Sep 14. • 3 min read
Have you ever tried to post a link to Facebook with a beautiful image, and you got a boring line of text instead? This is a link preview, and Facebook makes it relatively easy for you to fix it so that it displays what you want. Photographs engage your audience much better than plain links, so it’s important you know what Facebook’s Link Preview is and how to edit it.
The issues with Facebook Link Preview all come down to metadata. Think of metadata like your website’s DNA. Facebook uses these DNA pieces to decide how to display your links. If you change the information that makes up your metadata, Facebook will see different things. We’re focusing on your website’s Open Graph (OG) meta tags.
Why Open Graph Meta Tags are Important
Open Graphs are the part of your page that turns boring links into links with pictures, headings, and a description. It’s a preview of your full page. You have to know how to perform link preview editing since Facebook changed the way you share links in 2018 in an effort to combat fake news and clickbait.
Basically, when you share a link to your Facebook for the first time, Facebook’s crawlers have to go in and pull the metadata to come up with the Facebook Link Preview. This means that Facebook won’t generate this preview unless someone shares the link a second time. However, there are ways to get around this.
How to Edit Open Graph Meta Tags
As we mentioned, there are two ways in which you can perform link preview editing. The first involves opening your Open Graph tags and manually inputting og:image:width and og:image:height. This gives Facebook the information it needs to turn your preview link into a photograph link.
The second option is to use Facebook’s Sharing Debugger Tool. All you need to do is load your URL into the Debugger and let it pre-load all of your Open Graph tags and relevant information for you. Facebook stores this information, and will generate a Facebook preview link the first time you post it.
Choosing a Template and Size for Your Facebook Preview Link
If you want to post your link straight to Facebook itself, you can pick which image you’d like to use as a link preview. Facebook will pick several images and pull them up in a row. It’ll highlight them as tiny images at the bottom of your Publish box.
You can then deselect any images you don’t want to show in your Facebook Preview Link by clicking on each one and removing the highlight. You’ll see the blue outline vanish. If you only have one in your set, this will be your post image. If you keep more than one, your users can scroll through them as a carousel of images.
More Information on the FB Link Preview
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