I have wondered about the web and came across this beautiful piece of code:




  echo '<img src="' .  get_bloginfo('template_directory') . '/images/default_post_thumb.jpg" />';


What it does, is adds a default thumbnail to every single post. That's good for a portfolio blog, but what if I have loads of categories, e.g. one category is tutorials and another is music - I must have different default thumbnails for those categories.

Can anybody please explain to me how I can customize this code to show different default thumbnails for different categories?

Thanks :)

1 Answer 1


The code below shows the "post-thumbnail" aka the featured image if the post has one, if not depending on the category, the default thumbnail is shown (with the comments, the code should be self-explanatory):


// If the post has a featured image defined use it
if( has_post_thumbnail() ) {

// Default image for Technology category
} elseif ( is_category( 'technology' ) ) {
    echo '<img src="' .  get_bloginfo('template_directory') . '/images/default_technology_post_thumb.jpg" />';

// Default image for Gadgets category
} elseif ( is_category( 'gadgets' ) ) {
    echo '<img src="' .  get_bloginfo('template_directory') . '/images/default_gadgets_post_thumb.jpg" />';

// Default image for all others
} else {
    echo '<img src="' .  get_bloginfo('template_directory') . '/images/default_post_thumb.jpg" />';


Suggested Reading: WordPress Codex — Conditional Tags

  • Do I put this in functions.php?
    – Nick
    Jul 1, 2012 at 10:38
  • @Nick Then mark it as the answer :)
    – its_me
    Jul 1, 2012 at 10:38
  • No, it doesn't go into the theme's functions.php. You need to add it in your template files (index.php, archive.php, search.php, content.php, or single.php, etc.) depending on where you want the thumbnail to be shown.
    – its_me
    Jul 1, 2012 at 10:41
  • ok. I'll try that. By the way, does it matter where I put above code in page.php/index.php?
    – Nick
    Jul 1, 2012 at 10:42
  • Yes. In general, code in index.php shows on homepage, archive.php on archive pages (category & tag archives), search.php on search results pages, single.php in posts, and so on. So yes, where you add the code matters.
    – its_me
    Jul 1, 2012 at 10:51

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