News Ticker

Expert Feature: What is Open Graph and Will It Improve Website Links on a Facebook Timeline?

Powerful Features and Functionality on Facebook 

The Open Graph Protocol is a standard markup that offers many powerful features to add functionality on Facebook.


One popular example is website links on the Facebook timeline.

Often, when linking to a website in a timeline post, the thumbnails offered are not optimal and sometimes the person posting eliminates a graphic altogether due to the lack of relevance.

Page descriptions that often do not describe the page are very frustrating to both people posting and website owners. Businesses want more control over the look of their links on Facebook.

The standard was invented by Facebook and is used for many reasons, including:

— Offering more control for links to websites in timeline posts by linking to images, audio, video, descriptions and more.
— Allowing visitors to sign into a site using Facebook.
— Allowing visitors’ friends to comment and like the activities performed by their friends.


Endless Uses

Uses for Open Graph are endless and definitely worth the investment in resources.

The control that Open Graph offers over timeline posts is invaluable.

Adding Open Graph meta data to a web page is simple and easy.

The basic elements are placed inside the <head> element on the page and include:

— The title of your “object” – text, website, video, audio, etc.
— The type of object according to a list provided by the Protocol.
— The image URL pointing to the location of an image for this object. This image will be displayed in the Facebook search results.
— The URL for the object.


Open Graph Example

GoDaddy added Open Graph tags to its new home page. When posting a link to the website on a Facebook timeline, the graphic, link and description are perfectly available to the viewer. 

GoDaddy Timeline

Figure 1. Timeline post with link to the site using Open Graph tags.

To generate this information, GoDaddy used the following tags:

Opene Graph code
Figure 2. Open Graph Tags for

This example includes a title, type=website, URL for the website, URL for the image in the post, site name and a description.

By adding this meta data to their home page, GoDaddy now has complete control over the way their link displays on a Facebook timeline anytime anyone posts a link to the GoDaddy website on a timeline.

This simple meta data creates such a big impact.

By adding the Open Graph meta data to a business website, other companies and individuals can link more easily on their Facebook timeline.

The resulting link on any timeline includes a correct description and image.

Every business should add Open Graph code to its website.

  • Do you use Open Graph on your website?
  • What features have you implemented?

Please share your story with us below.


Related article


About Melanie Yunk (50 Articles)
Melanie Yunk, President, Roaring Pajamas Melanie Yunk started working as a social media and search engine optimization consultant early in 2009, when she founded Roaring Pajamas, a digital marketing agency in Northern California. Melanie is passionate about helping businesses market their products and services online. She brings more than 20 years of marketing, engineering and content experience to clients from various industries, including search engines, construction, retail, B2B, wholesale, heavy duty trucks, authors and more. Melanie previously founded Melanie's Fine Foods after purchasing Big Acres® Gourmet Sauces where she expanded the line to be distributed nationwide and in Canada. She also founded Yunk Consulting where she assisted software and semiconductor companies in implementing international standards for electronic databooks that she also helped developed while working at Intel Corporation. Her earliest career began at Honeywell Commercial Flight Systems where she worked on the Boeing 777 and MD11 cockpit projects. She continues to write on the Roaring Pajamas Blog and also as a guest blogger writing about all natural and gourmet foods. Melanie volunteers as a Board Member for the San Carlos Chamber of Commerce and former President of the Advisory Board for the Rosalie Rendu Center in East Palo Alto. She lives in San Carlos with her husband Kent and two Cornish Rex cats.