What determines the "Featured Image"

How do you tell FeedBlitz which image to use in an RSS/Automatic Content Block? How does Feedblitz know if the image will work as a thumbnail or hero image? Ultimately, the goal is to try to pick the image that a person would choose, based on signals from your site.


For sites with multiple images in a post, FeedBlitz uses the first qualifying image found, but there are some rules. The rules get a little technical, but your website will usually automate most of these details.


WordPress Users - A featured image added using the featured image tool does not add the image to the feed. The image must also be in a block within the post itself. If the image is not in a block within the post, it will not be included in the RSS feed without an additional plugin. The featured image tool is used to associate an image with the post for the design of your site, not for the feed's content.

For images in the blog's copy

FeedBlitz takes the first image (i.e. an <img> tag) if:

  • The image has the class "featured", or
  • Width and / or height are specified, and they are more than 15px, where:
    • width / height is found from the corresponding HTML image tag attribute, or 
    • width: / height: are used in a style attribute.

If your site uses lazyload or srcsets or data-src or data-srcsets in images. In that case, FeedBlitz will find an appropriately sized image from there. Image(s) with the class "featured" (case-insensitive) are prioritized above other candidates.


FeedBlitz does not currently examine <figure> tags, nor background images, for image URLs to use. Image URLs only when their src attribute is a fully qualified URL. In other words, the URL associated with your image must look like https://domain.com/something not data:image/ etc. You usually see  data:image or a long, random string of characters usually happens when an image has been copied or pasted from somewhere else, like a document.

Images from enclosures and media tags

If there are both images in the post AND enclosure/media tags, FeedBlitz will use the image that appears in both the post and enclosure / media tags, if there is one. Otherwise, images found in these tags are added to the list of candidate images.

FeedBlitz examines and gathers image data from the following RSS tags:

  • <enclosure> tags with an image media type, or 
  • <media:content>, or <media:thumbnail> nodes (from what was originally Yahoo’s Media RSS extensions), or 
  • <itunes:image>  

How to ensure FeedBlitz picks the image you want

Your best bet is to give it the "featured" CSS class when you add the image to your article, using the mechanism your blog / CMS provides. Otherwise, ensure you give dimensions in pixels to show FeedBlitz that the image is large enough to be used as a hero if necessary. To ensure your images are not blurry on laptops, desktops, and large tablets, your images used for hero, or full-width images should be at least 600 pixels wide. They do not need to be significantly larger, as that can cause slower loading over poor connections.

WordPress users: when you add an image to your post, you can add a class to your image by expanding the advanced section, in the sidebar, when you have an image block selected in your post.

What if there isn't a featured image in a post for the template to find?

No image will be used; FeedBlitz doe NOT insert a blank image instead. In other words, there won't be lots of ugly blank space where an image would have gone.

If you have any questions about featured images in your campaigns, please don't hesitate to let us know. You can find all of our great support resources and how to get in touch with us via email, chat or phone on our Support Page.

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