How to Set a Default Fallback Image for WordPress Post Thumbnails

Do you wish to use a different image as the default fallback for WordPress post thumbnails? Featured photos, also known as post thumbnails, are a great way to engage people and increase the visibility of your content on social media. We’ll show you how to establish a default backup image for WordPress post thumbnails in this article.

WordPress has a default image for post thumbnails.

Why Do You Need a WordPress Post Thumbnail as a Fallback?

A WordPress theme feature called post thumbnails or featured pictures allows you to associate an image with a blog post or article. This image is then utilized on the homepage, archives, or sidebar widgets, depending on your theme.

Some WordPress themes use a grid style to display post thumbnails and excerpts on the homepage. If you fail to include a thumbnail in a post, the article will appear without one, and your layout will seem broken.

Without a post thumbnail, the layout is broken.

You can use a branded picture as a fallback image if no post thumbnail is available by uploading a fallback image. You can use this to ensure that all of your articles have a post thumbnail.

Using the Require Featured Image plugin is another option for dealing with this issue. It requires all authors to provide a featured image in their articles before they are published.

After that, let’s look at how to quickly and easily set a default fallback picture for WordPress post thumbnails.

Method 1: Using the Plugin, set the default fallback image for post thumbnails.

This method is simpler and more user-friendly.

The first step is to download and activate the Default Featured Image plugin. See our step-by-step guide on installing a WordPress plugin for more information.

You must go to the Settings » Media page after activation to configure plugin settings.

Featured picture default settings

You must utilize the ‘Select default featured image’ option on this page to upload or select the image you want to use as your backup post thumbnail.

After you’ve chosen your featured image, don’t forget to click the save changes option.

You may now see it in action on your website. For articles that don’t have a featured picture defined, the plugin will use your default fallback image as the post thumbnail.

Method 2: Manually add a fallback image as a post thumbnail.

This solution necessitates the inclusion of code in your WordPress theme files.

To begin, you must first generate an image to serve as the default picture. Then, using an FTP program, upload it to your theme’s images folder.

The pictures folder for your theme is stored in the /wp-content/themes/yur-theme/ folder. You must create the images folder if it does not already exist.

After you’ve submitted the picture to your site, you’ll need to tell WordPress to seek for it if a post doesn’t have its own thumbnail.

Post thumbnails are displayed in several locations in your WordPress theme. The post thumbnail() is a method that can be found in theme files. Archive.php, single.php, and content templates are common places to look for it.

After that, paste the following code where you want the post thumbnail to appear.

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<?php if ( has_post_thumbnail() ) {
the_post_thumbnail();
} else { ?>
<img src="<?php bloginfo('template_directory'); ?>/images/default-image.jpg" alt="<?php the_title(); ?>" />
<?php } ?>

That’s it; you can now go to your website to see how it works. Replace default-image.jpg with the name of your chosen picture file.

Method 3: As a Post Thumbnail, use the first image in an article.

This solution necessitates the addition of code to your WordPress theme files.

To begin, add this code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin’s functions.php file.

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//function to call first uploaded image in functions file
function main_image() {
$files = get_children('post_parent='.get_the_ID().'&post_type=attachment
&post_mime_type=image&order=desc');
  if($files) :
    $keys = array_reverse(array_keys($files));
    $j=0;
    $num = $keys[$j];
    $image=wp_get_attachment_image($num, 'large', true);
    $imagepieces = explode('"', $image);
    $imagepath = $imagepieces[1];
    $main=wp_get_attachment_url($num);
        $template=get_template_directory();
        $the_title=get_the_title();
    print "<img src='$main' alt='$the_title' class='frame' />";
  endif;
}

The first image contributed to an article is simply outputted by this code. This output must now be displayed in your theme.

You’ll need to change the theme files where the post thumbnail(); function is utilized to accomplish this. Replace it with the code below.

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<?php if (  (function_exists('has_post_thumbnail')) && (has_post_thumbnail())  ) {
echo get_the_post_thumbnail($post->ID);
} else {
echo main_image();
} ?>
 In WordPress, the first image is used as the post thumbnail.

You may now see it in action on your website.

We hope you found this article useful in determining the default fallback picture for WordPress post thumbnails.