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 a fantastic way to gain a lot more blog traffic.
At first, I tried hard coding and then a couple of WordPress plugins and finally settled on simply using my SEO plugin to add the necessary open graph tags for Twitter Cards to all my posts, and it works very efficiently.
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 Tweet about a blog post or article with an image is only accessible by clicking the hard to find 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 they will rarely take the time to 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, and in 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 Twitter. And then, if you click on the image, it only goes 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 will reproduce differently depending on the device you are using.
Twitter Cards work, mostly.
Twitter Cards are fantastic and attract far greater click-through rates and enhance engagement, but they are sometimes a little unpredictable, as I have sometimes noticed 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 render instantly.
It can 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 far fewer problems now.
Are Twitter Cards worth implementing on your blog?
Yes definitely, but understand that they are not always absolutely perfect.
They will render differently on a desktop, tablet or phone. Images that may appear in portrait (your book cover) on a desktop, will probably be cropped to landscape on a tablet or phone.
The one-click function of Twitter Cards, especially in retweets, is a huge advantage and if only for this reason, it is well worth adding Twitter Cards functionality to your blog to increase traffic to your site.