We’ve setup and have working a twitter feed using the API. No real problems getting it working and we are sending regular traffic updates to our followers with no real problems. We generate and upload a new traffic image every few minutes and it works well.
Our issue is that the users have to click through the Tweet to get an expanded view and THEN click again on the URL to get to the detail on our website. That at least one click too many. You can see the issue here
So we looked at Twitter Cards, worked through the API and got those working or at least we thought we had. We then discovered that:
Most (all?) third party Twitter Clients don’t support Twitter Cards at all and simply display a URL and thats it.
The IOS and Android Twitter clients expand the Twitter Card by default. The web based Twitter Client doesn’t expand. This appears to be by design. I am unclear as to what research Twitter have done that says presenting a URL to the user rather than expanding a URL is actually a better user experience.
It appears that the only way to get a Twitter Card expanded in the timeline is to pay for it to be promoted, but that doesn’t appear to be stated anywhere.
We cannot see any way to have a Tweet have a number of fallbacks for different clients. e.g. If displayed on an IOS Twitter client, the Twitter Card is displayed, if on a 3rd party client then the card is ignored and a tweet and an attached image is displayed. We may have missed a page showing how to do this.
Our view is that Twitter Cards are actually pretty pointless unless you use an official Twitter Client AND pay for the Tweets to be promoted. Otherwise all you get is worse than a normal Tweet in that all the user sees is a URL and thats it. If you add pictures and stuff like that to try and make the user experience ‘richer’ the Twitter Cards seem to stop working.
We cannot believe this is what Twitter think so we must be missing something important here. Surely Twitter Cards are more use than this? They look great but are so limited that its not worth doing as they will not work in many cases.
Any advice welcomed as we’re struggling to see the value of Twitter Cards,