WordPress: Add a Featured Image Automatically from a Post

Feature a WordPress Post Image

I recently covered a way to automatically “require” a WordPress Featured Image. This article deals with a similar task, as it grabs a picture directly from your post body (if it finds one) and adds it as a Featured Image automatically.

This is convenient for users who prefer to insert images into posts but often forget to set a Featured Image in the process.

Moreover, if you ever switch to a WordPress theme that actually requires Featured Images, the following plugins can save you a ton of headaches. For example, what if you make the switch after you already have hundreds of articles published without a Featured Image?

Some of these plugins also work on older posts by inspecting which ones lack a Featured Image, potentially saving you a lot of work.

In any case, let’s look at some of the more prominent WordPress plugins that automatically add a Featured Image into your posts based on the first image found in the post body. In other words, these plugins use a WordPress post featured image.

1. Default Thumbnail Plus

This simplistic, yet powerful plugin shows a default Featured Image based on specific categories, taxonomies and other WordPress post-based features. It grabs the first image found in the post body and uses it as its default Featured Image. Such images can be extracted from embedded YouTube videos (by grabbing a screenshot from the video itself) as well as external image URLs.

Download the plugin and install it on your WordPress website, then click “Settings>Default Thumb Plus” to configure it.


2. Easy Add Thumbnail

This plugin is pretty basic, but it does the job beautifully. As stated before, it looks for the first image in your post body and automatically adds it as a Featured Image.

It also works on new and older posts, so you don’t have to edit each one manually.

Download and install the plugin just like any other. This one doesn’t require any configuration of any kind, which is a big plus for those who need a quick, functional way of managing Featured Images.

3. Auto Post Thumbnail Pro

This premium plugin also does a fantastic job. It adds the first picture from the post body as a Featured Image, it can gather it from videos, it comes in multiple languages and it works on a large number of themes. It is important to note that any existing Featured Images will not be replaced automatically by the plugin, since it only steps in when no Featured Images are available to begin with.

Download and install the plugin, then go to “Settings>Auto Post Thumbnail Pro” to change your settings according to your tastes.


The above WordPress plugins cover the need to add a Featured Image from the pictures found in your post body. Hope you use it and enjoy them to the fullest!