal Links cannot be triggered via Javascript, unless it happens in the same user action.

Deep Link Vs Universal Link: Joturl’s Solution

JotUrl simplifies the process to enable Android app links (the equivalent of universal links, but for Android) and iOS Universal Links, thanks to a dedicated web interface, and allows you to deep link also when the user doesn't have your app installed, providing you deferred deep linking and attribution thanks to a proprietary technology which leverages a combination of universal links, app links, custom URI schemes and other internally developed tech stuff.

One of the features of Joturl is called app deep link, it has been specifically designed to improve deep linking on all kinds of devices.

By associating this additional option with a tracking link, you can set up your link as you wish to adapt it to your every need.

You can manage the settings for Android, Desktop and iOS and create the customised solution that best suits you. Joturl allows you to associate your deep linking configuration with your personal branded domain, offering you the opportunity to improve views and conversions!

Apps with built-in webviews (Google, Twitter, Facebook, Facebook Messenger, WeChat, etc.) work with Universal Links only when a webview is already open.

In other words, universal inks could not work in-app from the feed or main app views.

To work around this limitation, your tracking links must have an app deep link option enabled and a destination URL that has a universal link behind it.

In this way you can solve the problem and use deep linking more effectively!

Deferred Deep Links

A deferred deep link is a deep link that opens to a specific location within the app, after a user first installs and opens the app on her / his device, or when the app is installed and you have configured the Android App Links / iOS Universal Links.

Get everything you need about deferred deep links flows, attribution of the installations, setup of your custom domains for your deep links, passing parameters within deep links, securing your calls, and much more within the dedicated article on our Help Center.

Ready to become a deep linking expert?
---

Photo by Rami Al-zayat on Unsplash

Please login or register to add a comment.

Contribute Now!

Loving our articles? Do you have an insightful post that you want to shout about? Well, you've come to the right place! We are always looking for fresh Doughnuts to be a part of our community.

Popular Articles

See all
7 reasons why social media marketing is important for your business

7 reasons why social media marketing is important for your business

Social media is quickly becoming one of the most important aspects of digital marketing, which provides incredible benefits that help reach millions of customers worldwide. And if you are not applying this profitable...

Sharron Nelson
Sharron Nelson 6 February 2018
Read more
Top 10 B2B Platforms to Help your Business Grow Worldwide

Top 10 B2B Platforms to Help your Business Grow Worldwide

Although the trend of a Business to Business portal is not new but the evolution of technology has indeed changed the way they function. Additional digital trading features and branding has taken the place of...

Salman Sharif
Salman Sharif 7 July 2017
Read more
What Design Features Does Your Ecommerce Portal Lack in 2021?

What Design Features Does Your Ecommerce Portal Lack in 2021?

If you want to update your ecommerce portal design, study this guide to find out about top features for 2021 and make your portal more advanced.

Roman Davydov
Roman Davydov 9 November 2021
Read more
The 3 Most Important Stages In Your Presentation

The 3 Most Important Stages In Your Presentation

If you want to deliver a presentation on a particular topic and you have to prepare yourself for it you should make sure that you go through several very important stages in order to craft a compelling, persuasive and...

Nicky Nikolaev
Nicky Nikolaev 16 February 2016
Read more
The Latest Instagram Updates and What They Mean for Your Marketing Strategy

The Latest Instagram Updates and What They Mean for Your Marketing Strategy

October has been a busy month for Instagram, with platform updates introduced nearly every week. From easier posting to major developments in video, Instagram is doing everything it can to compete with the likes of...

Rikki Lear
Rikki Lear 11 November 2021
Read more