How to enable Open Graph meta tags, X (Twitter) Card meta tags and customize/personalize the social sharing information (message)
Optimizing Sharing Message for Facebook and All Other Social Networks Except Twitter & Pinterest
To personalize shared information to Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and many other networks you need to use Open Graph meta tags. Those tags are designed to communicate information about your website to Social Media sites when links to your site are shared. These tags allow you to craft custom titles, descriptions, and images to be used when your pages are shared.
Easy Social Share Buttons for WordPress can generate those tags for you if the option inside settings is activated. Those tags can also be generated by the SEO plugin you are using. It is important to understand that getting the proper shared message requires to have only one instance of social media optimization tags on your site.
Enable Generation of Social Media Optimization Tags (SMO)
If you don’t see the social sharing optimization menu activate from the activate/deactivate features function of the plugin.
If you are running a fresh plugin install (or you reset to default settings) the social media optimization tags are enabled by default. So you do not need to enable anything. If you are not sure visit Social Sharing -> Sharing Optimization and ensure that Facebook Open Graph Tags (Used By Most Social Networks) is enabled (Yes).
The Global Settings Suitable For Every Website
The proper usage of social media optimization tags needs to do a quick general setup. That setup will ensure the working of tags on the way you need them.
Default Social Media Image
The default social media image is those that will appear if post, page or product does not have a featured image or custom sharing image. We always recommend providing an image inside the field. This will prevent any further problems with parts of the site without properly generated tags.
If you are running a WooCommerce store, Easy Social Share Buttons for WordPress automatically will detect your products. For products, we will generate e-commerce product social media optimization tags. That will include the price, availability and gallery images (if such). Those functions are enabled by default. If you don’t need them disabling can be done from the Advanced Tag Generation Options.
Setting Your Optimized Message (Customize Default Generated Share Information)
Homepage Social Media Optimization Information (Share Message)
This is the information appearing in the sharing of your homepage. You need to fill and change from the plugin settings.
Single Post, Page, Product, Etc. Social Media Optimization Information (Share Message)
Each post, page, product or any custom post type of your website will have automated social media optimization tags. Those tags contain the default components of content – title, description generated from excerpt and image from the featured image. For 50% of users that is good enough. But if you need to boost the social reach it is highly recommended to generate engaging and optimized sharing information.
That is why on each post or page in the edit mode you will see the Social Media Optimization tag fields. In the preview, you will see the default generated message. This is not a real preview, but an approximate view of what will appear when you share.
Using the fields you can customize one component of sharing or all.
In the social share optimization block on each post you can set:
- Social Media Image – Add an image that is optimized for maximum exposure on most social networks. We recommend 1200px by 628px
- Social Media Title – Add a title that will populate the open graph meta tag which will be used when users share your content onto most social networks. If nothing is provided here, we will use the post title as a backup. We recommend usage of titles that does not exceed 60 characters
- Social Media Description – Add a description that will populate the open graph meta tag which will be used when users share your content onto most social networks.We recommend usage of description that does not exceed 160 characters
- Customize Open Graph URL – Important! This field is needed only if you made a change in your URL structure and you need to customize og:url tag to preserve shares you have. Do not fill here anything unless you are completely sure you need it – not proper usage will lead to loose of your current social shares and comments.
- Article Author Profile – Add link to Facebook profile page of article author if you wish it to appear in shared information. Example: https://facebook.com/author
Optimizing Sharing Message for Twitter
Twitter is one of the networks that does not connect the social media optimization tags and shared message strictly. For you, this means that along with the social media optimization details you can also set up a custom Tweet message.
The Twitter social media optimization tags are similar to those used by Facebook and others. They are called Twitter Card details. To enable those on your website you can do this in the Social Media Optimization menu of the plugin. If you are using SEO plugin probably you already have those generated on your site.
Activation of Twitter Card Tags
The activation of those tags you can do from Social Sharing -> Sharing Optimization menu.
- Twitter Site Username – fill the username of Twitter account that will appear in the tags as connected to your site (enter information without @ in front)
- Twitter Card Type – The card type determines the information that will appear. Summary is a text based tags, Summary with image also include as addition featured image.