How to Change the Image that Shows on Website Link

WordPress | 13 comments

You’re wondering how to change the image that shows on website link because… You just finished your WordPress website and you’re super proud of it, so you share it via text message or post it to Facebook – and then you see an image you don’t want representing your entire website pop up with the link you’ve just shared. Sound familiar?

The good news is there is an easy way to change the image that shows on website link. (That’s a little awkward phrasing, but Yoast SEO says…).

Note: Some things have changed since I first posted this, if you want the 2023 version using the SEOPress free plugin, click here.

Change the Image that Shows on Website Link

Option #1

So this image is actually a page thumbnail, and you can change it much the same way you change the thumbnail image for your blog posts. You can simply upload a featured image.

Note: Depending on your theme, uploading a featured image may alter the content on your page by putting that image at the top of it. If this happens, you’ll want to use option #2.

To do this, you will go to your page settings by clicking Edit Page. Note, if you use a front end page builder, you don’t want to be in the page builder, but in the actual page. So in my case, I am selecting ‘Edit’, not ‘Edit with WP….’.

From there, I’m simply going to add a Featured Image in the righthand bar.

change the image that shows on website link

Once you’ve done that, you can purge your cache and test your link again to see if you were able to change the image that shows on website link.

Option #2

If this doesn’t seem to work, or if it alters content on the page, then you can use the Yoast SEO plugin.

Once you’ve installed the Yoast SEO plugin, you’ll go back to your page’s back end via the Edit option and scroll down until you see the Yoast SEO section. Here you’ll select the social tab and upload your image there:

change the image that shows on website link

Again, purge your cache and re-test your link. If THIS doesn’t work drop my a comment and I’ll workshop it with you 🙂

Best of luck! Xx, Kara

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  1. Haoyee

    I have tried both options, but they don’t seem to work. Is it because purging the cache and waiting for Facebook to read the new image takes a long time?

    • Kara

      Sometimes it does take 24 hours or so. Are you still having the issue?

  2. Zach


    Option #1 made the image show up at the top of every page so I had to try option #2. After 24 hours and flushing the cache it is still not working. Whenever I text a link of my website to someone it shows an image that is on my website, but not the social image I selected. Not sure what I should try next.

    • Kara

      Hi Zach, yes – the issue you’re experiencing with #1 is described in the note in this article. Depending on your theme settings, the image will appear on the page. If the Yoast SEO method is not working, you can also try the Open Graph plugin.

      This post also has more detailed information for configuring and troubleshooting the Yoast SEO method:

      Good luck!

  3. Kiss Chanel

    Your advice helped with my browser! However, the main issue I Googled that brought me here is still occurring. I’ve tried everything under the SUN to get mine to update via iMessage and Facebook, it’s so STUBBORN. I uploaded a new .ico and all. Any advice? I tried the advice you gave the others above. Thank you in advance for your time, great blog! <3

    • Kara

      Maybe check with your theme to make sure there isn’t another place in your site settings that relays this information.

  4. UniqueGirl

    Hello Kara,

    When I share my WordPress website link on my official whatsapp group, the thumbnail image shows different than the one I want.
    I tried the Feature Image option but that alters my homepage. The Yoast SEO option is not available to me because of the Plan I have purchased.
    What can be done to fix this? Or any other option I can look into?

    • Kara

      The Yoast SEO thumbnail options should be available on the free plan unless something changed…
      I’m not sure what theme you’re using but many have the option of disabling the featured image from appearing on the homepage.

  5. Carina

    Hey there, I have tried both options-when I want to share it on facebook it works, but when I share the link on Whatsapp it just shows a black picture and unfortunately not the picture I have chosen…. any ideas?

    Thank you for the help!

    • Kara

      Hmm… usually whatever works for Facebook works for iMessages, but I haven’t tested anything with Whatsapp.

  6. Zeytinburnu Ev Tasima

    Howdy are using WordPress for your blog platform? I’m new to
    the blog world but I’m trying to get started and set up
    my own. Do you require any html coding expertise to make your own blog?
    Any help would be really appreciated!

    • Kara

      You don’t need any HTML code to start a blog. I’d recommend Squarespace for people who are new to website set up. My blog is on WordPress though — it really does depend on the theme you select how easy it will be to use.

  7. Crown

    This was of great help. Came handy just when I needed it. Thank you for sharing this.


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Hi, I'm Kara

I’m one part website designer, one part strategist and one part accountability partner.  I help service-based solopreneurs get set up online without the tech headaches!