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Google now includes in their mobile search results an image for some pages (this is in addition to now including the favicon for every site). Google mostly uses the image specified by the open graph tag (although not always).

Are there any guidelines for how Google selects the image and is there a way to let Google know when the image has been updated (similar to Facebook’s Sharing Debugger that will re-scrape a website on request)?

Google shrinks the image they select to 104px by 104px, which doesn’t work well with Facebook (and LinkedIn) that likes a 1.91 to 1 image ration, so it would be nice to request Google to use a different image (the way WhatsApp uses the last op:image listed on the page).

I've included a screen capture showing how an image is included in the search results.

Screen capture for a Google search showing an image in the results.

Thanks

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As mentioned under https://developers.google.com/search/docs/data-types/article#non-amp.

* Repeated field of ImageObject or URL

* The URL to an image that is representative of the article. Only a marked-up image that 
directly belongs to the article should be specified. Images should be at least 696 pixels 
wide.

Additional image guidelines:

* Every page must contain at least one image (whether or not you include markup). Google 
will pick the best image to display in Search results based on the aspect ratio and 
resolution.
* Image URLs must be crawlable and indexable.
* Images must represent the marked up content.
* Images must be in .jpg, .png, or. gif format.
* For best results, provide multiple high-resolution images (minimum of 300,000 pixels when 
multiplying width and height) with the following aspect ratios: 16x9, 4x3, and 1x1.
  • – thanks for responding. When I posted my question, I had links on my pages to structured data images as well as OG images, but I was using the same images, so I couldn’t tell which one Google was using. I changed to unique images and saw that Google in one instance used a structured data image and in another an OG image. I posed the question to Google’s John Mueller. Google will use any image from the site: a structured data image, an Open Graph image, or an image from the site. While this isn’t helpful for branding, a 104px square image doesn’t have much branding power. – Rich DeBourke Jul 27 at 10:47

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