Learn How to Manage a WordPress Post Thumbnail with Plugins
Last Updated July 31, 2023
WordPress post thumbnails, also known as featured images, are images that are assigned to a post or page on a WordPress site. Post thumbnails allow for a visual representation of content, which can be beneficial for readers by giving them a better understanding of what the post is about. Post thumbnails are important because they help to improve the user experience and can be used to promote posts on social media. But dealing with thumbnails can be a pain with the current admin interface. Thankfully, there are WordPress post thumbnail plugins that can help with this issue.
Popular WordPress Post Thumbnail Plugins
Each of the WordPress post thumbnail plugins on this list is available, for free, from WordPress.org. Simply download the plugin file from the site and then upload it to your installation. Or, alternatively, you can install and activate these from the Plugins screen of the WordPress admin.
We have summarized each of the plugin’s features and capabilities as best we can. In addition, some of these plugins offer paid versions as well. We’ve provided a brief rundown of what those pro versions offer over the free plugins to help you make the best decision.
Let’s get started and find the perfect plugin to help you manage post thumbnails on your WordPress sites.
Regenerate Thumbnails is the first WordPress post thumbnail plugin on our list. It is a simple but handy plugin that, as its name says, lets you regenerate all thumbnail sizes for images that are in your Media Library. This is especially useful for times when a new thumbnail size is added but you want older uploads to have the same thumbnail size.
You can use this plugin when you’ve changed the dimensions of a current thumbnail size. If you’ve switched to a new theme and its featured images use a different size, then you may use it for that as well. The plugin also has the capability to do things like to delete any old or unused thumbnails if you need to. This will help you free up any dwindling server space.
This plugin was first released by its creator in August of 2008. It is actively on version 3.1.6 and last saw a change on August 14th, 2023. The latest version works on WordPress 6.3.1 and requires at least PHP 5.2.4 to run on your server. This plugin is now operating on over 1,000,000 WordPress sites. It has had over 20,392,170 downloads. There have been 7 help requests with a 29% response rate. Regenerate Thumbnails has below average support from its developer. Reviews for this plugin are very positive. Many of the end-users who left a piece of feedback found this plugin to be worthwhile.
Auto Featured Image
Auto Featured Image automatically generates the thumbnail image of your post based on whatever the first image is within the content. It does this only in the case that a featured image is not set already manually. It also can generate a featured image based on your post title, or alternatively, you can search and import pictures from popular stock platforms. If you want featured images removed as well, the plugin handles that. You can generate or remove these pictures using filters based on whatever post type, status, category, or creation date your desired images fall under.
This plugin was initially released by its owner in April of 2010. It is now on version 3.9.18 and last experienced a revision on March 30th, 2023. The newest update operates on WordPress 6.2.2 and requires at least PHP 7.0 to run on your server. This plugin is currently operating on over 70,000 WordPress websites. It has had over 1,595,310 downloads. There have been 4 assistance requests with a 0% response rate. Auto Featured Image (Auto Post Thumbnail) has below average support from its developer. WordPress users are positive and think highly of this product.
Auto Featured Image Pro is the paid and premium version of this WordPress post thumbnail plugin. It offers more features to expand the capabilities that its base plugin provides. Pro comes in two lifetime plans: one for five websites and the other for an unlimited amount.
With Auto Featured Image Pro, you can generate or remove your featured images from a list of posts and pages. You also get the ability to search and upload unlimited images from Google, Unsplash, and Pixabay. To customize further, you can upload your own background images and fonts and control the position of any text. Import all images from your post text to the media library as well.
Featured Image Admin Thumb
Featured Image Admin Thumb is a WordPress post thumbnail plugin that inserts a “thumb” column into all posts, pages, and all custom post type lists in the admin. This will show the set thumbnail of any piece of content on your site. The plugin makes it so much easier to tell which posts are lacking images. Conveniently, you may edit and add or change your thumbnail image directly from the column. You don’t have to click on each individual post to do so manually.
This product was initially published by its developer in December of 2013. It is currently on version 1.6 and last experienced a revision on May 1st, 2023. The most recent edition runs on WordPress 6.2.2 and requires at least PHP 7.0 to run on your server. This plugin is currently running on over 20,000 WordPress websites. It has had over 147,960 downloads. There have not been many assistance requests from end-users. Reviews for this plugin are very positive. Many of the end-users who left a piece of feedback found Featured Image Admin Thumb to be great.
Magic Post Thumbnail
Magic Post Thumbnail is a WordPress plugin that allows you to easily and quickly generate thumbnails and pictures for your site’s posts, pages, and custom post types. Your images can be retrieved from popular sources like Google Images, DALL-E, Flickr, Creative Commons, and Pixabay. They can be automatically generated based on things like the title of your posts or an analysis of the post’s content. There is also a mass image generation option for posts and taxonomies.
This product was initially released by its developer in May of 2012. It is now on version 4.1.13 and last had a revision on July 4th, 2023. The most recent release operates on WordPress 6.2.2 and requires at least PHP 7.3 to work on your server. This plugin is actively running on over 10,000 WordPress websites. It has had over 277,800 downloads. There have been 3 help requests with a 33% response rate. Magic Post Thumbnail has below average support from its creator. Reviews for this plugin are very positive. Many of the users who left a piece of feedback found Magic Post Thumbnail to be wonderful.
Magic Post Thumbnail Pro is the premium version of the plugin with more features to further enhance its existing capabilities. Pro comes in different plans based on the number of websites it’s to be used on. There are also pricing options based on renewing annually or buying a single lifetime purchase.
Some added features include things like customizable crowns, images generated randomly, and the ability to set up a proxy. More image providers are available so you can source your images from sites like YouTube, Shutterstock, Getty Images, Unsplash, and Pexels. Your image may be generated also based on the tags, categories, and custom fields of your post.
If you would like to slightly edit your image, Magic Post Thumbnail Pro gives you the option to flip it horizontally or crop the image by 10%. The developers provide 24-hour support. Finally, this WordPress post thumbnail plugin is compatible with other plugins like WPeMatico, FeedWordPress, WP All Import, and Featured Image from URL.
ZI Hide Featured Image
ZI Hide Featured Image is the final WordPress post thumbnail solution we’ll be discussing here today. This minimalistic plugin enables you to hide whatever featured image is on a single post or page that you choose. On the “Featured Image” section on edit pages, the plugin automatically adds a checkbox that will remove your image from the post or page if checked. The feature is not just exclusive to posts and pages. It is also found on custom post types and even WooCommerce products.
This product was initially published by its owner in December of 2020. It is now on version 1.0.0 and last had a revision on January 4th, 2023. The newest release works on WordPress 6.1.3. This plugin is presently running on over 1,000 WordPress sites. It has had over 6,450 downloads. There have not been many assistance requests from customers. Users score this plugin as average.
Find the Best WordPress Post Thumbnail Plugin
That’s it for our rundown of WordPress post thumbnail plugins. As we mentioned above, a good featured image or post thumbnail is important. It helps readers identify what a piece of content is about quickly and adds interest to any piece of text.
Of course, it’s tough to manage thumbnails without help. The default WordPress admin, in its current form, is clunky at best when dealing with featured images. And for things like custom post type, it might be impossible without help. The WordPress plugin community always steps up to fill in gaps and this situation is no exception.
Try some of these plugins out and you will eventually find the right mix of features, interface, and support to meet your specific needs.
Looking for More Ways to Improve WordPress?
Are you a WordPress developer here to find a post thumbnail solution for a client website or project? Before you go, check out our White Label WordPress plugin.
White Label was developed to help developers like you customize and rebrand the WordPress admin experience for your clients. Build a custom login page, select colors and replace logos to match client branding, edit menus, and much more.
Check out our full feature list to find out all of the ways White Label can help you with client projects. Make WordPress less confusing for users and easier for you to support with our plugin.
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