Why WordPress Images Not Showing and How to Fix

On-site images, from featured to illustrative, serve much more of a purpose than simply making an eye-catching design. They’re a matter of enhancing your content and communicating additional information. Google also takes quality images as a factor to evaluate your SEO.

Understand this, WordPress offers a Media Library to easily store and manage all your file types, including images, documents, videos, and so on. It enables you to upload, describe, or even edit your files, and images in particular within seconds.

Despite coming with ease-of-use features, beginners take a lot of time to get to know most of the image functionalities. Still, a few features aren’t noticeable. Some users don’t know how to handle when image issues occur. And one of the most common problems is images not showing on the live site. This affects not only your user experience but also SEO scores.

If you ever had a question about image recognition, then you’re in luck. In this article, we’ll troubleshoot this error in 3 easy ways. But before that, let’s strive to spell out the effect of missing images on your WordPress site as well as the main causes.

We also have other useful articles that might help you deal with other issues with your WordPress websites, such as how to fix this site can’t be reached error in WordPress, how to rename images in WordPress, and even how to sell Canva templates with WordPress.

How Missing Images Affects Your WordPress Site

You’ve added an image to your WordPress page and post. However, you don’t see it when previewing or publishing. The page shows an empty block or an HTML image-not-loaded icon.

This annoys both visitors and search bots. You should also even pay more attention when your product images don’t show up. Here is an example of what readers see on your site if photos don’t appear.



  • Affect user experience

Human beings are visual-thirsty creatures. Images help explain text with fewer words. Imagine that you land on a page and see a long block of text, you immediately leave it right away for sure. Similar to pages missing images. As a consequence, the time they spend on your site falls off considerably which damages your site SEO.

  • Decrease the sales volume

For e-commerce stores, product images present how your goods look and impress the shoppers at the first sight. What if your online shop doesn’t display the right photos? Or these pictures are missing for some reason?

Simply think of a situation when customers buy a t-shirt from an online store without seeing it. You’re scaring away prospects and customers and directly discouraging them from making purchases.

Why Images Showing on Your WordPress Site

There are several factors when it comes to images not showing problems. Have you ever uploaded a photo from your computer but forget to insert it into your WordPress content? Then, you preview the page and see the image nowhere.

Another reason comes to wrong image sizes. This happens regularly on WooCommerce stores where you put too large or too small product photos. As a consequence, buyers just see blurry and error product images.

Most non-tech-savvy don’t find out that incompatibility or plugin and theme conflict can lead to this trouble of image not showing too. Many WordPress users have reported that their content or featured images disappear when enabling the Jetpack plugin. They have to deactivate it to get these photos back.

You might not notice but all files, including images, PDFs, GIFs, videos, and audio won’t show up to unwanted people if you protect them using the Prevent Direct Access Gold plugin. Google crawlers or any other search bots won’t be able to find them either. Only authorized users such as admin, members, and customers have the right to view and access them. This is a rare case that missing WordPress images can benefit you in some ways.

Once understand how the missing WordPress images affects your site and what causes this problem, it’s time to look for a solution to troubleshoot it. Since there are various places where your photos don’t display, like posts and the Media Library, you need to take a big-picture approach.

Fix Images not Showing in Posts

#1 Insert Image into Posts

If you don’t remember to add photos to your WordPress page and post, it’s simple to fix it. All you need to do includes clicking on the Add Media button above the post editor toolbar.


Then, select your desired one and hit Insert into post button under the attachment details. You update and preview the content to make sure the attached file shows up in the right way.


#2 Grant File Access to the Right Users

As indicated, when your file is secured by the PDA Gold plugin, standards visitors will see a not-loaded image on the content.


To fix this, you’re required to unprotect the files or provide admins, authors, and paid members the right to view them. The following 5 steps will guide you on how to get started:

  1. Open the Media Library in your WordPress dashboard
  2. Select the desired image
  3. Uncheck the box Protect this file in the attachment details

Fix Images not Showing in Media Library

You might suffer a nightmare when there are no images available in the WordPress Media Library. The problem prevents images from displaying on both the backend and frontend. You have 2 ways to handle this, either disabling image hotlinking or changing file permission of the upload folder.


#1 Disable Image Hotlinking

WordPress image hotlinking refers to a way of image theft by including your image URL in their content instead of downloading it then reuploading. Consequently, it steals your bandwidth and slows down your site which affects the website performance and causes a ‘Could not load image’ error.

To disable image hotlinking, you need to:

  1. Log into your cPanel account
  2. Open the Hotlink Protection option
  3. Unable the option

It’s possible for you to stop image hotlinking using the PDA Gold plugin too. Not only it helps restrict direct access to the protected files but the plugin also prevents image hotlinking without your permission.

Once installing and activating PDA Gold, head to the general settings page and enable the feature Prevent Image Hotlinking under the Other Security Options section. That’s it!


#2 Check File Permissions

WordPress bases on folder permission setting to define your file visibility. When someone accidentally changes the permission, you’re not able to view the images in the media library. You have to reset the file permission by:

  1. Log in to your FTP account
  2. Go to /wp-content/ directory and open the uploads directory
  3. Check the file permission in the Permissions and Owner/Group column. It should be 0644 and 505 503.
  4. Right-click the file and adjust this number if you see it’s not correct

Do Images Display on Your WordPress Site Now?

Photos and pictures assist you in increasing the visual presence of your WordPress website as well as creating a positive user experience. You must take immediate action when any of your images don’t appear on the live site or in the Media Library.

There are various reasons that lead to the image showing restriction problems. You might forget to insert in the content or there is a conflict between themes and plugins. Another important cause belongs to protected files as well.

For the frontend image error, you should remember to add it to your page or post. It’s recommended to provide the right file access to authorized people to avoid unwanted experiences.

In terms of images not showing in the library issue, simply disable the image hotlinking option and making sure that they have the right permissions in the upload folder.

Still have a question about images not appearing trouble? Let us know in the comment section below!