Don’t you hate it once you try to post a link in a Facebook post, and the image in the preview ends up looking like this: Boring. Where’s the image, right? It’s said 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 about metadata such as your website’s DNA – coded information that determines how a network like Facebook sees the web pages on your site. And just like DNA, in the event you alter the information in this code, link preview wordpress will spot those pages in a different way! If you want your Facebook links to appear just like possible, then you’ve gotta recognize how certain parts of your metadata work. We’re gonna cut through all of the technical details and provide you with the short version of what matters inside your metadata, so that you can make certain your Facebook link previews generate those beautiful images you’re looking for each time!
Which means the a part of your website’s metadata that we’re centering on is Open Graph meta tags. Here’s how it all works! What are Open Graph meta tags, exactly? By definition, Open Graph “enables any webpage to turn into a rich object in a social graph.”
OG tags are what allow Facebook to consider a boring ol’ URL and transform it right into a beautiful link preview. Link previews are more eye-catching and clickable than plain URLs – by providing your link a graphic, title, description, and much more, you’re providing people with the contextual information that’ll make them wish to click. (As these days, link trust is one of the most essential factors when you’re looking to get traffic from social media.)
OG tags live in the code for each and every page and post on your own website. Here’s what they appear to be for that update above (we highlighted the text that matches various parts of the link preview): Previously, this has been about as complicated as it got – however in 2017 and 2018, Facebook makes changes to how you can share a link on Facebook, including how link previews and tags work. (Long story short, it’s mostly related to fighting the spread of fake news – which is a very good priority, even though it will make things like this a little more involved.)
Facebook wants to make sure that it only pulls by far the most accurate information when generating link previews plus an image preview, which explains why it generates the previews it displays in news reports Feed using information it gathers from your site’s metadata. At the time of 2018, Facebook is building a slight tweak to when and exactly how it pulls that information – and it impacts if your previews generate properly.
In their own individual words: “When content is shared the first time, the Facebook crawler will scrape and cache the metadata from your URL shared. The crawler must see an image one or more times before it can be rendered. Which means that the very first individual who shares a piece of content won’t visit a rendered image.” Translation: whenever you add a link in a Facebook post for the first time, Facebook hasn’t yet cached all the details it needs to generate a preview – therefore, Facebook can’t create the image preview you hkxnmf until someone shares your link a second time.
Fortunately, there are two ways you can get around that. Here’s what you should know: How to share a hyperlink on Facebook. The first strategy is to add an additional bit of information to your OG tags: the height and width of the image preview you would like 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 desire, even the first time a link is shared.
Not into coding? Not a problem – there’s another choice. The next technique for making certain your link previews work is to apply Facebook’s Sharing Debugger. The Facebook debugger is definitely a handy tool. When you plug a URL into this tool, it pre-loads every piece of information Facebook needs so that you can produce a link preview later on. Facebook stores that info, then once you get around to really sharing the hyperlink, they’re in a position to generate the preview – even the very first time you share it.