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How to Create a Cover Photo for Your Facebook Timeline

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  • How to Create a Cover Photo for Your Facebook Timeline

    How to Create a Cover Photo for Your Facebook Timeline

    This how-to guide is designed to help Facebook Pages create a cover image that looks professional and makes a great first impression without violating the Facebook Pages Terms.

    1. Follow the new Facebook Pages Terms for cover photos

    When Facebook announced Timeline for Pages on Feb. 29, 2012, they also updated their Facebook Pages Terms with new guidelines for cover photos.
    Specifically, a Page’s cover photo may not:
    • Encourage people to upload your cover to their personal timelines,
    • Include contact information, like your website address, email, mailing address, or information that Facebook wants you to put in your Page’s “About” section,
    • Include references to Facebook features or actions, such as “Like” or “Share” or an arrow pointing from the cover photo to any of these features,
    • Include calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends.”

    And of course, “covers can’t be deceptive, misleading, or infringe on anyone else’s copyright.”

    In other words, Facebook wants your Page cover photo to be an eye-catching photograph, not an advertisement or wordy graphic.

    2. Design to fit the correct size and shape

    The Facebook cover photo is not a common image size, and the rectangular composition includes a cut-out for your profile icon in the lower left corner.

    This means the best-looking cover photos tend to be images that are designed to take advantage of the cover photo’s exact size and shape.

    Click on image for a larger view

    Detailed measurements:
    • Official Facebook cover photo size: 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall
    • Official minimum image dimension: 720 pixels wide
    • Profile icon cut-out: 168 pixels wide by 103 pixels tall, spaced 24 pixels from the left edge of the cover photo
    • Profile icon size: 160 x 160 pixels, with a minimum image upload size of 180 x 180 pixels

    Important tips:
    • Facebook will overlay a 1-pixel transparent gray border on top of your image.
    • If you upload an image smaller than 851 x 315, it will be stretched to fit. This will make your image quality appear slightly grainy or distorted. The best practice is to upload an image that’s sized to Facebook’s dimensions.
    • Screenshot measurements reveal that only 314 pixels are displayed from a 315-pixel image upload. The top edge appears to be covered by the Facebook header bar. A test with a 314-pixel tall image became distorted when uploaded, so do upload a 315-pixel tall image even though only the bottom 314 pixels will be displayed.

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