(UPDATED! April 2014)
As always, I’m going to be completely honest: all the information on sizes and dimensions of cover photos for social networks, including backgrounds, profile pictures, etc. have changed several times. So, the infographics prepared for 2014 were basically rendered obsolete overnight.
In November 2013, Google Plus launched its latest change and just recently, in January 2014, Twitter changed the design of the users’ homepage. Even, at this exact moment, they’re preparing a new surprise for us all. So, this infographic that’s been so helpful for all of us, isn’t really going to be that useful anymore.
The goal of this article isn’t only to present you with cold hard data about social media image dimensions, but to also give you practical advice to optimize your brand strategy, and improve its image throughout different social networks. Competition on social networks is fierce, so you can’t afford to waste opportunities to attract new audiences. Users are constantly exposed to tons of information, which is why the first impression of a brand must be powerful and convincing in a matter of seconds. If you want to avoid the mistakes all companies talk about on social networks don’t miss this article.
Now, I’m gonna share some information with you that I’ve been gathering on the sizes and dimensions of pictures for different social networks as of April 2014.That way we can complement the information on the infographics that are still valid.
1- Twitter’s cover dimensions – Updated April 2014 – (+tips!)
The new Twitter has arrived!!
On April 22, 2014 this popular social network rolled out its new web profile experience to users all around the world. It’s appearance has radically changed: we’re talking about real changes that are far from the original structure. Twitter has swapped the aspects that made it so unique for some that make it actually very (VERY) similar to Facebook.
So, what do you guys think?
The reason for these changes, and other changes that they made in 2013, is to give much more importance to pictures and buttons. Why? In order to give users a similar experience to the one they have on their mobile devices. Precisely, in May 2013, Twitter also optimized the navigation for Android and iOS devices which resulted in it being simpler to see, share, and tweet.
Here we go, the dimensions of Twitter’s cover: (Updated April 2014!)
The new Twitter is now available for all users. If you haven’t gotten it yet, you can find it here.
According to Twitter Help Center: they suggest the following dimensions:
- Profile pic: 400 x 400 px
- Cover photo: 1500 x 500 px
- Imagen in-stream:
The size of the preview pic has also been changed. Now, it’s just big enough so that you don’t have to exit the stream to see it.
But, above all, this change was essentially oriented to allow brands to optimize communication campaigns easier through storytelling, the new trend in content marketing that uses videos and/or pictures to tell a story that aims to bring brands closer to their audience avoiding the old-fashioned TV ad.
- The dimensions of Twitter’s picture for the in-stream, must be of 440 x 220 px, vertically centered with a radius of 2:1 and it can’t be more than 3MB. If you want the preview pic you see on of the stream to be the same as the original, it can’t exceed the following measurements: 1024 x 512 (aspect 2:1). — (I´m working to have this portion of the info updated too )
- Engagement: how to get 94% more retweets:
According to research by Dan Zarella, pictures uploaded via pic.twitter.com get 94% more retweets than others. On top of that, it’s the only way the “autoexpand” tool works.
- Users respond 40% more often to content with pictures than to “plain” content. Therefore, you should take advantage of new tools platforms are providing brands and professionals, with their most “marketable” interfaces. Don’t hesitate to use tools to edit pictures such as Pixlr or Piktochart to come up with infographics. That way you can make the data you share more attractive. You definitely don’t need to be an expert in design to pull this off!
- Links for pictures take up about 26 characters of a tweet, leaving 114 available. Remember short and to the point works best. According to research done by TrackSocial, the tweets with the highest engagement percentage, are those that have between 70 to 100 characters. Use tools such as Postcron, which allow you to create and schedule your tweets using its Bulk Uploading feature. That way, you can schedule content for a whole month in just minutes!
2- Google+’s cover dimensions 2014 and other important things
As we pointed out at the beginning of the article, in November 2013 G+ decided to change its cover photo and optimize it at the request of users who didn’t really like the huge picture they used to have.
For those of you who don’t remember what it looked like… Here’s the “before”:
The new cover’s aspect (radius) remains the same 16:9, but what’s shown is way smaller. You probably have noticed, as users, you didn’t need to change anything manually, however, there are details that can be optimized and here are the specific dimensions you should use to achieve them:
- The maximum size of the cover image can be of 2120 x 1192 px
- The minimum size of the cover image must be more than 480 x 270 pix
- The size of the profile picture is still of 250 x 250 pix
How it looks on devices:
G+’s design is responsive, so pictures automatically adapt to different devices. However, if you want to ensure maximum quality on all screens, tablets, or smartphones, we recommend you upload them with a size of at least 920 x 250 pix but not more than 1080 x 608 pix, otherwise some of the information will get lost.
Here’s how it appears on Android and iOS:
- Feed (=timeline or stream):
In the beginning of 2013, G+ changed the layout of its page to make it more visual. They added columns to optimize the space of pictures and videos. But this wasn’t only a change that involved pictures. They also incorporated a tool that automatically improves pictures, called Auto Highlight. It lets you view pictures full screen and also upload more than 600 pictures or the equivalent to 15 GB. They also added Hangouts on G+ for Android and iOS among other big news.
Here’s the new layout, it’s responsive and super optimized:
- for those of you who haven’t used this platform that much, here’s a link by Google+’s support team where they show you step by step how to set a new cover photo:
- Remember that nowadays G+ is “THE” social media plataform. Its the most influential in positioning and ranking of search engines. It’s the star factor of any SEO strategy. Therefore you need to create a G+ page and professional profile if you want them to be found and well ranked in the results of search engines. Here’s a very practical guide by Google to dive right into the Plus world.
Anyway, to make your life easier, here are 4 quick basic ideas for optimizing your SEO with Google Plus
- Name of your company: Use the full name, not abbreviations.
- Make the most of the new personalisation of G+ URL, it optimizes the link of your profile or page aesthetically, so it looks like this:”https://plus.google.com/+YourCompanyName” instead of: “https://plus.google.com/3135465465186530656526″. This way you seem more professional and you can include it on other profiles.
- Description: this would be the “biography” part in Twitter terms. For both cases, you should make your description attractive and in less than 160 characters. It has to be pleasant and convincing for users.
- Authorship: it allows you to associate your content (ideal for bloggers) to your G+ profile. That way, if you have lots of material under your name, you’ll gain presence and credibility. This is great because and the search engine prioritizes writers or content generators who have the most
authority built around their name. Here’s an article by the Google support team explaining how to set up authorship.
- This tip is linked to the previous one: post lots of content so you can gain relevance and authority in the web. The more +1s and shares your posts get the more “points” you’ll get and the more weight you’ll have in the ranking.
3- Facebook’s cover dimensions 2014
Let’s take a break from all those changes on the other platforms. Let’s take a look atFacebook, who hasn’t fallen behind, we’re all just extremely used to it.
Jon Loomer alongside WERSM made a super complete infographic that has everything you need to know about optimizing pictures and content strategies on this platform.
- Facebook Cover-Profile
- Facebook Timeline:
- Posts with less than 250 characters get 60% more engagement.
Take a look at what happens with posts that include pictures:
- 104% more comments
- 53% more likes
- The use of Instagram grew 1179% (it’s by Facebook)
- 84% more clicks compared to other types of posts
- Use tools such as Postcron’s Multiupload where you can upload and schedule more than 300 pictures in only seconds.
- Use picture editors to optimize them and make your posts more attractive. For example: Pixlr, Sumopaint, Picmonkey or Splashup.-
- Facebook on devices:
For the whole infographic, including the section for events, ads, and more, click here
4- YouTube’s cover dimensions 2014
The channel’s cover: 2,560 x 1,440 px
Devices (just as on Google Plus, it automatically adjusts the picture according to the device)
Tablet Display: 1,855 x 423 px
Mobile Display: 1,546 x 423 px
TV Display: 2,560 x 1,440 px
Desktop Display: 2,560 x 423 px
Video title: not more than 100 characters
Video Description: up to 5 thousand characters.
Video Dimensions: 2,560 x 1,440 px
5- Vimeo’s cover dimensions 2014
Profile picture: 300 x 300 px
Dimensions to upload videos:
Standard Definition 4:3 ratio 640 x 480 px
Standard Definition 16:9 ratio 640 x 360 px
720p HD Video 1,280 x 720 px
1080p HD (Plus/PRO) 1,920 x 1,080 px
6- Instagram’s cover dimensions 2014
Note: maximum resolution of 2,048 x 2,048px with Instagram camera. Pictures exported via mobile, not taken with Instagram, will have a resolution less than 612 x 612 px.
7- Pinterest’s cover dimensions 2014
7- Linkedin’s cover dimensions 2014
2014 is the year of pictures, videos, and mobile devices. Make the most of this and optimize your profiles. That way, you can be in synch with all the current trends and thus, get closer to your target audience. Here’s the last piece of data that reinforces this conclusion: