Are you looking for the latest Twitter header sizes? If you are, then you are at the right place. In this guide, I will take you through the latest Twitter cover sizes and also provide Photoshop templates for free, so that you can save a ton of time. This post goes into different aspects of building a visually appealing Twitter profile that also stays loyal to the brand’s vision. If you are a marketer or a designer looking forward for this, I guarantee, you will not be disappointed once you finish this post. Let’s get started!
The last change in the Twitter’s cover image dimension has made it responsive and also increased the scale of the profile picture. One of my old posts from a year ago, mentioned about those changes, but this time, I wanted to do a deep dive into the design guidelines and make it clear for you to get started in optimizing your Twitter profile for maximum visual impact.
With the new layout of the profile you will have more flexibility in displaying images on desktop and mobile as the cover image is responsive. With a bigger profile picture, the profile looks more visually appealing now.
Twitter Header Sizes -Taming the Ever-Changing Monsters
Yes, I called it a monster because the size keeps changing and it’s hard to predict how and when it will change. The last changes were picked up very late by most users leaving them with blurred header images for a few months if they had not updated.
The new Twitter header size at full width is 1040 px at the lowest resolution screens. Before you jump right away and load up your photoshop or gimp, let me warn you something. Don’t design for the minimum size!!!
They are responsive and will scale to bigger monitors and resolutions, but will be blurry due to lack of pixel resolution. In order to get the header size right, you need to design them in the dimensions of 1500px X 500px and try to keep the dpi to 150dpi in a raster program like Photoshop. I would suggest that you leave 150px to 200px padding on both left and right of your header for Twitter. You could use the following technique to create an image that works well with the new Twitter header dimensions.
Create a canvas or document size for 1903px wide and 605px in height. You can then place your 1500px by 500px cover image into this document to create a padding on all sides. This will prevent cropping, once uploaded.
The maximum image size shouldn’t be more than 10MB, this used to be 5MB. You can reduce the size of Twitter cover image using this method mentioned below.
You do not have to worry about the resolution when working on illustrator or vector programs but make sure that you export it in at least 150dpi and in RGB mode. Most of the time the vector programs that are used for designing print materials are set in CMYK mode. Something to remember, always.
Checking Color Mode in Adobe Photoshop
Settings to check mode in Photoshop
Checking Export Settings in Adobe Illustrator
Another factor that you must remember during the design process is the cropping. Twitter crops the top and bottom part of the uploaded header image by almost 50px to 60px respectively from top and bottom.
I know, it’s a headache to check everything and start from scratch, so I have created a set of templates with designs that you can start using right away.
Twitter Header Sizes Template Download
if you like the templates, please share it and tweet about it!
I have also compiled a list of tools that you can use to create Twitter header images from scratch or using the PNG template. I have included in the Downloadable Template File. These tools can be great even when you are on travel and just want to create quick cover image in the right dimensions.
List of applications for Twitter Cover image creation
Now let’s check out each one of these tools.
1. PicMonkey lets you create images with different frames and effects.
They even have free font types to use in the image-creation process. You can add images, add text, special effects and also resize images at your will. Very useful when creating Twitter header covers as well as other social media visuals.
Here is sign up page for PicMonkey
Check out the creation of Twitter Cover Banner with PicMonkey.
2. PixTeller can be used to create any type of image online.
You can choose from a wide range of design layouts and create collages with graphics. You can upload images and also use edit wide collection of library items.
Another advantage just like Picmonkey, PixTeller lets you create text overlays with customizable fonts, colors and styles. You can also enable borders, photo effects and filters on your image using this tool.
Here is sign up page for PixTeller
3. Canva is an amazing tool that can be used for free.
You can create all kinds of designs and graphics with this tool, from posters to business cards. Availability of different social media image templates make it a breeze to create amazing social visuals in minutes. It is a lifesaver when you are on the move and need to post an image that doesn’t look like you are posting from 1990s.
4. Powerpoint –Yes, the good old Powerpoint where you create presentations. You can use it to create custom graphics. You will most probably have it in your computer if you are on windows. If you are on Mac, you can use Keynote.
[More design tutorials and templates coming soon for PowerPoint Users]
Saving Files from Image Editing Applications
When saving the file as mentioned before, save in RGB mode and make sure you save in PNG. Settings for optimum resolution in export. Do not even think of compressing your image when exporting from Photoshop as Twitter will itself compress the image and it will look like a mess. Believe me, been there , done that. Even though you upload the image in PNG , Twitter will compress and convert to a JPG.
Another problem with Twitter compression is that Small fonts, watermarked texts etc. gets blurred after the compression. If you are using an image with text, make sure that they are not very small or thin in font style.
Changing your Twitter cover is as easy as always, just click your edit profile link once you are logged in. See screenshot below:
Again, let me remind you that Twitter WILL let you upload a smaller resolution image, but NEVER let it fool you. You should always upload an image with at least 1500px width and 500px height. Remember cropping!!!
Updating Your New Twitter Header Sizes
Now you have the new image uploaded and cropped. Click the Apply button and save the changes. Always do a check of the profile after you make a change as browsers don’t respond properly all the time to commands. So make sure your changes are applied properly. If you find something that is not right, just edit the header image again.
Latest Twitter Display Picture Sizes for 2017
The infamous egghead and your brand. I know you are not silly enough to leave your profile picture blank with the default egghead, you are more clever than that for sure if you have found this post. Let us jump right into fixing the display picture and making your profile look more dynamic.
Coming back to our profile, we are reminded of our new Twitter Profile picture. These changes also have been updated is a refreshing change. The new dimensions of the profile picture is 400px X 400px. So basically it’s a square. You can download the template for Photoshop below. The display picture has a white border as shown below. After uploading, you can reposition and zoom the display picture just like the cover image.The maximum image size shouldn’t be more than 2MB.
Twitter Image Upload Guidelines
Even though the Twitter header sizes are responsive, the display picture stays the image on all devices as far as my test can tell. The display picture scales down to different sizes as required, but not scaled up, which is good in terms of avoiding blurred images. Good work Twitter, why don’t you do that for the header. Don’t let us upload low resolution images for the sake of the world and our brands!
Once you upload, make sure the profile picture and the Twitter cover image go well together. If they do, well and good, and if not, just make the required changes and re-upload again.
In case you don’t upload a header image,you will have a solid color background as per your preset theme color. It is recommended that you have a good branding which is consistent throughout your marketing channels.
Importance of Custom Twitter Profile Header
Your Twitter Header Cover and Profile picture is one of the most viewed elements on your profile. This is your first and best chance to create a brand image when a prospect visits your page. They evaluate your brand from the visual experience they receive from your brand’s presence on Twitter if they are touching your brand for the first time.
Make sure that you have your bio section filled out properly as users search your brand or name on Twitter to find just to get some basic information like what your brand is about, your website,services, location etc.
Even though this post is not about creating better Twitter profile, I have mentioned about optimizing your profile because without an optimized profile, an amazing cover image or display picture will not bring engagement or followers for long. You can read more about customizing your Twitter Profile here
Increasing Engagement on Your Twitter Profile
If you are on a quest to improve and increase your Twitter traffic, then I would highly recommend “Twitter Traffic Booster” by Igman Baron. He is one of the top Twitter marketing experts I have ever met. I truly admire the quality of his case studies and have been following his courses for a few years now. These case studies are done in real time and are up-to-date. Here is my complete review on Twitter Traffic Booster that was released in August, 2017.
In ‘Twitter Traffic Booster’ Igman reveals his method through which he got 329,000 Tweet Impressions and 5000 Targeted Followers from scratch in 28 days with several similar results. It’s worth trying out if you are serious about building a brand on Twitter that has engagement.
You can grab a copy of this case study here. You will learn a lot about increasing traffic to your websites from twitter and also how to build very targeted and high quality followers rather than some bots that are of no good use.
Coming back to our topic of Twitter header sizes, I would like to show you how a new Twitter profile is branded and filled out from scratch. For this tutorial, I will take a fictional brand as usual – [brandname]
Frequenlty Asked Question:
Question:I uploaded my image in the mentioned dimensions of 1500px X 500px. I still get a blurry image, why is it so?
Answer:Even if you uploaded the right sizes for the header, you should always make sure that you are exporting the image at the best possible quality. Check the above section on exporting images in Photoshop and Illustrator respectively.
Question:I do not understand how to use the grids and guides on Photoshop for safe area. How do I get this to work safely?
Answer:I have included a hidden layer named “Safe Area” in the template file for Photoshop and Illustrator. You just need to enable them while working and delete/hide while exporting your final output in full resolution to keep the content within the safe area.
Question:I do not have Photoshop, how do i use these templates?
Answer:You can use any software to work with these templates pack for Twitter. Just download the files, unzip and you can find different file types. In case you do not have any software that are mentioned here, just open the PNG image in MS Paint or gimp. Follow the tutorial below to get the header created according to the latest header size.
Question:Could you recommend some cool Twitter headers?
Answer:Yes, here is a collection of cool twitter headers in different niches. I have gone an extra mile and added the respective template for the new twitter header dimensions for these designs. Put them to good use!
Question: Could you show how you can edit the header image on a mobile device?
Answer: Just follow the step by step instructions and images below:
Question:Could you show how you can edit the header image on an iPad?
Answer: Sure, just follow the step- by-step instructions and images below for updating your profile picture and header on iPad:
Question: I follow the guidelines from Twitter and I still can’t get the header to display properly, will these mentioned sizes work?
Answer: This happens because of the cropping, image resolution and the display picture adjustments. If you follow the guidelines above, there should be no reason for your Twitter Header Cover to be misaligned or displayed incorrectly.
Question:Can I upload GIF images as my Twitter Cover image?
Answer: Yes, you can upload JPEG, JPG, PNG and GIF but animated GIFs are not supported by Twitter at the moment of writing this post. I would recommend PNG format.
Question: Does compression of images by Twitter affect the quality when displayed on the profile? Does it have a major impact?
Answer: Yes, it does affect the quality. here you can find two tests that I have done. One for the display picture and the other for the Twitter cover photo.
Question:I am using my Twitter Account for my personal branding, should I use a professional photograph?
Answer: That depends on your goal and your personal branding objectives. In my suggestion, no matter what the objective or style of photo or image you use, never use low quality or copyrighted images. It just leaves a bad impression on your visitor’s mind about your profile, your brand, and yourself.
Question: I am a designer, should I think of some design principles while designing the cover image?
Answer: Just like any image that you design, make sure that you have good balance of elements, it is not required to have rules like rule of third or golden ratio or anything complex for a basic cover image. If you are a designer and designing for a brand that has guidelines, please carefully study the usage of the colors, fonts and ratios between elements. In case you are not aware of the guidelines, always ask for it before you get started to avoid confusions later.
Question:I am using 1500px x 421px over 1500 x 500px, it seems to work. Do I need to change the dimensions to match the new Twitter header sizes?
Answer: I tested it out and 1500px works better.
Question:Where can I get Images for my Twitter Cover ?
Answer: You can get free (royalty free) images and paid stock images. I have compiled a small list below for both:
1. Free Stock Photos
2. Paid Stock Galleries
Question:Can I use icons inside my Twitter profile bio?
Answer: Yes ofcourse, what’s fun on Twitter without emojis. You can use emojis, hashtags, handles, and urls.
Question:Could you recommend some styles to base my Header images?
Answer: There are 100s of styles that you can follow according to your brand’s identity, but here are a few that I personally think can be used by anyone , if they do not know where to start the design thinking-process from.
You can keep your cover banner to bare minimum with solid color, but that might look very boring. Instead, you could create a logo based watermarked cover image that will suit your brand and will go well with your display picture. Below you can find an example I designed for our imaginary company [company name]
2. Deliver Your Message
Your Twitter cover image is your virtual real estate, put it to good use and deliver your brand’s message. It can be slogan, headline or even just conveying a message to your target audience. Always follow the KISS system of Keep it Simple Silly to create elegant, but powerful messages that can be used on your header. If you have a slogan on your logo and you have to cut it out due to the lack of space in your display picture, you can use the full version of your logo on the cover image.
Below you can find an example for the same [company name]
3. Expose Your campaigns
This space is advertising space as explained before so you can use this space to advertise your marketing campaigns to create more exposure and as you build a larger follower base, the new users will get to know about your products and services the way you want them to.
Below you can find an example I designed for our imaginary company [company name]
4. Showcase your products
This is one of my favorite style. It is obvious that you need to advertise your products but you can not push all your products down the prospects throat. At the same time, you will have a pure winner or a product that performing the best among your product catalog, highlight that product on the header. If you have to highlight a product on your header image and you have no idea, look back to your website. What are you highlighting on your website or landing pages? Do you have slides on your product displaying or highlighting a product?
If you still can’t find one, you need to think deeply about your products and services before you plan your promotion on social media.
5. Highlight your USPs
Every player in the market requires a USP to compete with competition. If your USP is one of those that put you way ahead of your competition, take out that weapon and use on your Twitter Cover image. This is your brand’s space and put the word out there about your uniqueness and why your customers should choose you over your competitor.
6. Reach Your Audience
An image can convey more than 1000 words and if you have pinned down your ideal customer avatar for your products or brand, then this will be a piece of cake for you. For example, if you have brand that is about dog food, then you could reach your audience emotionally through an image that conveys the bond between a K9 and his master.
6.Go Black & White
Yes, Grayscale can be interesting when it comes to Twitter cover images. I have tested a few of them and with the blue color scheme. A grayscale header looks soft and subtle with a colorful display picture. You can see an example below:
7. Dark & Bright
No, this is not the same black and white even though it sounds the same, every brand has a color or shades of colors to be precise. You can play with complementary colors or shades of a same brand color to create interesting headers that work well with your branded posts as well as the display picture.
8. Event Highlights
If you have been part of a major industry event or your company took part in a recent tradeshow or event, it would a good choice to highlight your stall, booth or presence in the event through the header, especially if it’s a major industry event. This will position yourself being one of the major brands in the industry as you will be sharing presence with other industry players.
9. Seasonal Message & Greetings
It is always better to care and greet your visitors especially when it is a festive season. You can use the the header space to share seasonal greetings with your followers. Here are a few templates based on seasons and festivals to download for major seasons & holidays; you can thank me later!
I am not sure if that word exists, but without taking the pain to do a Google search, I am explaining what it means here. If you are creating a hashtag based on your brand or your Twitter handle, you can just use the tag on the header. Again, this is your virtual real estate, so use it wisely.
Popular Twitter Pages & Their Headers
Let’s look at some of the world-famous brands and their Twitter cover image to see if we can identify any of the styles mentioned above and how they look in the new Twitter header sizes.
2. British Airways
Facts to remember:
1. The new Twitter header sizes are important as they will be cropped by Twitter, the main cover is 1500px X 500px and it’s responsive.
2. The display picture size is 400px X 400px . This is not responsive and stays the same size on all devices.
3. Make sure that you align your content ( logo, face) to the center of your profile picture to avoid being cut from Twitter’s own compress and cropping.
Hope this post has helped you in understanding the basics of designing and uploading a good quality profile cover according to the latest Twitter header sizes of 2017. If you have any feedback or questions, please feel free to share it through the comments below.