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WooCommerce: Use Product Images as Category Images

So, earlier this morning I found myself wishing that WooCommerce had the capability to use a product thumbnail when displaying a category link in situations where the category doesn’t have its own thumbnail defined.

I went on a bit of a hunt and found a couple of small plugins. One didn’t work at all, which I attribute mainly to it having not been updated for two years and much changing in both WordPress and WooCommerce since then, and another one that I found didn’t work until I made a couple of code changes – and had a couple of noteworthy problems;

  • it would only fetch product thumbnails from that immediate category – not delving deeper down into the category tree and fetch product thumbnails from child categories, and
  • it did no filtering for products that had no thumbnails set, so would in some cases return products that had no thumbnail

So, I’ve made my own. A zip download can be found below, you just need to drop the folder inside it into your wp-content/plugins folder and then activate the “WooCommerce Category Product Thumbnails” plugin.

I’m using WordPress 4.9.4 and WooCommerce 3.3.0 – please let me know in the comments if it doesn’t work on other versions.

Update version 1.1 –  23rd March 2018: Add option (found under WooCommerce -> Settings -> Products -> Auto Category Thumbnails) to change the image size used for the automatic thumbnails. By default it remains as “shop_thumbnail”, but you may find that “shop_catalog” is a better choice.

Download the plugin (2.30 KiB Zip, version 1.1)