Facebook 20% Rule

Facebook 20% Rule

Posted on 22 March 2016 by Aaron

For the past few years Facebook restricted the amount of text that could be shown in an image to be promoted or used as an advert. Any images that contained more than 20% text would be rejected. 

The reason this rule was in place was to try to keep adverts high quality and engaging rather than just bombarding users with text.

Facebook provided creatives with a Grid Tool that allowed you to upload the image you had created and it would automatically overlay a grid. If the text in your image was within more than 5 or the grid squares then you had more than 20% text.

On 22nd March 2016 Facebook decided to lose the 20% rule and go with an advised approach where they recommend what is and isn't acceptable when it comes to text on images.

The ideal in their eyes is that your image contains minimal text like a logo and a single headline message and the rest of the text you would include in the advert post.

Some might argue that this loosens the guidelines too much and we'll be back to a point where lots of adverts are not approved but I don't think so. The examples that Facebook give in their guidelines show clearly what would be approved or not and anyone with any common sense could follow this to create a successful advert.


Facebook have split the examples into four categories:

Image Text: OK


Image Text: Low


Image Text: Medium


Image Text: High


Exceptions to the Text Rule

What kind of text won't limit delivery

  • Movie Posters
  • Book Covers
  • Album Covers
  • Product Images - Where an entire product can be seen, and not just a zoomed in image of the product.
  • Posters for concerts/music Festivals, Comedy Shows or Sporting Events
  • Text-based Businesses Calligraphy, carton/comic strips, etc.
  • App & game screenshots
  • Legal text
  • Infographics


What's not allowed in my image? (does count as text)

  • Logos - Any text-based logo is counted as text regardless of its size or alignment
  • Watermark - Watermarks are considered as text, even if they're mandatory or as per their brand guidelines
  • Numbers - All numbers are considered as text

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