Once in a blue moon, we receive a help request from a client concerned that FeedOtter is not selecting the correct image. In fact, it is one of our most common customer concerns, which is why this topic has moved from the “idea” file to actually creating this post. The end goal is to shed some light on the mystery of how FeedOtter picks email campaign images and (hopefully) diminish the frustrations you may be feeling at this very moment.
If you are in a real hurry, here’s what the post is all about: the og:image tag.
That’s a good question — the Open Graph tag was introduced by Facebook in 2010 to allow for easier integration for Facebook, its user data, and a website. It allows you to control how your information (images, descriptions, etc.) from one site is used when that same information is shared with another site or platform.
The og:image tag incorporates a specific URL that represents the content you wish to share, for this example: a blog post. The URL should not be a generic image like a company logo, writer’s photo, or an image that appears on multiple pages. This image should be unique to your post and different enough to catch the eye when the reader scans over your company’s blog digest newsletter.
We at FeedOtter try our best to keep the whole process as simple as possible, and that’s why FeedOtter looks for the web standard og:image tag to determine the image to show. This is the same method that Facebook and Instagram uses to display images, and that’s why it is so crucial for your shared content to have the Open Graph tags setup. If this tag is not present, FeedOtter (similar to Facebook) will scan the page and pick the image it thinks is best. I wouldn’t personally recommend going this route as it leaves too much to chance.
Adding an image tag is pretty simple, we’ve seen clients be successful using plugins like Yoast SEO, among others. These plugins will allow you to set the Open Graph tags for each page, usually in the social/sharing options of the plugin. The plugin, Jetpack will also automatically add Open Graph meta tags to each one of your pages by activating Sharing or Publicize.