If you have a Facebook business page, you probably share a number of articles that link to your website, blog, special offers and beneficial outside resources. You used to be able to customize the way that these links appear to fans with the ability to change the image, update the headline and put specific information in the description. This feature was extremely beneficial for tailoring information specifically to your followers. However, this option no longer exists.
You may think, “Why in the world would Facebook make this change? Now all of my articles will look unappealing, and my viewers won’t interact with my brand!”
Believe it or not, Mark Zuckerberg and his team are, in fact, not out to get us and make our lives difficult. In this case, it’s the complete opposite. According to Facebook, the main goal of this change is to fight the spreading of spam and fake news. “By removing the ability to alter link metadata (i.e., headline, description, image) from all link-sharing entry points on Facebook, we are eliminating a channel that has been abused to post false news.”
Although that is an extremely admirable cause, it’s still frustrating not to be able to edit link previews anymore. Don’t worry; we’ve found some workarounds:
- Use Drafts - One loophole we’ve found is if you create a post and then save it as a draft instead of publishing or scheduling it, you can go back to the draft and update it as you like! This seems like something Facebook wouldn’t allow with its new policy, so use this trick while it’s still available…
- Use A Third-Party Publishing Tool - If you use a platform like Hootsuite or Sprinklr to schedule your social media posts, you’re still able to edit link previews from there and schedule them to post to your Facebook page without any issues.
- Optimize Your Open Graph Meta Tags - If you’re sharing a link from your own website, you can update the backend to pull specific information when shared to Facebook. If you’ve updated these tags and your predetermined components still aren’t appearing on the screen, then you’ll need to have Facebook scrape your website again through the Open Graph Object Debugger. Once you choose “Fetch new scrape information,” your links should show your updated information.
- Claim Link Ownership - All of these adjustments may seem like a lot of work, especially for those in the media who publish their own content often. That’s why Facebook has created a “Link Ownership” section located in the “Publishing Tools” tab. This allows certain publishers to claim ownership of their site, and it will give them the ability to make any changes to links they share from it. This isn’t available to most pages yet, but we’re hoping Facebook will roll it out to all users in due time.
While this new process is definitely something we’ll need to adjust to, we have to respect the stance that Facebook is taking against the spreading of fake news. So keep on sharing!