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I’m sure by now you’ve noticed a handy Facebook feature – when you post a link in a status or comment, Facebook automatically generates a big, clickable preview image that makes it easy for readers to click that link.
This automatic preview image can be a great tool to drive visitors to your site and bump up engagement rates – but only if the preview image is appealing and relevant.
It’s possible to customize which image is shown as a link preview with a bit of coding, but you can easily get the same result with an essential WordPress plugin – Yoast!
How to Customize Your Site’s Facebook Image Preview
Yoast is a free WordPress plugin that boosts your site’s SEO rankings. I recommend that you spend some time exploring all of the features that this awesome plugin has to offer, but for now, we’ll just be focusing on adjusting the image preview. If you run into any problems setting up Yoast, head over to their support center for help.
Once you have Yoast installed and have followed the setup wizard, it’s time to customize that preview image! Start out by finding the Yoast logo on your WordPress dashboard sidebar menu, and click on Social:
Once you navigate to the social page, enable Open Graph metadata. You can also select a default image to show if there are no other images on a page to display. Pick an image to upload that is 1200 x 630 pixels. I suggest using Canva to create a branded image for this purpose! Once you’ve enabled Open Graph metadata and uploaded your first image, save your settings. Your social tab should look something like this:
Next, you’ll be uploading a preview image for each page of your website that needs a custom Facebook preview image – which pages you choose is totally up to your discretion.
Navigate to your desired page through your WordPress dashboard. Now that you have Yoast installed, there should be a dropdown menu that looks like this:
Again, I highly recommend that you spend some time getting to know all of the amazing features that Yoast has to offer, but for now, click on the social sharing icon under the traffic light on the left menu.
From here, you can adjust the title, description, and preview image that show when someone links to your page on Facebook. I don’t typically set different titles and descriptions for my pages, but I do have a custom preview image for each page of my site. I recommend having a custom preview image for each page to help increase clickthrough when you post your links on Facebook.
Once you’ve created the 1200 x 630 pixel image that you’ll use as your preview image, upload it under Facebook Image. Voila! A custom Facebook preview image for this page of your site.
To test your image, head to this Facebook developer tool. If all is well, you should see your specific title, description, and preview image for your page.
Remember to repeat this process on each page of your site (blog posts included!) that needs a custom preview image.
That’s it! You’re officially armed with the skills needed to customize your site’s Facebook image preview. Got comments or questions? Have an idea for what you’d like to see next on the blog? Drop it in the comments below!
As always, if you need any assistance with this or other social media snags, please feel free to contact me directly and I’ll do my best to help.
Until next time!