The primary use of such a url is to make it easier for your readers to click or to comply with chat services and sites like twitter. If you go to Amazon.com and find a really nice item you want to share with your friends a long url is difficult to copy.. its also unpleasant to deal with so taking a few seconds to pass your url through a forwarding website is not a lot of effort.
If you are a bloger then you may be using a url shortener service to generate automatic tweets of posts. This is a good idea but can leave you without important website statistics that can let you know which campaigns are attracting visitors to your site and what content needs to be changed.
The Google URL Shorener Service goo.gl has the ability to take that next jump in statistical information collection and surpass all other services out there.
What Could Google Do?
Since most websites have adopted Google Analytics in addition to the standard httpd log features available from hosting services it makes sense that Google could allow the use of a private key in their API which would link the URL shortening Service to a Webmaster Tools Account.
In this way incoming links would preserve the information necessary for improving our sites and if Google will eventually allow statistical information to be viewed the site owner is the primary consumer.
If implemented the key would need to be passed through API this is not the type of thing that you want an end user typing into a browser form every time they want to tweet a pic of their new dog.. but once plugins are developed website blogers would simply write their content and everything would work in the background.
Obviously it would be nice to know when our readers also make links into our sites and that statistical information would be available on a person by person Google account… but it may be interesting to find out where our in links are coming from so Google could preserve that information for viewing inside the webmaster tools account for the destination site while not releasing the original link makers information.
Anyway for now if you want to give it a try you need to be using the chrome browser or visit the new webpage http://goo.gl and enter your links manually…