December 15, 2012

10 App URL Schemes for Marketers

[Updated on 12/15/12; originally published 5/28/12]
App URL schemes aren’t just for app developers; they can also turn ordinary web links, email links, or QR codes into powerful app-aware links. Smartphone and tablet users respond to app-aware links because they create a more seamless mobile experience and reduce friction (no one likes hunting for app icons and re-entering login credentials).

Here are the 10 most important app URL schemes you need as a marketer to mobile-optimize your brand’s iOS and Android experience. In most cases, deep links can be created to launch the brand profile directly inside each app.

Note: To try these on your device, visit this page from your smartphone or tablet (shortlink or scan the individual QR below. If the app isn’t on your device, you’ll see an error message. If the app is installed, it’ll auto-magically open.

#1: Facebook’s App URL Scheme:

Facebook App Icon for iOS Android fb://App-Aware Facebook QR Code



#2: Twitter’s App URL Scheme:

Twitter App Icon for iOS Android twitter://App-Aware Twitter QR Code



#3: Foursquare’s App URL Scheme:

Foursquare App Icon for iOS Android foursquare://App-Aware Foursquare QR Code



#4: Google Plus’ App URL Scheme:

Google+ Plus App Icone for iOS Android mgc://App-Aware Google Plus QR Code



#5: YouTube’s App URL Scheme:

YouTube App Icon for iOS Android youtube://App-Aware YouTube QR Code



#6: Google Maps’ App URL Scheme:

Google Maps App Icon for iOS Android comgooglemaps://App-Aware Google Maps QR Code



#7: LinkedIn’s App URL Scheme:

Linkedin App Icon for iOS Android linkedin://App-Aware LinkedIn QR Code



#8: Pinterest’s App URL Scheme:

Pinterest App Icon for iOS Android pinterest://App-Aware Pinterest QR Code



#9: Groupon’s App URL Scheme:

Groupon App Icon for iOS Android groupon://App-Aware Groupon QR Code



#10: Yelp’s App URL Scheme:

Yelp App Icon for iOS Android yelp://App-Aware Yelp QR Code



  1. At the very least the linkedin:// scheme does not work anymore!

    • Brian

      Thanks for the comment Michael. LinkedIn’s URL scheme has always been a bit frustrating and finicky … and varies by platform. In our tests, the LinkedIn URL Scheme does work (currently) on iPhone 4/5 and iOS6 in general, but not on Android, sadly. The good news is that for iOS users, LinkedIn has enabled deep-links to connect users directly to your LinkedIn profile, say via a QR code, using the following protocol: linkedin://profile/{id} where id = your personal ID not a company ID. This is promising news and I’m glad LinkedIn decided to use a similar convention as Facebook for allowing deep mobile links. Thanks again!

  2. This is the first time I see Pinterest url scheme that is not “pintint12″.
    I tried it and it does open the App. But what are the parameters it uses? How do I point to a specific board or user?
    Didn’t find any information on google.

    • Brian

      Thanks for the comment Yariv. Glad you find it useful! Pinterest has one of the more intuitive and better designed URL schemes around. Basically you can append the mobile web page URL pathway to the pinterest:// url scheme and the deep link just works (in most cases).

      To deep link a specific pin, the URL scheme to use is pinterest://pin/{id]/ For example, pinterest://pin/148759593912957064/ links to a pin on my board.

      To deep link to a user, it’s pinterest://user/{handle}/ For example, pinterest://user/bsklais deep links to my profile.

      Pinterest does not seem to support deep-linking into a user board. You’ll see that trying pinterest://user/{board-name} or even just pinterest://{board-name} generate app errors.

      Good luck!

  3. Daniel

    Can you share how you created the shortened URL for Facebook’s App URL Scheme?
    I want to create a link where I can direct users from an Android application to our Facebook page.


Submit a Comment

Current ye@r *