Facebook gives links more prominence in News Feed with 3x larger image preview

Facebook posts that contain links offsite will now appear in the desktop News Feed with a nearly three times larger image preview, the company has informed some of its advertisers.

Instead of 90×90 pixels, link previews will be 154×154 pixels. The link summary will also be able to include more characters. This change aims to help page owners and advertisers who want to drive users off Facebook. It could also lead users to click more links that their friends share. For now, only the desktop design is affected, but we’ve heard the social network is preparing a mobile version.

It seems the change does not apply to video sites like YouTube. The company likely wants page owners and advertisers to upload their videos to Facebook rather than hosting them on YouTube and then using the social network’s pages and ads feature to drive people there.

Link posts have historically been much less prominent than photo and video posts. As a result, many marketers post photos and include a link in the caption. Although this can catch more users’ eyes, it doesn’t always lead them to click the link. We wrote about these trade offs last month, after Facebook tested a new link format on posts from its Year in Review app.

The new link design rolling out beginning today is not quite as large as what Facebook used for Year in Review, and still not as large as standard photo posts, but it could significantly increase engagement with link posts an ads.

Publishers should ensure that their sites include images larger than 154×154 pixels in their Open Graph tags so that their links appear in the new larger format.

Advertisers will have the option to select their own custom image when they create Link Page Post Ads through the Power Editor or API.