Twitter Cards increase blog traffic dramatically
I have been experimenting with Twitter Cards on my WordPress blogs for a long time now, and all I can say is that they are fantastic, but only when they work.
While I tried hard coding, I also tried a couple of WordPress plugins and finally settled on using my SEO plugin to add the necessary open graph tags for Twitter Cards to all my posts, and this seems to works well.
What are Twitter Cards?
Twitter Cards are a facility that Twitter offers to add images or even video to Tweets and re-Tweets of blog posts.
But by far the biggest advantage of Twitter Cards is that they transform a Tweet image into a one-click passage to your original post.
Without Twitter Cards, a blog post or article with an image is only accessible by clicking the tiny link URL. If you click the image, all you get is a bigger image. This is a good way to waste a potential blog visitor because rarely will they hunt for the link.
From the point of view of authors, in particular, this is a fantastic opportunity to have, for example, your book cover appear in any of your Tweets or retweets by others about your book, and have readers go directly to your blog post in one click.
What is the difference between an Image Tweet and a Twitter Card?
Here is an image Tweet without Twitter Card functionality.
— Whizbuzz Books (@Whizbuzz) September 1, 2017
If you click on the image, it does not go to the original post, but only to a larger version of the image. Then you need to hunt for the link. To get traffic to your blog, this is far too many steps for a lot of people.
Now let’s look at how an image Tweet works using Twitter Cards.
— Just Publishing (@justpublishing) September 3, 2017
Now, when you click the image in this Tweet, it links directly to the original post. In today’s Facebook one-click world, this is an absolute winner and a way to leverage more visitors to your blog or website.
Because these Tweets rely on Twitter for content delivery, I am not 100% sure how my embedded examples above will show up on this post, as because they are scripts, they may or may not work as well as on a Twitter feed.
That is the only small problem with Twitter Cards.
When they work, they are fantastic and attract far greater engagement, but they are sometimes a little unpredictable, and as I have sometimes noticed, a Tweet can work, or not, on different devices.
For example, while a Tweet will work on my laptop, the exact same Tweet with the Twitter Card image on my iPad or phone, may not.
It can also sometimes take Twitter Cards a minute or two to render an image after posting. So occasionally, a Twitter Card tweet will have a grey box instead of an image. If you refresh your browser after a couple of minutes the image usually appears, however.
I have to say that in recent times though, Twitter Cards have become much more reliable than they were when they were first introduced, so you should have fewer problems now.
So, are Twitter Cards worth implementing on your blog or website?
Yes definitely, but understand that they are not always absolutely perfect. The one-click function of Twitter Cards is a huge advantage though, and if only for this reason, it is well worth adding Twitter Cards functionality to your blog to increase traffic to your site.