Over the last week or so, Facebook users may have noticed that the images connected to their links are considerably larger after publishing a post. In a recent announcement, the social giant confirmed that it has made these new large images standard for all posts links are shared in.
Although the company admitted to striving to improve the visual aspect of storytelling, it could also boost engagement and increase click-through rates in the process. A picture is worth a thousand words, but one could argue that those in link share posts were batting less than 500. Until recently, images were reduced to the size of a thumbnail. Nothing is for sure, but if users can better comprehend what they’re reading in a post, chances are they’ll want to know more and click to find out.
While the size change is officially in effect, users will have to follow a certain protocol in order to make sure their links are represented by high-quality images. Facebook cited 1200×627 pixels as the most optimal size and recommended 560×292 pixels as the minimum. These dimensions will produce a huge image that essentially acts as the link users can click to further explore the content on another site.
Content Marketing Benefits
Users who post and interact with links on Facebook will certainly benefit from having larger images to work with, but this update offers something for content marketers as well. In addition to organic posts, the new standard also impacts event ads, offer ads, Page like ads and Page post link ads. If an ad promoting a novel or software product is showcased in bigger and bolder fashion, users may be more likely to interact with it. Larger images will undoubtedly increase the visibility of paid content, but whether they boost clicks and overall engagement is something that remains to be seen.
In the case of larger post link images, Facebook can’t make any guarantees, but content marketers do have market research on their side. Econsultancy took a look at three case studies to determine if larger images truly do lead to better clicks and conversions. The overall consensus was a resounding “yes.” In what looked to be the most impressive example, this tactic helped social template maker Profile Pimp boost immediate click-throughs by 135 percent, while delivering 51 percent higher earnings per click.
From the looks of it, both users and content marketers have a reason to appreciate this latest Facebook’s update.
Photo credit: Flickr