Have you ever had the problem where you’ve created a great post that you think will gain a fair amount of traction, then decided you need to add it to your social media channels. You Pin it to your Pinterest board, tweet it on Twitter and it’s now time to upload it to Facebook.
But the issue arrives when you copy and paste your post URL into Facebook, which then grabs the post excerpt and image to appear on your Fan Page feed. But hang on, the image has not appeared! This is an issue where you need to debug for Facebook.
It’s grabbed your text content, but you need your image to display. For the life of me, I couldn’t work out why this happens, and I’m still unsure exactly why it happens, but I do have a solution to the problem!
Let’s dive in to see if you’ve had the same issue, and if so, how it can be rectified.
Inserting Your Post URL
This is where it couldn’t be any simpler. When you intend to post one of your blog articles onto Facebook, which is usually when you publish your latest post, this is all you need to do.
Highlight the post URL from the browser bar, and paste it into your Facebook Fan Page. For those that don’t know what this is, your can read more about Facebook Fan Pages here. Basically, it’s a business page for your website or or other online identity.
When you paste this link in the section where Facebook asks ‘Write a post’, it will automatically grab your featured image and the beginning content, and display it in your Fan Page feed. Well, that’s what is supposed to happen!
Sometimes though, the image just doesn’t appear. Now there is a Facebook debugging page which you can use to fix this issue. But you may find that it still doesn’t work.
Here’s what works for me, and I hope it will work for you. Keep in mind that the following method needs to be done in the correct order for it to work.
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How To Make Your Image Appear Correctly
The following method requires the use of the best SEO plugin for WordPress. I’m not going to downplay the Yoast SEO plugin but I had compatibility issues with the theme that I use. If you’re interested, I use Divi theme (Elegant Themes) which seemed to have issues each time Yoast updated their plugin.
So, All-in-One SEO is the plugin I use, and it has a button for debugging your post for Facebook. That makes it easy doesn’t it. To be honest, this is, in my opinion, the best plugin for SEO anyway, as it’s lightweight and simple to setup.
The first thing I’ll do, is place my post URL into Facebook as mentioned earlier (the image above shows this). The reason I do this, is that I cannot debug the post first. Facebook will tell me ‘This URL hasn’t been shared on Facebook before ‘. It’s like I need to get the error, before I can fix it.
When the image doesn’t appear in my Fan Page feed, I’ll remove the link and article. Then a Facebook refresh is required. If you debug your post and paste the link back into your feed without refreshing Facebook, the problem will still persist.
Now you can head back over to your WordPress post where you’ve written your article. Beneath the article, you’ll see the SEO section (assuming you have All-in-One SEO installed). There will be 2 tabs here, ‘Main Settings’ and ‘Social Settings’.
Here’s where you’ll click on Social Settings, and if you so desire, choose a different picture to display as you social image.
Down the list on the left, you’ll see where it says ‘Facebook Object Type’. I believe the default is set to ‘Activity’. Change this to ‘Website’. You can also change this as the default under the All-in-One-SEO settings.
You’ll also see the button to ‘Debug This Post’. Once you click this button, a new window will open in your browser. The new open browser window, is the Facebook debugging page which is doing it’s job on your post. You will see your image appear as it should when pasted into Facebook.
Notice the difference from the first image in step 1.
You can now go back to your Facebook Fan Page and paste the link like you normally would. As the image has been debugged, there should be no image display problems.
Now you can type in your description to accompany the post in your business page feed.
If your image still doesn’t appear correctly, go over these steps and make sure you’ve done them in order.
Facebook requires you to have placed the link before it can be debugged. The Facebook website needs to be refreshed before you can paste the post URL back in.
Do Your Images Matter When Posting
In general, most people are visual by nature and therefore, we’ll pay more attention to an image that pops out to us. How often do you stop to read some written content in your Facebook feed if it’s not accompanied by an image? Rarely I’d say.
Pictures, or even colorful backgrounds trigger an emotion inside of us that make us more alert. We tend to browse past written content, unless there is something special about it to make us stop and read.
When it comes to your featured images (or any other images for that matter), make sure you’re allowed to use them. Many images online can have copyright attached to them, but you can find websites that offer free to use photos.
These are my favourite sites to find free images, where you’ll find no copyright infringement issues.
Some of these sites ask you to offer a Tweet or Facebook mention, but it’s not necessary.
When it comes to featured images, I like to make mine unique. I use a program called Visme to create all my featured images. I can source free to use images within their program, as these free image sites are integrated within Visme. I can then use all their tools to modify and build a unique featured image.
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It can be a frustration of sorts when simple tasks like this can not be accomplished easily. What is supposed to take under 1 minute, can snowball into a half hour task, or longer.
Many new bloggers don’t even know there is an option to debug your post images in Facebook. We all assume it should just work, and often it does.
But like anything digital, things happen and you need to know how to fix them quick. I hope this has helped you in getting your images to appear in your Facebook feed.
If you have any questions or thoughts on how to debug for Facebook, please do not hesitate to leave me a comment below. I will reply as soon as I can!
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The opinions in this article are solely mine, are are not intended to offend or discriminate. All information in this review has been researched on the public domain of the internet.