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Twitter link preview has old Etsy product images fixed

Hi guys! I ran into a problem on Twitter today. I updated most of my product images yesterday, but the Twitter link preview card that appears when you post on Twitter was still showing my old one. Frustrating!

However, as with the Facebook Etsy shop announcement cache issue, there is a simply solution. And this one is even quicker than the solution for the Facebook issue.

Literally all you have to do is go to the Twitter Card validator, input your listing’s web address and click the “Preview Card” button. Voila! Problem solved :D Go back to your tweet that was showing the old photo and press Ctrl+F5 (this reloads the page and gets new copies of everything from that page in case your computer had stored a cached copy). You should now see the new photo!

 

Screenshot of a refreshed Twitter link preview using the Twitter Card Validator tool
Screenshot of a refreshed link preview using the Twitter Card Validator tool

 

Why does the Twitter link preview not show new content?

When sites like Facebook and Twitter show these previews of the linked page, they aren’t just linking to the image from the site, e.g. the image on Etsy’s servers. They actually store a copy of the preview image and text on their own servers, so that they can rely on the speed of their own servers to load them up to viewers, who are essentially their customers.

These stored copies are known as a cache and will have a set time in which they expire. Until that expiry date/time is hit, they will not even look at the page for fresh content. This is a very standard practice in the computing world, since it uses a lot of valuable server resource to go and fetch these images and text extracts every time someone links to something.

The problem is that although these caches do expire, in some cases they do not expire at a time convenient to us and our new content. In all honesty I’m surprised and impressed that Facebook and Etsy have a way to override this cache, since it could be used maliciously to overload servers (though I assume at some point it will complain at you for using the tool too often).

I hope that other Etsy sellers see this post and my previous post and that it has helped someone! I have a degree in Computer Science and these sorts of issues still frustrate me. Even more so, finding the right page to overcome this caching issue was only possible for me because I knew the technical jargon to use in my search.

If this has helped you, please leave a comment below so that I know! ♥

Posted on

Fix Facebook link preview showing old Etsy shop announcement

Hi guys! I quite often see people on Facebook wondering why, when they make a post, it shows an old version of their Etsy shop announcement in the link previews. I always knew why this happened – Facebook saves (caches) a version of the text so they don’t have to go and look it up every time, which saves them precious server resources. However, I never knew how to fix the problem. Until now!

I have discovered a great tool provided by Facebook themselves, the Facebook Debugger Tool. Here are the simple steps for clearing out the old version of your Etsy shop announcement and getting the new version cached.
 

Instructions

  1. Go to the tool and enter your Etsy shop address in the text box and click “Debug“. You need to be logged in to Facebook.
  2. Scroll down until you see the “og:description” row. This is your shop announcement. Check if the text is correct. If it is, you’re all good! If it’s an old version of your Etsy shop announcement, follow the next step.
  3. Scroll back up to the box where you entered your shop address. You will see a new button “Fetch new scrape information“. Click this and Facebook will go off and re-read your Etsy shop page, including your announcement. Re-check the announcement text via Step 2, it should now be correct!

Et voila! The next time you post your Etsy shop to Facebook the link preview will show the correct shop announcement. If you follow these steps each time you change your Etsy shop announcement and the Facebook link preview will always be correct. :)
 

Can I help?

If you have any other technology / internet related problems please get in touch, I may be able to help you. Please leave a comment below of email me at gaby [at @] eldriscreations.com