Feature images (also known as post thumbnails) are a core feature of most WordPress themes, and usually show up at the top of a post right under the main title. They’re the article’s main image, and they typically reflect what the article is about.
If you share your articles on social media or through any chat app, the feature image would be the image that shows up when your article link is shared.
If you have no feature image on your article, an empty square shows up, not a great look or a way to get clicks on your content.
If you want to replace your featured image for one post, it’s easy – all you have to do is edit the post. However, if you want to change or edit feature images across multiple posts, it can be a pain going through one by one manually.
Luckily, WordPress has a plugin for just about everything and feature images are no exception.
This is where the Quick Featured Images plugin comes in to save the day. It allows you to set, replace, or edit featured images across multiple posts, define presets for an automatic default featured image, and clear the database from featured images that no longer exist.
It’s a handy plugin, so let’s start!
Install the Quick Featured Images plugin
Log in to your WordPress dashboard, head to Plugins > Add New, fill in Quick Featured Images in the top-right search field, and click the Install Now button:
Next, click Activate to activate the plugin:
Once the plugin is activated, you’ll find a new admin menu option – Featured Images, in the left sidebar. Once you click it, it will take you to the plugins configuration screen:
Set, replace or remove multiple featured images
Head to Featured Images > Bulk Edit in your WordPress dashboard.
First option: Actions with a single image
This feature allows you to modify featured images using a single image. For example, you can set a single image as a featured image for all published posts on your website, which will automatically replace existing featured images in those posts.
Second option: Actions with multiple images
This feature allows you to add multiple feature images to your posts’ on your website. They will be set randomly, and you can’t choose which image goes to which post.
Third option: Actions without any selected image
This feature allows you to remove all existing featured images on your website (if you no longer want them). Additionally, you can remove all featured images in the WordPress database that no longer have corresponding image files on the server.
Replace all featured images with a single image
To replace all existing featured images on your website with a single image, select Replace featured image by the selected image option under Actions with a single image section, and click Choose Image:
Click Select Files, choose the image on your computer, wait for it to upload, and click Choose Image:
Scroll down, and click Next:
On the next page, click Choose Images under the Select the featured images you want to replace by the selected image section:
Use CTRL on Windows and CMD on Mac to select multiple featured images you want to replace in your media library, and click Choose Images:
Next, click Preview filtering:
The plugin will show all posts that match the feature image we’re replacing, and at this point – you can confirm the change or start over/modify it.
Click the Apply button to confirm the change:
You’re done! The plugin will automatically change your featured image on all posts that matched the selected (old) featured image:
Default images based on taxonomy
This plugin also allows you to set a default featured image for each post or set it based on taxonomy.
Head to Featured Images > Default Images in your WordPress dashboard.
The first option on this page will override any featured image set on a post when the post is saved or published. If you want to set the default featured image, the plugin will use the rules you configure on this page.
This option is useful if you run a multi-author WordPress blog and don’t want your authors to insert featured images or use featured images based on the post’s taxonomy.
The second option on this page allows you to configure the first image within a post to be used as a featured image. If there is no image, then the plugin will use the rules you configure on this page.
The third option allows you to configure your own custom rules. If needed, you can add multiple rules via the Add Rule button. You can set featured images based on authors, categories, tags, or any custom taxonomy you may be using on your site. It’s straightforward – choose a picture, then choose a taxonomy term and click Save Changes.
Adjust plugin settings
Head to Featured Images > Settings to find various useful settings you can enable for this plugin.
This section allows you to:
Show featured images in the posts/pages list
WordPress doesn’t show featured images on posts and pages by default. To see a feature image, you would need to edit each post. The Settings page’s first option allows you to enable a column representing a featured image for each post and page.
Here’s how it looks when this setting is enabled:
Show featured images in the media library
The second option on this page will add a new column to your media library’s list view, which will show if the image is set as a featured image on any of your posts/pages.
Here’s how it looks when this setting is enabled:
Set which user role can use the plugin
The third option on this page allows you to define which user role is allowed to use this plugin (administrator, editor).