Using high quality product images in your ecommerce store is important for helping customers understand the product and encourage them to buy. This applies mostly to physical products, but what if you are selling a service, an add-on, or a digital download?  You might also want to list a product in the store before a product image is available for an upcoming product.

WooCommerce uses the WordPress Featured Image as the main image on product pages. When the Featured Image has not yet been set for a product, WooCommerce defaults to a placeholder image. The default placeholder image from WooCommerce is a simple grey box that can look out of place on a site that has design and branding setup.

Here’s how you can change the placeholder image to be consistent with your site branding and present a professional appearance.

1. Use an image that is the correct size and matches the aesthetic of your site

The WooCommerce placeholder image is 450px by 450px square. You can create a substitute image of the same dimensions or use dimensions required by your theme. The image can match your theme’s color scheme and have some custom graphics to reflect the store’s branding.

custom placeholder

My Custom Placeholder Image

When you have the image ready, from the WordPress admin dashboard hover over the Media menu option and click on Add New. Drag and drop the new image onto the page and it will be uploaded to the site.

Upload Custom Placeholder

When the image is done uploading press the Edit link to see image details. Copy the File URL field for use in the next step.

Get Placeholder URL

2. Add a short snippet of code to point to the URL of the image

To replace the default placeholder image you can use this snippet of code. Simply add it to the functions.php file of your site’s theme and your site will use your custom placeholder. Remember to use the file URL of the image you uploaded.

3. Use a plugin like the WooCommerce Customizer from SkyVerge

If you don’t want to add the code snippet above to your theme and instead want to make the placeholder change via the WordPress dashboard, you can use the WooCommerce Customizer plugin available on

This plugin offers a placeholder change option as one of its customizations.

Here’s the custom placeholder in action on a WooCommerce demo site:


Using a custom placeholder image will help your store look more polished and professional!

Happy Selling!

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Published by Daniel Espinoza

Daniel has been building ecommerce plugins and sites since 2007. He built the first commercial plugin for WooCommerce in 2011 and has built dozens of plugins since.