[Updated 2020] Facebook Tip: Organizing, Moving and Editing Your Photos And Albums

 


 

NOTE: This post has been fully updated recently. There were a lot of changes to the way Facebook allows for the moving of photos, so I updated all the steps and the screen captures. I hope they help!

Facebook has rolled out the new version of its desktop experience, so if you are on the new desktop version and you are confused about how to rearrange photos in your Facebook albums, be sure to pay attention to the updates at the end of the post.

Cheers!

–Sean


We all love to post photos on Facebook, right? The challenge is that while positing photos is easy to do from your phone or tablet, organizing them into albums within Facebook can be a real pain-in-the-you-know-what.

It seems that the Facebook User Experience Engineers have designed an organization system that seems logical to them, but in real life isn’t really intuitive to most of us.

A while back, I wrote a post about uploading and organizing your photos on Facebook. As Facebook made changes, I tried to keep it updated with the slight UI changes to the albums and photo organizers.

As I went to update for the umpteenth time…I realized that it would probably be better to just start a new post and give the most recent instructions without all the history.

Likely, I’ll have to update this one 15 times, too…but that’s the world of Facebook, right?

So if you’re just looking for tips on how to organize your photos, here are the most recent instructions.

Quick Note Before We Start: If you are trying to figure out how to move and organize photos in a Facebook GROUP, read this post instead.  

Creating a Facebook Album (also known as uploading a photo)

The first step in getting organized is making sure you have the right albums. Facebook doesn’t let you create albums on-the-fly while you’re organizing them, so the best thing to do is go through all your current folders and see if there are some logical groups.

Make a list. Yes…with a pencil and paper.

For me, the groups are basically family photos, pictures of good things to eat, critters who have visited my house, cute pet photos and cupcakes. Yes…I’m a bit of a cupcake fanatic so they get their own albums.

To create a new album just go into the Photos section of your Facebook profile and then click “Create Album”.

Create a new photo album in Facebook by going to your Photos sectiona and clicking Create AlbumCreate a new photo album in Facebook by going to your Photos sectiona and clicking Create Album

Facebook doesn’t provide an intuitive way to create an empty album (there is a way, but it ‘s strange), so it’s best to upload a photo into the new album. Don’t worry…you can delete it later if you don’t want to keep the photo in the album.

Add a new image to your new Facebook Adding a new photo to your Facebook album is pretty easy. 

Facebook does allow you to re-organize your photos and albums, it just takes some know-how. Click To Tweet

Once the photo is selected, give your album a new name and describe the types of photos that people can expect to see in the album when they browse it. If the album contains photos that were all taken in the same location (e.g. Hawaii or New York City) you can also add a location.

With respect to this album, these photos were all taken in Iceland, so I could add that geo-location to the album. If you’re interested in learning more about my visit to Iceland, you can read all about it via my blog series at FlatlandersIn.com

Add a name and description to your new Facebook albumAdd a new name and description to your new Facebook album and add any captions to your photos, if you’d like.

Just before you click the “Post Photos” button in the lower-right corner, be sure to set your privacy settings by clicking the gear icon and choose who can see the photos in the album. Remember, this privacy setting will be set for all the photos you are uploading.

Before creating the new album, set the appropriate permission levelsSet the appropriate level of permissions on your album. REMEMBER that these permissions will be applied to all photos in the album.

Once you click the “Post Photos” button, the new folder will be created and you’ll be able to move other photos into this album.

Making Your Photos On Facebook Private

I know it seems a bit repetitive and I covered a bit of it in the last section, but I have received so many questions about this that I feel like it’s worth breaking it out into its own section.

If you want to upload photos to Facebook and keep them completely private, meaning only you can see them, then it’s important that you set the privacy settings for that photo or album to “Only Me”.  By doing that, you are telling the Facebook application to never show that specific photo or album to anyone but you. 

Some of you might wonder why anyone would store completely private photos on Facebook, but there are actually some valid reasons like:

  • You use Facebook as a chronological journal of life events, but some of them are personal so you want to restrict their viewing
  • There might be some older photos that you added to Facebook in the past that you don’t want showing going forward
  • One person told me that they set some of their “wilder” photos to “Only Me” why they were searching for a new job. They felt this tamed down their Facebook profile a bit, limiting what their future employers might see. 

One thing that is important to note is that setting the privacy on a Facebook photo or album to “Only Me” isn’t truly a privacy protection. Because you are using the Facebook platform, you are granting Facebook the right to use your photos. 

From the Facebook terms of use:

β€œTo provide our services, though, we need you to give us some legal permissions to use that content. Specifically, when you share, post, or upload content that is covered by intellectual property rights (like photos or videos) on or in connection with our products, you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, and worldwide license to host, use, distribute, modify, run, copy, publicly perform or display, translate, and create derivative works of your content”

That means when you upload your photo, even with “Only Me” privacy set, Facebook could turn your photo into its next worldwide ad.

Just something to think about as you add new photos that you want to remain private to Facebook. 

Editing The Facebook Photo Album Name, Description, And The Photo Details

Just in case you made a mistake when editing your album name or details, there is a way to edit the album name and fix the mistake. You can even edit the pictures and their captions. To edit the album name, description, or the photo details inside an album:

Step 1 – From your Facebook profile, choose the “Photos” tab. This displays the listing of all the photos you have uploaded to Facebook.

Step 2 – From the photos page, click the Albums tab to show your photo albums.

Step 3 – Find the album that you would like to rename and click on the three dots in the lower-right corner of the album.

To rename a photo album or edit the description, first locate the album you want to editLocate the album that you want to change the name or description of and open the album menu.

Step 4 – From the menu that opens, click “Edit”. This takes you to the page where you can edit the name of the Facebook photo album, as well as the description. You can also edit the captions of any photo located within the Facebook photo album.

From the Facebook album edit page, you can change the name of a Facebook photo album, update the description or even edit the photo detailsFrom the album details page, you can edit the name of a Facebook album, update the album description, and even edit the photo captions.

Step 5 (REALLY IMPORTANT) – Be sure to click the “Save” button after you have made all your edits. This will save your album or photo changes.

Moving Photos Between Albums

Fairly recently, Facebook made a big improvement to their albums in the fact that they added the ability to move photos between albums. Previously, when you clicked on the edit pencil for the photo, the menu item did not include the ability to move a photo to another album, as shown in the image below.

After you click the Edit button, you can drag and drop the Facebook photos into any custom order you desirePreviously, Facebook did not give users the ability to move a photo from one album to another. 

Luckily, we now have an option to move photos!!!

As shown in the new image below, Facebook has added a menu item to “Move To Other Album”. 

You can now move Facebook photo from one album to anotherFacebook finally gave us an intuitive way to move a photo from one album to another.

To move a photo from one album to another, just click the “Move To Other Album” link in the dropdown menu. In the popup that opens, select the other album where you want the photo to be moved to. 

In the image below, my photo would be moved to the “Camelback Mountain” album. Once moved to that album, all the permissions for that album would be applied to the photo.

Choose the target album where you want to move your Facebook photoSelect the album where you want to move your Facebook photo to.

Once you move the photo, you will notice that it disappears from your new album, because Facebook moved it into the album that you selected.

The new Facebook album is empty because the photo has been moved to the target albumThe new album is empty because I moved the photo from the new album to the target destination.

Yeah…but can I move a Facebook photo into another album that already exists?

Certainly. If you already have a photo in an album that you want to move into another album, just do this:

1) First, decide on which album you want to move the existing photo from. You can see the full listing of your current albums by choosing the “Albums” section at the top of your photo gallery.

The albums section of your photos on FacebookThe albums section of you phot gallery will help you choose the album where the photo you want to move currently resides.

2) Next, click the album where the image currently resides. In my case, I am moving an image out of the “Camelback Mountain” album and back into the Iceland 2019 album.

3) Find the photo you want to move and locate the  small drop-down image in the upper-right corner. Click that and choose “Move To Another Album”

Select the Facebook photo and choose to move it to another albumJust edit the photo and choose to move it to another album.

 

4) Select the new album and then click “Move Photo” and you should be all set!

Move your photo to the new target album and you should be all set

Can I Rearrange The Order Of Photos In A Facebook Album?

This is always a popular question that I get, because people miss a step when they try to reorder or reorganize their Facebook photos inside an album. The trick is to be sure you click the edit button. 

If you want to change the order of the photos in your Facebook photo album, here’s what you do:

Step 1 – Locate the album that you want to edit and click the album to view it. 

Step 2 – Click the Edit button in the upper-right corner.

After you click the Edit button, you can drag and drop the Facebook photos into any custom order you desireIf you want to re-order the photos in one of your Facebook albums, be sure to click the Edit button.

Step 3 – In the edit view, you can now drag and drop the photos into any order you would like. 

Step 4 – Click the Save button to apply the changes. The photos should now be in the order you specified. 

Can I Choose Which Picture I Want To Be The Cover Photo For My Facebook Album?

You can….but once again it’s really important that you are in the edit view of the album. To change the picture that serves as the cover photo for your album, do this:

Step 1 – Locate the album that you want to edit and click the album to view it. 

Step 2 – Click the Edit button in the upper-right corner.

Step 3 – In the edit view, click the pencil icon to edit the specific photo that you want to become the cover photo for your album. 

Step 4 – From the dropdown menu, choose “Make Cover Photo”. 

Facebook allows you to choose which picture will serve as the cover photo for your album

Step 5 – Click the Save button to apply the changes to the album. The selected photo should now display as the cover photo. 

How Do I Delete Photos From A Facebook Album?

But what if a photo is just too embarrassing or isn’t something you want posted on Facebook anymore?

You can delete a photo by locating the photo, clicking the drop-down menu on the upper-right corner and selecting “Delete This Photo”.

Facebook will ask you to confirm, and then once you delete it…it’s gone from your albums. Keep in mind, however, that it may not be gone from Facebook forever, though.

Buckle up…here comes some legal-speak. But it’s important that you understand whether your Facebook photos are REALLY deleted from Facebook.

According to their terms of use the types of information Facebook collects from/about you is not limited to just your status updates, but also includes the photos  you upload:

Information we receive about you

We receive a number of different types of information about you, including:

Your information
Your information is the information that’s required when you sign up for the site, as well as the information you choose to share.

  • Registration information: When you sign up for Facebook, you are required to provide information such as your name, email address, birthday, and gender. In some cases, you may be able to register using other information, like your telephone number.
  • Information you choose to share: Your information also includes the information you choose to share on Facebook, such as when you post a status update, upload a photo, or comment on a friend’s story.
Be aware that even if you remove a photo from Facebook, they might still have the right to use it. Click To Tweet

This might seem silly to mention, but you’ll understand where I’m going with this when you read what you agree to allow Facebook to do with that information once you upload it to the site. In the “How we use the information we receive:” section of their Terms of Use, Facebook states:

Granting us this permission not only allows us to provide Facebook as it exists today, but it also allows us to provide you with innovative features and services we develop in the future that use the information we receive about you in new ways.

While you are allowing us to use the information we receive about you, you always own all of your information. Your trust is important to us, which is why we don’t share information we receive about you with others unless we have:

  • received your permission;
  • given you notice, such as by telling you about it in this policy; or
  • removed your name or any other personally identifying information from it.

So, while this sounds all well and good, what Facebook is saying is that once you upload a photo to Facebook, it is theirs to use as they please.

Why? Because they have already given you notice that they can use your photo because they have included notice about it in their terms of use. Circular and tricky, right? Right.

My point in telling you this is to remind you that just because you delete something from Facebook, doesn’t mean it’s gone forever. Who knows, that embarrassing photo of you at the office party might actually show up in Facebook’s marketing materials because you uploaded the photo and Facebook chose to include it under their “innovative features and services we develop in the future…” clause.

Just to set the expectation, understand that something uploaded to and then deleted from Facebook isn’t necessarily deleted forever.

Hopefully, that helps clear up the process of adding/editing/moving/deleting photos within your Facebook albums. If you see something that isn’t clear or have an additional tip to help others out, be sure to leave a comment!

Cheers!

–Sean


Update 1 – From A Reader Question

I recently received an email about this post asking about the privacy settings. The reader asked:

Once you make a Facebook photo or album private using the “Only Me” setting, is it possible to go back later and make the Facebook photos public again?

The answer is a definite Yes! At least until Facebook changes things again.

To make your Facebook photos public, just follow the instructions above to edit the album and then just set the privacy of the photo or the album to Public, Friends, or whatever custom privacy setting that would suit your needs. To learn a little more about Facebook privacy settings, this post might help

I hope that helps!

–Sean


Update 2 – Issues relating to the new beta version of Facebook

Quite a few folks have been mentioning that the ability to re-arrange photo albums and move photos between albums has been removed in the beta view of the new “dark mode” and “light mode” version of Facebook.

If you have decided to proceed with using the beta version of Facebook (beta meaning that it is not their production version and is not fully tested), be aware that you are likely going to lose these capabilities.

Hopefully, before they move the beta version to their fully-supported production version, they will return these features once again.

The way you can tell if you are on the beta version is to visit Facebook.com in a web browser (not the app) and click your profile photo in the upper-right corner. If the menu has “switch to classic Facebook” as an option, then you are on the beta view.

Switch Facebook back to classic view

Once you switch back to classic Facebook, you should have the ability to organize Facebook albums and move photos between albums again.

If you do choose to switch back, but sure to send feedback that the ability to move photos and organize Facebook photo albums has gone missing from the beta so they know we need these features. Here’s an image of my feedback that you can replicate.

The new Facebook beta is missing the ability to organize photo albums and move photos between albums

Update 3 – Facebook is forcing the new view, so we have to adapt and identify how to reorganize photos in our albums

While there are some tricks for forcing Facebook back to the classic view (see some of the comments below), it’s obvious that Facebook is moving forward, so we have to figure out how to rearrange photos in Facebook albums in the new Facebook layout.

It looks like the functionality still exists, but it’s a little different. Facebook implemented a drag-and-drop model that seems to work. 

To edit the order of your photos in the NEW Facebook desktop layout (not in the mobile app):

Step 1 – Login to the Facebook desktop via your favorite browser. I am using Firefox in the example images below.

Step 2 – Click your profile and then click “Albums” near the top of your profile.

To organize your photos in an album in the new Facebook layout, first choose to view your albums

Step 3 – Click into the album that you want to edit. In this case, I am editing my “Camelback Mountain – Phoenix 2019” album. Take a look below and you will see that the first image in the album is one that shows that Piestawa Peak is a double-black diamond hike.

The second photo in the album is one that has a red arrow saying “we’re going way up there”. You’ll see both of those image have red boxes around them because I drew those boxes to help you see which is first and which is second.

The initial view of my Facebook photo album before I reordered the pictures

Step 4 – In the upper-right corner, click the three dots to open a menu and choose “Edit Album”.

Choose to edit your Facebook photo album in order to re-order the photos in it

Step 5 – In the edit album mode, you can now just drag and drop your images into the order that you want them. For instance, in the image below, I drug the image with the arrow to the first position, which automatically moved the double-diamond image to the second image.

There is no need to save the change, because it is instantly applied once you move the photo to the new location.

By dragging and dropping the photos in edit mode for the album, I was able to rearrange their order in the new Facebook layout

Step 6 – Exit the edit album view, but clicking the back arrow in the upper-left corner to return to the regular album view. You can also just press the Esc key on your keyboard.

My photo album has been rearranged in the new Facebook layout

Check it out! The photos in my Facebook album have now been reordered and the photo with the arrow is now in the first slot.

Using those steps, you should be able to fully rearrange the photos in your Facebook album in any order you desire.

One other note that some people seem to be confused about. Facebook doesn’t display the order of the albums in traditional left-to-right. As a result, some people are thinking that Facebook isn’t applying the changes. It is, it’s just ordering them in a different order than you are wanting.

To see what I mean, here is an image that shows the order of the photos in the album I edited above. It shows that Facebook shows image #1 in the upper-left and then image #2 in the lower-left. Then, it puts #3, #4, and #5 in the right column stacked.

The order of photos in the Facebook feed view once they have been organized

Confusing, I know…but Facebook does what Facebook wants.

I hope that help!


Keep those comments coming as you see changes. It helps all of us understand the changes that are happening at Facebook and the impact to features like photo albums.

Cheers!

–Sean


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There are lots of ways to organize your Facebook photo albums. Here are tips on arranging them.
There are plenty of ways to edit, arrange, and organize your Facebook photo albums. Here are a few tips
Facebook tip - organizing your albums and photos

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Comments And Reactions

  1. I used to be able to add a Wall photo to an album AFTER posting it. I can’t find a way to do this anymore. Any idea how to do it?

  2. Hi, i’ve tried to move photos posted in a previous post (multiple photos post) to a newly created album. That seems to be impossible; no option to move to another album are present in the ingle photos, or in the post modification options.
    Do you have any hints on that?
    Thanks
    Luca

  3. Do you know a way to move photos posted by a page from “Mobile Uploads” to a pre-made album?
    I used to be able to post from the app to an album to keep things organized, but the app update removed that option and uploads to this “mobile” album.
    The tips mentioned above work for the other albums, but not “Mobile Uploads”.
    Thanks in advance

  4. Mike Virgintino says

    The new FB does not let me move newly posted photos from the timeline into designated albums. I have been asking for this all along while reverting back to the classic format. This is a public memory page and it is imperative that all posted photos be placed in respective folders. What do I do? Thanks.

  5. Thanks so much for your explanation of how to re-order photos within an album. But how do I now (as used to be available with drag-and-drop) re-order the albums? Having edited the order of photos in one album, it now shows as the most recent, which I don’t want. How do I get it back to where it was?

  6. I still cant see how to make sure the latest post of images into an album puts it at the top – NOT AT THE BOTTOM each time … to physically move them to the top is onerous if there are hundreds of images. is there a way to make sure the latest upload goes to the top of the album. please.

  7. Nikolaos Prodromidis says

    Hi!
    Is there a way to sort photos by date taken? This feature was on the old interface (it was needed to add at least one more contributor to the album)
    Now this feature disappeared or somehow is hidden!
    Thanks in advance!

  8. I run a group an people post photos but I want them in the photo album can I copy/move them into the album ?

  9. I have posted a bunch of videos on my facebook profile over the past few months. Now I want to organize them into a single album. That appears to NOT be possible unless the videos already existed in an album – and mine don’t. Is there any way to organize these into a single album? Please do let me know. Thank you in advance!

  10. Devon C Truax says

    i am trying to down load my facebook picture album to my desk top (so i can eventually upload and make a photo book) any suggestions?

  11. Kathryn Keller says

    Sadly, Facebook still doesn’t allow Group Admins to move photos between albums and moving photos around inside an album no longer works.

  12. Rebecca Talbot says

    Also having the same problem Tom mentioned – cannot post photos into Albums. Used to be able to select the album when writing the post, but this option has gone πŸ™

  13. Pete Caulfield says

    HI. I have my main profile under which the move to another album option appears just as you described, but I also have a page for my artwork and have an album titled “Gallery.”

    I want to move photos from my timeline and mobile uploads albums into the gallery but the edit pencil and move options do not appear. I can only assume that Facebook doesn’t allow this on pages. What do you think?

  14. I’ve been trying to move photo’s from one album to another in facebook and I don’t have the options you mention/my facebook doesn’t look like this… Have a newer update? How can I check this? I’ve looked on Facebook and they don’t have an answer or support section that covers this….

  15. RICARDO RIVERA says

    I tried all the steps to rearrange photos within an album. However after I hit edit , I click the picture and move it to the spot I want it to go. The pictures switch but After I release the photo it goes back to the same previous spot.

  16. chad valentine says

    I have about 30,000 photos from the last 14 years on facebook in a huge monolithic photos list. I want to move them into folders. I make a new folder – go to add photos and it will only let me upload photos, it doesnt give me the opportunity to move photos from my photos in faebook to the folder. Please help!

  17. Well I tried the Click, Drag, Drop to rearrange my photos in my (personal, not group) album but it is NOT working – it give the little not allowed symbol – O with the / strike mark thru it πŸ™ – I can drag it but it is not allowed to drop πŸ™ I am in Firefox, going to try Chrome just in case, even Edge if I get desperate. Date is 1/5/21 – perhaps there in new madness afoot πŸ™ – also the photos all seem to just want me to tag people

  18. Holy Cow it’s a FireFox Issue!!!!!!!!!
    If you are trying to rearrange photos and are in Firefox try Chrome!!!!
    Aggggggggggggh!

  19. Ok nevermind – it was a ME issue – apparently you have to move it over a photo instead of between the two photos you want to put it between (because that would be logical!!!)
    It works in both Firefox and in Chrome!!!! Oi – I’m going to bed now – after wasting oven an hour on this and a lot of curse words LOL!
    But thank you so much for your page confirming what I thought we were doing in 2020 – even though it didn’t seem to be working for me tonight.

  20. Nathaniel Sy says

    Greetings.

    I’m encountering this issue with FB since probably Oct. 2020. When adding photos on a facebook photo album I created, it will treat the new photo set as a new post in the timeline. Instead of directing my FB friends to the original album with the intention of accumulating likes and comments there, the result would always be new likes and comments on every new photos set added.

    Mr. Sean, could you provide a solution for this concern? Thank you.


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