If you have a Facebook page for your business (or a personal page), you need to know the secrets to creating the best cover photo for your site. The timeline format is here and with it comes a large, banner-sized photo sitting right at the top of the page. It’s the first thing anyone sees when they click onto your page, so it’s got to be perfect.
When you look at timeline cover photos on various pages, you’ll see some that are great and others that are not very good. Learn what makes the cover photo look its best and what to avoid when creating an image for your own page.
The Facebook timeline cover photo is very large – it takes up the entire width of the page. The photo needs to be sized at 851 x 315 pixels. This is quite large. If you want the photo to be professional looking (and not distorted), it needs to be properly sized using a software program such as Photoshop.
A little known secret is that the top pixel is not displayed because it’s under a border, so actually the size of the displayed photo is 851 x 314 pixels. Note – don’t try to size your photo to these dimensions or it will distort. Instead, always use the original dimensions.
Cover Photo and Icon Photo
The cover photo is the large photo at the top of the page. The icon photo is the small personal photo that is displayed with posts. What many people don’t realize is that the icon photo is always placed on top of the cover photo, in the lower left corner. It will block out some of your cover photo.
The two photos should be coordinated because they are going to be together on the page. Both of these photos are part of the public domain. This means that they can be seen by anyone, even if they are not your Facebook friend.
Facebook has imposed some rules regarding timeline cover photos. They have relaxed the rules slightly since they were first introduced two years ago. When it comes to the cover photo, Facebook wanted to be sure that it wasn’t used just as a way of advertising. To this end, they put a 20% rule in effect. This rule stated that you couldn’t have more than 20% of your cover photo in text. It’s a little known change that removes this rule. Now you can add more text if you want. However, keep in mind that the cover photo cannot be misleading or deceptive. You can, and should, use text on your photo if you’re a business page.
What many people don’t realize is they can use text on their cover photos. This text can’t be a blatant advertisement, but it can be a call to action or link. You can also use text to communicate new products or announce special events to your customers. If you’re going to add text, make sure you use a photo that is well suited to this. Don’t use a busy photo or your text will get lost. You can use an image-editing program to make the photo more suitable for text.
You’ll also need to be sure the text is properly placed. You can also use links including caption links, to capture some sales leads. Some well-placed buttons will help generate leads. Experiment with text until you find the look that you prefer. Be sure that the text does not get stuck under the area where it will be hidden from view by the icon image.