Twitter recent rolled out one of a slew of new advertisement types, called the Website Card. This advertisement is a lot like the Facebook Page Post ad, in size and layout. Yet, powered by Twitter, it can be so much more. How do Website Cards work and how can you take advantage of them?
What are Website Cards?
Website Cards are a new type of ad from Twitter that works for both desktop and mobile versions of the site. They work to drive traffic to your site, through a large position and more graphical space than normal tweets. Some tests indicate that website cards have clear calls to action, which results in a higher click rate and engagement while lowering the cost per click compared to traditional ads. Twitter themselves say that website cards reduced cost per click by over 80%, while increasing engagement by 25%+ and click rates by as much as 64%.
There are a few different types of cards.
- Gallery Card: This card showcases a grid of four square images separated by thin white borders. Images with white backgrounds eliminate this border for a more seamless whole. You can embed four images and link to a full gallery, which allows you to appeal to everyone all at once.
- Photo Card: This card allows you to highly one single image at a large size. The image should be at least 280×150 pixels, though larger images are recommended as long as the aspect ratio fits. The image will be resized as appropriate for different devices.
- Summary Card: This card is very much like the Facebook Post ad, which generates a title, description, byline, link and image for the website in question. There is a second variety of summary card with a larger image, which can be even better if you have a compelling graphic to showcase.
- App Card: This card is specifically designed to advertise an app. It automatically displays the app store that publishes the app, the title, rating, price and description of the app, as well as a link to the app. There’s a second version of this card as well, with more linking options.
- Player Card: This card is like the single photo card, only it displays an embedded video instead. It includes the video, the video source, the description, creator and link. It’s one of the harder cards to use, because it has strict rules you must follow.
- Product Card: This card is designed to showcase a single product on your commerce website, whether it’s your own site, eBay, Etsy, Amazon or another site. It shows the name of the shop, the product, the seller, the price, location of relevant, description and link.
Using Twitter Website Cards
How can you make use of these various types of card advertisements?
First off, it’s great for content marketing. The summary card is excellent for optimizing a particular post as it displays in your feed. Use it exactly the same way you would a Page Post on Facebook; optimize a compelling image, a great description and a great link.
Cards are also great for product sales. The product feature card displays just about everything a user might want to see about a product and acts as a tiny little landing page to help users convert on the spot. The process for purchasing from a product card is incredibly simple, as the link takes them directly to the product page.
Cards can drive downloads or sales of apps in much the same way. If you have an app you want to promote, it’s easier than ever to tweet about it and get a lot of people clicking through to see – assuming you have an interested audience, of course.
Creating Website Cards
To create a Twitter Website Card, first you need to have a Twitter account, which is obvious. You also need a Twitter Ads account, using their ad platform. Once you’re signed into that, you’ll find cards under the “creatives” tab.
When you click to create a card, you’ll be presented with the types of cards available. Twitter will ask for information to fill in the card. You will need an image – textless or not, either is fine – and the title and URL of your website destination. You can optimize this card in the same way you would optimize any other PPC ad, though you don’t have the space for ad copy here.
Ad copy comes when you add the card to a tweet. You need to create a new tweet and add the URL of the individual card you’re using to the end. This URL can be shortened using Twitter’s shortener, and won’t lose its functionality.
You can use Twitter cards with regular tweets, with promoted tweets or both. It’s typically a good idea to keep your cards up to date as your site and advertising change.
You can also use automatic generation for some website cards, in much the same way you can use automatic generation for link previews on Facebook. You need to add meta code to your pages specifying the information the Twitter card will use. Twitter will generate the code for you in the developers center, with the custom information you plug in. You will need to specify the card type and any assets it pulls, including images, which have to be hosted on your site to be displayed.
You didn’t think such a robust tool would exist without accompanying measurement tools, did you? Twitter provides a wealth of information for your cards just by visiting your cards analytics center. You can see:
- A snapshot of your overall card performance, with the number of tweets containing your card and how many were yours, the impressions from each and the clicks from each.
- The change in snapshot data over time, when impression, tweet and click volume rose or fell.
- A chart of the number of and clicks for each type of card you’ve used, comparing the seven types of cards. App cards are lumped together, but summary cards have two entries, one for small images and one for large.
- A readout of the widgets, websites and apps that are used to post your cards, if third party apps are used at all.
- Readings of the devices that see, click and repost your cards and in what proportions.
In short, everything you could want to see about the performance of your cards is at your fingertips.