Tl;dr: The Facebook cover photo should be 820 pixels long by 312 pixels tall on desktops and 640 pixels by 360 pixels tall on smartphones.
Social media was initially used to create and maintain connections or relationships between people. Nowadays, social media has turned into a powerful marketing tool for business. Facebook is dominating the social media platform of brand advertising because of its powerful grip on the so-called “netizens.” Instagram continues to grow and gather more viewers and market because of its social media influencers who are paid to promote or give “shout outs” of various products and online services.
Why does it matter?
One of the essential elements of Facebook that significantly affects business advertising is the cover photo. Using Facebook cover photos is the most practical marketing strategy. It is a free asset which has the same potential to generate more sales as compared to paid advertisements. Knowing how to create a cover photo the right way is essential. Follow along and see how you can apply the proper methods of making the perfect Facebook cover photo.
Aspect Ratio of a Facebook Cover Photo
Facebook recommends you to have a cover photo that can display dimensions of 820 pixels long by 312 pixels tall on desktops and 640 pixels by 360 pixels tall on smartphones. You shouldn’t upload a cover photo that is smaller than 640 pixels wide and 312 pixels tall. This is because the aspects of a cover photo on Facebook vary between desktop and smartphone,
Pro tip: It won’t be a problem if you have a cover photo that has more width on a desktop and more height on a smartphone.
Facebook will prompt you to crop excessive space. Make sure that your cover photo displays where you want Facebook users to pay attention within 820 pixels wide and 360 pixels long. The cover photo won’t be distorted or stretched if ever its dimensions are smaller. The cover photo on a desktop displays more width, while the cover photo on a smartphone displays more height. Play it safe so that your cover photo does not leave behind the relevant details or elements. Here is an example of an ideal cover photo by
Facebook Cover Video Setup
Facebook has a fantastic feature that allows business pages to use cover videos instead of something static like a photo. Although, the requirements of a cover video are more rigid or less flexible than that of a cover photo. Facebook only requires a minimum cover video dimension of 820 pixels wide by 320 pixels tall. The duration of your cover video can last from 20 seconds to 90 seconds only.
Your video should be saved and published with the same setup and uploaded from your desktop. Afterward, Facebook will prompt you to select a thumbnail from certain points of your cover video which Facebook users would see before the cover video plays. Also, don’t neglect the importance of rendering your cover video with the highest resolution possible.
Facebook page called Biteable helps Facebook users to create an ideal cover video that is eye-catching. Biteable conveniently covers many of Facebook’s cover video requirements for you. It includes cover video dimensions, HD resolution, video file format, and video length. You can visit their website at biteable.com and check out their Facebook Cover Video Guide.
Rundown of the video guide:
1. Create an account on Biteable’s website. You can use its platform to upload, create and share your video directly to Facebook, but downloading your video and uploading it yourself requires a Premium account.
2. Upon signing up, select “Create a New Video” and either select a video style or format or click on “Start From Scratch.” There are some cover video templates that Biteable offer for your convenience as well.
3. Afterward, you will have access to different video-making tools and options:
- Add new scenes to your library.
- Select a thumbnail.
- Add music with Biteable’s free tunes or upload your own.
- Color customization.
4. Publish your video, download it using a Premium account, and upload your cover video on Facebook.
Biteable recommends you to create a “short, clear, and simple” video that illustrates the primary purpose of your page and avoids unnecessary distractions. Important texts or messages should be positioned to the center as close as needed to ensure it from getting cropped out by Facebook. The cover video should start and end smoothly and not abruptly, and save it using MP4 or MOV file format which Facebook supports.
Ways of Sizing and Designing Facebook Cover Photos
While you are encouraged to push your boundaries in creating a unique and attractive Facebook cover photo. It should still look decent enough and convey what you want Facebook users to remember about your page.
Cropping your photo
When it comes to sizing your cover photo, you can either crop a selected photo that you downloaded on the internet. You can also choose from your collection or create an image with Adobe Photoshop and other photo editing software using the recommended resolution. The elements in your cover photo should compliment a horizontal layout since will Facebook display it with more width than height.
There are many more details to consider when designing your Facebook cover photo aside from attractiveness. An important consideration, which may be more applicable to business pages, is protecting your right to own your cover photo. To prevent or lessen the probability of users downloading and claiming your photo, you need to include a representation of your brand or digital signature. Notice the images of some established brands on Facebook. You will see their websites incorporated in it as well as their brand logos in place of classical watermarks.
That “20% text rule”
There used to be this so-called “20% text rule” wherein Facebook recommended on 20 percent of texts a cover photo. It was removed, but the essence of keeping your message concise is still essential. You should include phrases that encourage Facebook users to engage and invest their time with your page. Your cover photo shouldn’t be confusing or misleading since it is an extension of your page. It should include color schemes that match your business or brand and ultimately compliments with the purpose of your page.
Since your profile picture will appear on the left side of your page, your cover photo should maintain balanced, instead of striking, elements. While your audience should see your profile picture, it is equally vital to pull their attention to the cover photo. It is where they would understand what your logo and overall business are about. Also, it will look more aesthetically pleasing.
How to create Facebook cover photos in Canva
Marketer Sara Nguyen walks us through the steps of creating a beautiful cover art using Canva.com:
Here are some screenshots of the steps:
After signing up on Canva, you will be directed to “Create a design” page. Here, you can start by clicking on “Facebook Cover.”
You will be directed to Canva’s editing platform that is specifically designed for creating Facebook cover photos. You will have access to many of its free editing and template features.
There are many free templates to choose from. Select a template and edit the text as you wish.
You can also upload an image to your Canva account library and include it in your cover photo. Doing this is as simple as dragging and dropping your picture on the cover photo.
There are different background designs to choose from and various elements which include grids, frames, shapes, lines, illustrations, icons, and charts. You can also add additional texts and apply different texts layouts and font styles.
Once you’ve accomplished your desired cover photo, you click on the “Download” and click on one of the file formats. The recommended file format for Facebook is “Image: high quality (PNG).”
Comply with Facebook policies regarding cover photos:
You can now upload your Canva cover photo on Facebook. Sara highlights that you should include a graphic that represents your business and tagline. Furthermore, she notes that you should comply with Facebook policies regarding cover photos:
- “Don’t infringe on other people’s intellectual property. Use images and photos you have rights to use only.”
- “Don’t be deceptive or misleading.”
- “Don’t encourage other people to upload your cover photo to their personal timelines.”
For more information or a better grasp of using Canva’s platform for creating cover photos, check out her Youtube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpBomHY8eJ7ai5712XsiJ4w.
Important Facebook Cover Photo Considerations
Now that you have a vast understanding of sizing and designing Facebook cover photo, you shouldn’t neglect some details. Some may appear like minor priorities. One important consideration to optimize your cover photo is to direct it towards the action buttons below. Aside from creating a cover photo that showcases your brand and attracts attention, it should subconsciously prompt Facebook users to explore. By clicking on the action buttons like “Sign Up” or “Shop Now”, they are directly engaging with your product or brand. You can observe Facebook pages belonging in Hospitality industries that implement this strategy. This way, your cover photo would be maximized to its fullest capacity.
Keep smartphone users in mind
Another important point is to keep smartphone users in mind. It may be easy to create and set up your Facebook cover photo on a desktop. Don’t forget how the cover photo would display if it is viewed from a smartphone. In 2016, about 1.15 billion Facebook users accessed the Facebook application on their mobile phones. The sides of the cover photo would be cropped when it is viewed on a smartphone. More importantly, don’t put essential elements too close to the right side of your cover photo since it is more likely to be cropped out.
Don’t just upload a cover photo without a brief description on Facebook. Just like other image uploads on Facebook, it is better to add a description that aligns with what you are trying to promote on your page. It may also include a shortened linked to your official website to maximize your cover photo. Besides adding a description, you should also pin a relevant post to the top of your page’s timeline. Description helps in optimizing your cover page by presenting a piece of what you want Facebook users to expect as they scroll through your page.
Illustrate the main features of the products
In terms of marketing your products or services, your cover photo should illustrate the main features of the products. Telling people what they can do with it, or how helpful or useful the products are to their daily lives. Other business pages promote their brands by including the scenery of their office or restaurant. This way, people are more likely to explore the whereabouts of the business and visit the place as well.
By considering the aspect of “social” in social media, it is essential to surround your cover page with elements that encourage interaction with your page. The cover photo shouldn’t only be a marketing tool or piece of advertisement but should also be designed to interact and make Facebook users click on something on your page. One way to implement social elements on your cover photo is to advertise upcoming events including webinars, conferences or online forums. Some Facebook pages also incorporate the faces of their CEOs or other key personnel as a way of “humanizing” their cover photos.O
Websites to find FB cover photos
Other things to consider
The last few things to consider when creating your Facebook cover photo are what to avoid. First and foremost, your cover photo shouldn’t negate the cover photo policies of Facebook. Your page may be taken down just because of a single cover photo mishap. Do not include elements that deface other people or companies and anything else that is ultimately negative and offensive. It is better not to contribute to the “toxic social media” connotation.
Another thing to prevent your on Facebook cover photo is including too many words. Your cover photo should be able to speak for itself but branding your business image should require some words as well. Following the 20 percent rule should come in handy. Do not put an array of bright colors just to appear lively. Regardless, incorporating colors that contradict each other may confuse and entirely blow off a potential viewer or consumer. Lastly, do not use a generic or plain cover photo since it wouldn’t present or offer a reason for Facebook users to stay and leave immediately. While clicking in an instant arouses gratification, your cover photo shouldn’t delay gratification if you want to build a community of followers or generate sales.
Examples of FB pages with Amazing Cover Photos
There are several Facebook pages which showcase authentic personalities of a Facebook cover photo. By applying all the possible methods of sizing and designing the perfect cover photo. Many Facebook pages grew in other aspects of their page. Such as an increasing number of like, shares and comments on each of their Facebook posts.
Here is an example of a cover photo by Learning English Essentials before. As seen above, it has an Ipad with an arrow that points towards the “Sign Up” button. This is referred to as “call to action” since it encourages Facebook users to engage with its free product. It includes the logo of the company in the corner of the Ipad image as a way of securing their rights of the cover photo.
Here is an example of a cover photo by Learning English Essentials before. As seen above, it has an Ipad with an arrow that points towards the “Sign Up” button. This is referred to as “call to action” since it encourages Facebook users to engage with its free product. It also includes the logo of the company in the corner of the Ipad image as a way of securing their rights of the cover photo.
One of the older Facebook pages or versions is this cover photo by The Space In Between with Sara Brooke. It displays the books that she had published. The cover photo also incorporates colors that compliment with the logo and a tagline to top it off. These are essential elements which represent her business.
Video marketing continues to step up its game from the television screen to social media. You do not even need a big budget to create a compelling video advertisement. Anyone can virtually access a desktop and get right into the job. Easil presents a cover video that offers an easy way of marketing your brand. The video prompts Facebook users and potential clients to believe that its product is easy to use and guarantees quality outputs.
The key to perfecting a Facebook cover page is by being consistent with the trends, designs, and innovations that you see on Facebook. By doing so, you are borrowing a portion of netizens on Facebook. You now have more than 50 percent chance of entirely building your Facebook empire.
Want to showcase your FB cover art? Drop a link with your FB page for a chance to get featured on this article 🙂