Don’t you hate it once you attempt to post a web link in a Facebook post, as well as the image within the preview ends up looking like this: Boring. Where’s the image, right? It’s meant to be there automatically! This all comes down to metadata. Which, admittedly, doesn’t sound like a very exciting topic. It affects everyone, though – including you!
Think of metadata like your website’s DNA – coded information that determines just how a network like Facebook sees the web pages on the site. And merely like DNA, in the event you change the information in this code, link preview will discover those pages in a different way! If you wish your Facebook links to appear as good as possible, then you’ve gotta understand how certain areas of your metadata work. We’re gonna cut through all the technical details and give you the short version of what matters within your metadata, so you can make certain your Facebook link previews generate those beautiful images you’re trying to find each and every time!
Which means the a part of your website’s metadata that we’re focusing on is Open Graph meta tags. Here’s how it all works! What are Open Graph meta tags, exactly? Obviously, Open Graph “enables any web page to turn into a rich object in a social graph.”
OG tags are what allow Facebook to adopt a boring ol’ URL and transform it in to a beautiful link preview. Link previews are definitely more eye-catching and clickable than plain URLs – by providing your link a graphic, title, description, and much more, you’re providing individuals with the contextual information that’ll make sure they are desire to click. (As these days, link trust is among the most significant factors when you’re trying to get traffic from social media marketing.)
OG tags live in the code for each page and post on your website. Here’s what they appear to be for that update above (we highlighted the text that matches different parts of the link preview): Previously, this has been about as complicated because it got – nevertheless in 2017 and 2018, Facebook has made changes to how you can share a link on Facebook, including how link previews and tags work. (Long story short, it’s mostly linked to fighting the spread of fake news – which is actually a pretty good priority, even when it can make such things as this a little more involved.)
Facebook wants to make certain that it only pulls probably the most accurate information when generating link previews plus an image preview, which is why it generates the previews it displays in the News Feed using information it gathers from your site’s metadata. As of 2018, Facebook is creating a slight tweak to when and just how it pulls that information – and it impacts whether your previews generate properly.
In their own individual words: “When content articles are shared the very first time, the Facebook crawler will scrape and cache the metadata from the URL shared. The crawler needs to see a graphic one or more times before it can be rendered. Which means that the very first person who shares some content won’t visit a rendered image.” Translation: once you give a link in a Facebook post the first time, Facebook hasn’t yet cached all the information it must have to produce a preview – therefore, Facebook can’t create the image preview you hkxnmf until someone shares your link an additional time.
Fortunately, there are 2 ways you can get around that. Here’s what you should know: How to share a link on Facebook. The initial technique is to incorporate an extra part of information to your OG tags: the height and width of the image preview you want inside the link preview. When you add og:image:width and og:image:height in your existing Open Graph tags, it gives Facebook adequate information to create the picture preview you want, even the first time a web link is shared.
Not into coding? Not a problem – there’s another choice. The next method for making certain your link previews work is to use Facebook’s Sharing Debugger. The Facebook debugger is an extremely handy tool. Once you plug a URL into this tool, it pre-loads all the details Facebook needs to be able to produce a link preview in the future. Facebook stores that info, and after that when you get around to actually sharing the hyperlink, they’re capable of generate the preview – even the 1st time you share it.