How to Optimize Photos for Facebook Visual Social Marketing - dummies

How to Optimize Photos for Facebook Visual Social Marketing

By Krista Neher

A Facebook Page is the official representation of a brand or business on Facebook, and the visual appeal is very important in social media marketing. As you can see, you need a variety of custom images to get started with your Facebook Page.


The vital images required for a Facebook Page are the profile photo, a cover photo, and — possibly — custom images for tabs.

How to optimize Facebook profile photos

The profile photo is the small, square image that’s displayed beside the name of the business on Facebook. Your profile photo is arguably the most important image on your page because whenever people see your posts anywhere on Facebook, they also see this image.


A profile photo should be square and should be sized at 180 x 180 pixels. You can upload or use an image of any size. Using Facebook’s simple drag-and-drop tool, you can choose the area of the photo to display as your profile photo. The region you select must be a square.

To change or edit your Facebook profile photo, simply hover the mouse over the current profile photo while in Timeline view on your page. The Edit Profile Picture button appears. Then you can choose to upload a new photo or use an existing photo that you have already uploaded to Facebook.

After you’ve selected the method, you can choose the image and adjust the crop region to display the section of the image that you want to display as your profile photo.

When choosing a profile image for your Facebook Page, consider these best practices:

  • Choose an image with a square shape. The image you choose should be square, or you can edit it to a square shape using photo editing software. For example, the Boot Camp Digital logo is normally a rectangle; however, there is a square version specifically for the Facebook profile image.

  • Incorporate your logo or an easily identifiable item. Your logo, or another element that easily identifies your business visually, is the best choice for your Facebook profile photo. The image should be professional-looking and stand out in some way.

  • Resist the urge to change your profile photo often. Many Facebook users quickly skim their newsfeeds, looking for posts from the people and businesses they care about — and the profile image is what they look for in order to identify your posts. If the photo is continually changing, you face difficulty in building recognition with your fans.

These guidelines also apply to profile images for your personal Facebook profile, though people typically change their personal profile photos regularly.

How to optimize Facebook cover photos

The cover photo on Facebook is the large image that’s displayed prominently across the top of the Facebook Page, or personal profile. The cover photo is your opportunity to set the tone of your Facebook Page.


Cover photos on Facebook — which are public and can be viewed by anyone — must be at least 399 pixels wide. To lessen how long it takes for your cover image to load on your Facebook Page, Facebook recommends uploading a .jpg image that’s 315 pixels tall by 815 pixels wide and 100 kilobytes or smaller.

When Facebook initially let business Pages add cover photos, it placed a number of restrictions on the images. For example, they could contain only 20 percent text. Facebook says that cover photos can’t be “deceptive, misleading or infringe on anyone else’s copyright.” Also, you cannot encourage people to “upload your cover photo to their personal timelines.” Current information about Facebook’s guidelines for cover images can be found here.

Businesses use Facebook Pages in a number of ways, such as these examples:

  • Brand a business: The cover image can be used as a branding tool by showcasing your brand or business.

  • Showcase a product: Some businesses showcase their products or services via their cover photos. For example, a restaurant might showcase its signature dish, or a dentist might show before-and-after pictures of a smile he helped to improve.

  • Recognize customers: Periodically changing your cover photo to showcase or feature customers can be a popular way to make your page interactive and engage your fans. For example, a T-shirt company might use its cover photo to showcase designs from its customers.

  • Make special deals and offers: The cover photo is a useful place to highlight special offers or deals. For example, a pizza restaurant may change its cover photo on Mondays to promote a Monday-night pizza special.