Still not sure if our WP Random Featured Image plugin is for you? These frequently asked questions should help out.

What is a featured image?

This used to be called the post thumbnail in earlier versions of WordPress. It’s an image you can manually choose to represent the post. How this image is used will depend on the theme or other plugins you are using. Typically it is used as a header image for the post, and at a smaller size on category or tag pages showing that post. It’s also typically the image used in image sliders or other graphical navigation tools. So it can be very important in both making your site look good and encouraging visitors to spend more time on your site.

So what does this WP plugin do?

Normally you have to choose each featured image by hand. If you don’t have a suitable image for a post, this plugin will randomly set one for you when you publish the post. In particular this is ideal for ‘autoblogging’ sites where you typically don’t want any post to be missing a featured image, and everything else is happening automatically too.

Why do I need this?

Sometimes you just want to get a post published quickly without having to think about creating a custom image (you can always come back later and change it when you have time). Or you may want posts to be automatically published without any manual intervention at all (e.g. autoblogging), but need every post to have a featured image to make the site work properly. Or maybe you’re just bored of having to find or create images every time you want to post something.

Does the plugin include any images?

No, images are not included – but finding perfect images is easy. For best results you need to use images that are topically relevant to your blog. There’s no point using images of amazing hairstyles on a blog about board games! For best results you need to find at least a handful of visually appealing images highly related to your topic. If you have photos of your own, that’s perfect. If not, search for suitable image sites (e.g. ‘royalty free images board games’, ‘free images board games’ etc) to find one of the many websites providing high quality images. Some will require a one-off fee per image, others are entirely free. Alternatively you also try an image search for your topic, and then filter by license (both Bing and Google support this).

How do I install the plugin?

You can find instructions for installing and setting it up here. But any problems just ask.

How many images should I add?

More is better. But it depends how often you post, and how often you post without a featured image. As well as how your site navigation and category pages work. You don’t want the same images to appear too often in your navigation. If only 1 post out of 10 needs an image, then as few as 5 or 10 may be enough. If hardly any posts have an image then you’re going to need 20 or more.

How do I remove a featured image in WordPress?

You can find the option in the right hand sidebar when you edit a post (if you can’t see it, then click on ‘Screen Options’ right at the top of the page and make sure that option is ticket). There will be an option to Set or Remove it. The WP RFI plugin automatically adds this image in exactly the same way you would. So to change the featured image for a post, you just edit the post, remove the current image and then set any image you like as normal.

Why is my WordPress featured image not showing?

If an image has been set for the post but it does not display anywhere, then this will be down to the theme you are using. Some themes just don’t use this feature of WordPress. You can either choose a different theme, or customize your chosen theme (by creating a child theme) to add the functionality. This latter option requires programming skills however so is not for the novice. We can help you with WordPress customization services though so please get in touch if you need help with this.

How do I override the random image to set my own?

Simple edit the post, remove the existing featured image. And then set a new image.

How do I change the WP featured image size?

This is a feature of the theme you are using. Depending on the theme there may be some built-in options – try the Appearance/Customize menu option. Otherwise this will require some programming knowledge to make the changes (we can help).

Question not answered?

Hopefully this has cleared up any confusion about how the plugin works. But if you still have any questions though, please do get in touch, we’re always happy to help out.