Thumbnails Not Working When Sharing A Link On Facebook

If you are experiencing problems while sharing a link on facebook which has a image associated with it, then this post can help you out.

If you don’t know what i am talking about then let me explain, For instance lets say you want to share a blog article link which has a thumbnail associated with it. But for some reason when you share this link on facebook, the image or thumbnail just doesn’t show up.

This might happen because facebook using cache to store its information.

Note (definition of cache by Wikipedia) : A web cache is a mechanism for the temporary storage (caching) of web documents, such as HTML pages and images, to reduce bandwidth usage, server load, and perceived lag.

If you ask me why facebook uses cache, then i guess the definition of cache itself answers the question. And since there are more than 500 million users online, caching is important factor of facebook. Well now getting back to our problem.

Suppose if i want to share the link to my article on facebook. What i will do is copy the URL from the address bar and paste it in facebook status box. Now facebook is supposed to get the image from the link. But it doesn’t. Check the image below :

Now what you can do is just visit https://developers.facebook.com/tools/debug

And just type in the link in the box and hit debug option. Refer image given below : 

When you hit debug, you should get some details on your screen. Don’t bother to read everything over there if you aren’t really interested in understanding the facebook open graph type of stuff. Just find the og:image property on the page.

If your link has a image associated with it, then it will appear in front of the og:image property. If you don’t see any image in front of og:image property, then your link has no image associated with it. If image is associated with your link, then and then only the link will add a image thumbnail while sharing a link on facebook.

In the image above you can see i have two images in front of og:image property. This is because my link has image associated with it. And after debugging my link, i have refreshed the facebook cache. So now facebook will display my image on posting the link.

So as shown in the image above, debugging my link and re-posting it in the status box helped me to get the facebook cache refreshed for my particular link. And this helped me to get my image as the thumbnail of the post, which was not appearing previously.

Note: You can use debugger to debug any links which are showing incorrect information when you paste them in the status box. For example, if your site is in maintenance mode and you paste your link in facebook status box. Then facebook will cache your link description as maintenance mode. And this will stay as it is even when your site is removed from maintenance mode. So in order to fix such a problem, you can use facebook debugger for your link.

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