All You Wanted to Know About the WordPress Header Image

As the first thing you see on a WordPress website, the header image forms a visitor’s initial impression of the level of content quality he or she is about to consume. As a website owner, it’s your chance to fly high or die. Though it seems that creating and uploading a header image should be a simple process (and it is), there are several decisions to make along the way.

You may have had issues when working with header images in the past, but those days are long gone. Right here, right now, we offer all you ever wanted to know about the WordPress header image. If you are looking to change your logo that appears in the header area, there’s another guide that helps you add a logo to your WordPress Header

How to Change a WordPress Header Image

The most basic change you can make to a header image and probably one of the first things you’ll want to do is swap out the default image that comes bundled with WordPress and insert your own. This is an easily accomplished mission.

Step 1 – On your WordPress dashboard -> Under Appearance -> Header
Once inside the WordPress dashboard area, navigate the left sidebar down to where you click on “Appearance,” then “header.”

WordPress Header Image
From there it’s a simple matter to hide or delete the current header and choose to upload a new one either from your WordPress media library or computer.

Change WordPress Header

 

Choosing a Header Image Size

There is no one size fits all header. The optimal dimensions depend on upon which theme you use and, drilling down even more, which width is setting you to implement for that particular theme. The good news is you can open up the header customization area as described in the previous section and find a size recommendation. It’s a good idea to use the recommended size to ensure your image is clear, not hazy and chopped off. If you’re going to err in one direction, it’s probably better to use an image larger than the suggestion rather than smaller. If it’s smaller, WordPress will stretch it out to fit the prescribed header area, usually creating a pixelated effect in the process.

WordPress Header Image Plugins

Plugins are small programs written to perform a particular function. As a quick glance in the plugin section of the dashboard reveals, there are plenty of header plugins that expand and sometimes improve upon the out-of-the-box WordPress header choices. The truth is that as awesome of a content management system as WordPress is, sometimes the header options feel pretty limited. If that turns out to be the case as you’re designing your website, head to the left side of the dashboard. Click on “Plugins” and “add new.” This gets you to a searchable database of all the plugins available. Enter the word “header” in the “search plugins” box, and you’ll get a list of approximately 3,000 choices. You can narrow the list by adding other limiters to your search.

Header Image Missing

One of the most frustrating issues with header images is when one doesn’t show up as anticipated. This can happen to a newbie or salty old WordPress dog alike. The good news is that there are only a few things that can go wrong with the process that is under your control. Here are the most common troubleshooting issues:

1. You forget to click “save and publish” after uploading a new image.

2. Sometimes the server doesn’t reload the newest version of the web page. Go to the home page of your website and reload the page. This tells the host to serve the latest version.

3. If you have more than one header image uploaded, you might have forgotten to unclick the “randomize headers” button. This might make it appear that the old header is showing but you just happened to look at the page at a particular point in the rotation when the old image was featured.

Header Image Slider Plugins

A header image slider is a particular kind of plugin that rotates different headers on your website. At first glance, it might seem redundant with the “randomize headers” button already natively included in WordPress. The problem is that the native function offers absolutely zero choices other than on or off. Most slider plugins offer a dizzying array of control. For example, you can choose how fast or slow the images change, as well as different effects that transition from one image to the next. If you have a particular vision in mind, and can’t seem to achieve it through the included settings, search the plugin database. There’s a good chance you’ll find what you need.

Creating and placing a header image can be a challenging process in WordPress, especially if you don’t have much experience with the software. The more you work with it, the easier it becomes. If you run into a problem not dealt with in this article, go online and search for WordPress forums. The online support community is usually eager to share their wealth of knowledge.

Comment below to share your experience about placing a WordPress header image on your site.

About the Author

Pooja loves all things WordPress and thoroughly enjoys coming to work every day. Her team loves her too, though she suspects it is a little to do with the fact that she cooks and bakes yummy goodies for them often.

7 Comments

  • Netref Dijon says:

    It’s a nice article for beginners. I remember when i started playing wordpress with free themes : my image never fit the theme header format, always too big and reduced or too small and zoomed. I would have won a little bit of time by knowing about header plugins

  • Rebeka Sara says:

    Sorry to say, but your article is good and detailed but not presented properly. Using screen shot or video would make this tutorial great. I wish you can do this in your future tutorial. But, anyway thanks for your efforts.

    • Pooja Vangikar says:

      Hey Rebeka,

      Thanks a ton for your feedback. I have added few screenshots for presenting this article in a better way. Hope this helps. :)

      Best,
      Pooja

    • rkaldred says:

      Can you tell me how to delete a header image? Seems like it would be so simple but there is no delete button when you go into this header menu. And if you click on the image you want to delete it makes it the primary. Seems like this should be super simple but… I can’t figure it out. Wasting immense amount of time trying to figure it out! Thanks to anybody who can help.

      • Pooja Vangikar says:

        Hi,

        Here you go –>
        To delete the header image from customizer in Responsive pro theme, please go to Appearance–>Header or Appearance–>Customize–>Header image option.
        Here you will see current header image which will have hide image option. Below it there is previously uploaded image above “Randomized uploaded headers” button.
        Please keep a mouse on this previously uploaded image (do no click the image), you will see a close icon at the top right corner of the image. click on this icon and your image will be deleted.

        Hope this helps :)

  • Jessica says:

    Hi Pooja – What if my under my “Appearance” menu “header” does not appear? My “Appearance” menu only lists the following: Themes, Customize, Widgets, Menus, Dynamik License and Editor. No sign of “header” – what does this mean? Thanks!

    • Susmita says:

      Hello Jessica,

      The header option may vary as per the theme. In case you don’t find the ‘Header’ option, you can customize the header via ‘Customize’ from Appearance.
      If you still have any queries, feel free to drop me a note at [email protected]. :)

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