In this 2016 updated version of our blog post, we take a deep dive into Facebook’s advertising image size recommendations.
Facebook advertising image sizes range from 100 x 72 pixels to 1200 x 1200 pixels. Creating the perfect ad can be confusing. Facebook’s own documentation for advertising images is often misleading. Facebook recommends an image size of 600 x 225 pixels. This image size is referenced in one of the most commonly used links when researching ad image sizes. The problem is that this article is either incorrect or outdated.
For those of us who create Facebook ads on a daily basis, it’s still not that simple. In this post, I’ll show you the different image sizes and what types of ads the are displayed on Facebook. Keep in mind that Facebook has ten different ad types and three different placements. This gives a total of 30 different ad types. The good news is that once you decide what ad type is best for your business, you’ll only have to create a few variances.
Facebook Page Post Photo Ad
For many businesses, this will be the type of ad they will choose. The recommended image size for this Facebook ad is 1200 x 1200 pixels. Keep in mind that this image will be scaled down to fit on various screen sizes and devices. As with all Facebook ads, you are only allowed to use text that is 20% or less of the image. This is done to create better ads.
Facebook Page Post Video Ad
Video ads for your business are often a great choice, especially when connecting on Facebook. The recommended size for this ad is 1200 x 675 pixels and has a 16:9 aspect ratio. One of the biggest mistakes made is to use one of the thumbnail images that are automatically generated by your video host provider. These thumbnails are often a poor choice at communicating what your video is actually about. Consider creating a still image that is separate from the video itself. Just keep in mind that with all Facebook ad images, your ad will be declined if more than 20% consists of text.
Facebook Post Text Ad
Post ads have some of the lowest click through and conversion rates. Facebook is a visual media. Just consider how you use Facebook yourself. We often use Facebook to share pictures of our families, things we find entertaining and our personal adventures. Facebook Text Ads just tend to stick out like a sore thumb. Sure there are some edge cases where they are effective but most of us should stay away from them. If you do choose to use a text ad, you will be restricted to a maximum of 90 characters. This is the same amount of characters allowed in almost every other ad so there is no real advantage to using these ads.
Facebook Page Post Link Ad
Link ads are a great way of sending visitors to a specific landing page on your website. The recommended size is 1200 x 627 pixels. This ad is also one of the few ad types that have a minimum which is 560 x 292 pixels and has a 1.91:1 aspect ratio. I’ve contacted Facebook’s Ad Team to find out why this particular ad has a minimum size. With many things on Facebook, even their internal teams often have no idea why a particular standard exists. This type of ad is also unique in that you are allowed an additional 25 characters for a link title.
Facebook Domain Ad
The recommended image size for a domain ad on Facebook is a whopping 1200 x 864 pixels and has a 1.39:1 aspect ratio. This is one of the largest images allowed in a Facebook ad. This ad type also offers an additional 25 characters for a title. Used in the correct way, this ad type can have significant click through rates. The key to using this type of ad is to make sure the audience is relevant and highly targeted. This particular type of ad is only found on the sidebar.
Facebook Offer Ad
An image size of 1200 x 627 pixels and a 1.91:1 aspect ratio is recommended for this ad. This is also one of the few ads that have a minimum image size of 400 x 209 pixels. This ad is great for local and brick and mortar businesses. Think of it as similar to a Groupon offer. Perhaps the best way to utilize this ad is to attract additional business during off times or seasons. Just remember to always make sure that at least a certain percentage of new customers can be converted to repeat buyers. One of the biggest issues with Groupon type discounts is that they only create temporary spikes in sales. This can quickly turn into a money loser so price accordingly.
Facebook Event Ad
A Facebook Event ad image has a minimum size of 560 x 210 pixels. The recommended size for the image of this ad type is 1200 x 450 pixels and an aspect ratio of 8:3. By now you are probably wondering why Facebook has so many different image sizes. I don’t think the people at Facebook even know. What is even more interesting is the aspect ratio of the image use in this particular ad type. I’ve been designing for the web for almost 20 years and I don’t think I have ever seen this particular ratio used – EVER! The good news is that this is a fantastic ad type for many businesses. It includes a 25 character event title and the normal 90 character limit. I would recommend using this ad type over a Facebook Offer ad. It’s often less expensive and has a better click through rate.
Facebook Page Like Ad
I really liked (no pun intended….well maybe) this ad type a few years ago. You know back before Facebook double dipped and decided not to show your posts to everyone who liked your page. If you have huge advertising budgets and money is no object, then go for it. The recommended image size for this ad is the same as a Facebook Event ad. It has a minimum size of 560 x 210 pixels. The recommended size for the image of this ad type is 1200 x 450 pixels and that crazy 8:3 aspect ratio.
Facebook Mobile App Ad
This particular ad only shows up on your mobile news feed. Hence the name “Mobile App Ad”. I haven’t used this particular ad type for any of my clients. What seems a bit strange is the size of the image. It’s one of the largest images used in Facebook ads and has a recommended size of 1200 x 627 pixels and a 1.91:1 aspect ratio. Even with the availability of high res displays on many mobile phones, this is a huge file for mobile devices. It just seems like a waste of bandwidth to me. Another curious thing about this image is that the minimum size is the exact same as the recommended size.
Facebook Ap Ad
This ad type has a recommended size of 1200 x 864 pixels and a 1.39:1 aspect ratio. This ad also has a minimum size of 100 x 72 pixels. Ok, you don’t have to be a graphic designer to know that these are two very different image sizes. In this case it’s fairly simple to understand that one image is for sidebar placement and the other is for the desktop newsfeed. If you use this ad type, don’t be tempted to use the same image in both the sidebar and desktop newsfeed. Even though Facebook uses the same image in their examples, it would be in your best interest to use an image that is more appropriate for their different sizes.
Facebook’s 20% Text Image Rule
According to Facebook Ad image rules, you are not allowed to have more than 20% text in your image. We recently ran some tests and have found that Facebook may be loosening up their enforcement of this rule. We submitted several ad images that had almost 30% of text image overlay. Overlaying text on your image helps to quickly convey your offer and has a much higher conversion rate. We suggest that you give this a try. If the ad isn’t accepted, you can simply change the text overlay to meet their standards.
Are You Completely Confused?
Facebook can be a great way to connect with new and existing clients. Creating your first Facebook ad can seem a bit overwhelming and confusing. Starting off with the right image size is often the best way to begin. I personally would tend to stay away from Facebook’s official documentation as it is often outdated and contradictory.
The recommended image sizes are larger than the minimum image sizes that render in the ads to ensure the highest resolution across placements.
If the uploaded images is smaller than the above minimum size, it will be not possible to run this ad. For all other minimum image sizes, the ad will run but will render in the older/smaller format of this unit (roughly 100x100px image depending on the unit)
To see Facebooks official documentation, visit the Facebook Ads Guide.
Hang In There and Run Your First Ad
The best way to understand Facebook ads is to actually run one. Make sure you start with a small budget so that you can learn what works and what doesn’t. If you still feel overwhelmed, there are plenty of professionals that can help you create your first ad. If you have any questions fell free to email me or hit me up on Twitter.