Guest Post: Optimizing Images for the New Facebook Graph Search

DisplayMediaI just mentioned in my post about Facebook Home, that the fine folks at Facebook are always changing things! Graph search launched recently which enables several things such as real text searching on Facebook. With this also comes the ability to optimize your website for Graph Search. Read more about what you can do to optimize your site below.

The new changes to Facebook – known collectively as the switch to “Graph Search” – encompass far more than simply how you search for people, pages, and businesses on the world’s largest social network. While the change to search has been noteworthy, as evidenced by the before and after search screenshots below, the biggest change has been to the way that Facebook prioritizes images.

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According to Facebook, the use of images in the news feed has increased by at least 30% in the last year; 50% of all content now posted on Facebook is visual (pictures, albums, videos, etc). In response to this trend, Facebook has increased the importance of image content. Images are given more space in the news feed than previously, and more importance has been placed on image tagging, descriptions, and connections.

In order for your business’s online marketing strategy to keep up with the latest change to how Facebook operates, you need optimize your images effectively.

Image Size

Since Facebook is giving pride of place to images in users’ news feeds, those images have gotten larger. In order to make sure that your page’s images are displaying properly – and thus, leading users to your page – they need to be larger. Facebook recommends a minimum image width of 552 pixels in order for the image to display properly.

  • Posting images larger than 552 pixels wide is fine.  Facebook’s photo display will automatically reduce the image to fit the user’s screen.  However, it will not expand smaller photos to fit a larger screen – another reason to avoid posting smaller images.

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Tagging and Description

Photos are the primary content type displayed in graph search results, and thus, it’s imperative you start thinking about your SEO efforts within this platform. Since Google already indexes Facebook pages, it may be that images will become more important in Google as well.

In order to get more of your photos to show up in those results, you need to use effective tags and descriptions. Make sure you tag every photo you post with your page name and the location of the photo. If employees, customers, or business partners are present in the photo, you can increase your presence in search results by tagging them as well.

  • Be aware that your business may require individuals to sign a release before photos of them can be posted on a public forum.
  • Use your photo description as an opportunity to add searchable content and relevant keywords to your image, as this can also have an effect on graph search results.

Content Strategy

You know that it’s important to post varied, interesting, engaging content to your social media profiles. That strategy has not changed substantially following Facebook’s update. Rather, you need to shift towards producing that content in a visual format: photos, graphics, charts, diagrams, infographics, videos, and so on. This content can still link to your blog posts or business website – just in a more visually interesting way.

Simple text status updates are losing out to images. However, an easy and simple way to retain your status updates while making them more visually prominent is to turn your text posts into images. Already used as a means of posting inspirational quotes to social media, this technique can help make your simpler status messages pop.

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The connections between images, tags, and likes in graph search means that users now have more ways of finding your business’s content on Facebook. The more your fans like and share your content, the more likely your page will appear in the feeds and search results of your fans as well as the friends of your fans.

The key to optimizing your business’s page for the new Facebook is increase your visual content, optimize it effectively, and encourage your fans to like and share it often.

 

Megan-Webb Morgan writes about business marketing for a variety of business blogs worldwide. She is a blogger for B2B lead generation resource, ResourceNation.com. Follow them on Facebook and Twitter

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