Twitter Cards in Store For You

Fully formatted tweet cards include more content.

By Kevin RR Williams

SOCIAL MEDIA Twitter is a popular social media platform. If anything in that sentence is unfamiliar to you, I invite you to crawl from beneath that rock and direct you to read a prior article. When you get up to speed, return here…

Blog: Crash Course in Twitter

Are you ready now? Tweeting a Web page generally involves formatting a URL with text using no more than 140 characters. (Various tweet buttons may get you started.) If you want to include a photo, an additional link is usually required, which reduces the amount of useable characters. Multiple links can confuse readers; they may click the image instead of the Web page.

Twitter Cards embed an expandable area of information beneath tweets in a variety of different layouts when using Twitter branded products. In case you haven't figured out the advantage of up to 3x characters with images, it's potentially more engagement — click throughs, retweets, etc. Therefore, Twitter Cards should be a consideration among your SEO (site engine optimization) procedures.

How to Add Twitter Cards to Your Site

Depending upon the layout, Twitter Cards may include one or more photos, a title, 200 characters of text, author and site attribution. The feature has recently exited its beta phase. This means Twitter Cards are available to you and me.

You first need a Twitter account. Then visit the page to test various configurations or validate code on your sample page. [1] When you are satisfied with the preview, submit it and wait for approval. There are multiple Twitter Card styles with the prospect of more to come. Submit an approval request for each style you plan to use. [2]

  • Summary Card: Default style includes title, description, thumbnail, and Twitter account attribution. In some cases, thumbnail is omitted.
  • Summary Card with Large Image: Prominently feature an image with Summary.
  • Photo Card: A Tweet sized photo card.
  • Gallery Card: A Tweet card with a grid of up to four photos.
  • Product Card: A Tweet card with large image and key product description.
  • Player Card: A Tweet sized video/audio/media player card.
  • App Card: A Tweet card for providing a profile of an application.

Update: Twitter has depreciated Photo, Gallery, and Product cards to Summary Card with Large Image.

Twitter card validator

Because page-specific meta tags are required, Twitter Cards may best be suited for web pages that are automated with scripts, plugins or back-end programs. This blog lacks such automation so meta tags must be added manually. However, the online store has the ability to generate variable meta tags.

Integration With This Site

Most Store.ClinicalPosters.com product pages are well suited for the Product Card. This features a prominent photo alongside price and category. Some anatomy poster pages are for mature audiences. On these, a Summary Card with no image is generated with text appended "Mature content." By including discreet tags within specific product page descriptions, Gallery Cards can also be created. Most news sites and plugins default to the general-purpose Summary Card layout. Even as Amazon.com does.

Twitter Cards in Store For You

Another consideration when selecting Twitter Card types is that only the Summary Card includes a more descriptive hint of its existence. A small document icon precedes the phrase "View summary" beneath the tweet. Other card types display less specific "View details" after the icon that might be easily confused with the normal "Expand" link.

Twitter Cards for Your Use

How can non-programmers get Twitter Cards on their blogs? If you're a WordPress blogger, you can download a plugin [3] to generate the required meta tags and then visit the Twitter validator page to submit a request for a Twitter Card. [1] If you use another blogging system, search Google or contact your site programmer to see if it supports Twitter Cards so you can begin enjoying more Twitter engagement.

If you are a casual visitor to this site, all you need to know is that when you tweet a product page from our online store, Twitter Cards are automatically included.

* Follow back predicated upon participant tweeting compatible and useful content.

References
  1. Twitter Card Validator. dev.twitter.com ^
  2. Twitter Cards. dev.twitter.com ^
  3. Twitter Cards for WordPress. wordpress.org ^