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How to Add Post Attachment as Featured Image in WordPress

Do you want to make images from posts the featured image without setting them manually?

This can save a lot of time if you recently started displaying featured images on your website and most of your older posts don’t have one.

In this article, we’ll show you how to use post attachments as featured images in WordPress.

How to Add Post Attachment as Featured Image in WordPress

Why Add Post Attachments as Featured Images?

Almost all WordPress themes come with built-in support for featured images and display them beautifully across the different areas of your WordPress website.

They help build user engagement and increase pageviews, and may be displayed in search results and social media news feeds.

But if you recently switched to a theme that displays featured images, then adding thumbnails to all of your previous posts could be a lot of work.

Wouldn’t it be handy if you could just use an image from a post itself as the featured image? It may even save you a little effort when publishing future posts.

With that being said, let’s have a look at how to use post attachments as featured images.

How to Add Post Attachment as Featured Image in WordPress

First thing you need to do is install and activate the Easy Add Thumbnail plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Once activated, the plugin works out of the box and there are no settings for you to configure. It automatically sets the featured image in two ways.

First, when you publish a new post it checks for a featured image. If it does not find one, then it looks for the first image attached to the post and sets it as a featured image.

Featured Image Added Automatically

Secondly, it sets a featured image for your older posts when they are viewed for the first time. At that time, the plugin looks for images attached to a post and uses the first image as the featured image.

Troubleshooting Adding Post Attachments as Featured Image

You may find some posts where Easy Add Thumbnail didn’t set a featured image.

The plugin will only use images uploaded and inserted into a particular post. So if you added an image to your post that was already in your media library, then the plugin will not be able to show it as a featured image.

It will also not show any external images as featured images. This means you may want to import external images to your site.

You may also find that some of the featured images are the wrong size, or look too stretched or skewed. In that case, you will need to regenerate thumbnails to make sure that older images are available in image sizes used by your WordPress theme.

We hope this tutorial helped you learn how to use post attachments as featured images in WordPress. You may also want to learn how to create a free business email address, or check out our list of 27 proven tips to increase your blog traffic.

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Reader Interactions

6 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Fantastic. I’m working with a new Genesis framework child theme, and although I’m a pretty good coder, I had no clue where to go in the framework to accomplish this. Great plugin. Thanks!

  2. I have used a Slider at the top of my core site pages. I do not have (or want) images on the page other than the slider at the top. How do I set this slider image to be the image that shows up on social media without it showing up on the page. I know how to do this on standard pages, but I have never tried it outside of that. It’s probably a template issue that will require scripting, but I wanted to double check before I got too far. I can’t find anything that seems to address this issue.

  3. I have been working on learning WP for the past few weeks, but there are so many issues that arise. I hv looked at video after video, even You Tube videos, some are helpful but are time consuming. I would like to be able to build websites and was wondering If there Is a course in my city or a mentor that could provide direction.


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