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How to Rename Images in WordPress (Simple Tutorial)


Learning how to rename images in WordPress is one of the most valuable ways to boost your technical SEO strategy. 

After all, not only Google and other search engines evaluate your alt tags and image descriptions when evaluating your site. They also delve into the file name structure and the keywords within it.

In general, WordPress will allow users to change the alt tag and image caption. Unfortunately, there is no built-in way to change the image file name from the administration area. 

The good news is that WordPress plugins are available to simplify this process for you.

By the time you finish reading this article, you will have a complete step-by-step guide on how to rename images in WordPress to boost your SEO strategy.

Why rename images in WordPress?

How to Rename Images in WordPress (Simple Tutorial)

Images are an important part of the design of any website. Whether you're creating responsive images for your landing pages and product, or uploading content to a blog post, visuals make a huge impact.

Not only do the right visuals break down text for quick and simple consumption, but they are also excellent for boosting your search engine visibility. Users can enhance their WordPress images with alt tags, descriptions, and keyword titles.

However, if you really want to get the most out of your images for SEO purposes, you need to consider file naming. Both search engines and users need your help to determine the content of any visuals that you upload to your site. One of the best ways to make your photos easier to find and describe is to give them the correct file name.

A name like "Miami-beach" is more useful than "DSC00234.jpg". Unfortunately, many of us upload photos to our sites directly from our phone or camera. You can even download images from other sites and forget to rename them before uploading them to your WordPress site.

Once you place your images in your WordPress directory, there is no default option to rename the file. This means that you either need to upload the image again with a new name or try an alternative solution.

How to rename your images in WordPress

Fortunately for WordPress users, there are always plugins available for these types of functionality. With these plugins, you unlock the ability to rename your files with minimal effort. Today, we will be looking at the Media File Renamer plugin for exactly this purpose.

This is a simple and convenient plugin that allows you to either manually or automatically change the names of your media files within WordPress. The easy-to-use service also comes with locking and unlocking capabilities to avoid renaming from other users on your site.

The first thing you need to do to use this feature is to download the Media File Renamer plugin. You can do this directly from the MeowApps website or get the free version from within the "Plugins" section of WordPress.

Click "Plugins" on the left side of your WordPress dashboard and search for "Media File Renamer".

Click the "Install Now" button, then "Activate".

You can then find File Renamer inside the installed plugins. Once the plugin is installed, it will add a new option to the "Media" section of the dashboard menu on the left.

Hover over the Media toolbar, and you will see the Rename tab.

Change the name of your image file

Clicking on the "Renamer" option will take you to the Media File Renamer dashboard. Here, you'll see a tutorial button if you need help learning how to use the service. You can also click on Settings to change the functionality of the app.

For example, you can choose to have your files automatically renamed by the app once you upload an image to WordPress.

Let's start by changing the file name manually.

You'll need to actually upload the images you want to name into your WordPress media library to get started, of course. Click the Analyze Library button in Renamer This will allow the plugin to search your images and drag them to the Media File Renamer dashboard.

Once the image is in the Control Panel, you'll see where it's used on your site, its current address, and a "File name" section, where you can lock or unlock the address. Click the little pencil icon next to the file title to change the name.

We recommend sticking to lowercase and keeping your name as short as possible to make it more searchable. It is also helpful to add some keywords if possible. For example, if your keyword for the post where the image is used is “wedding budget,” you can make the file name similar as long as it is closely related to the image itself.

Once you are satisfied with the new name, click OK.

You can also click the Rename All button to automatically rename all the files in your media library at the same time. This is an "automatic" function in File Renamer that uses information from the EXIF ​​file inside the image to determine the new address.

The plugin automatically updates the file name everywhere, including if you've used the image in a post or page across your website.

Use advanced renaming features

Two versions of Media File Renamer are available today. The basic option will allow you to rename your files automatically or manually. You can also update references for renamed files in the content of all post types, excerpts, and custom fields.

In the "basic" package, you'll be able to automatically update the names based on the attached post ACF field, or the media title. If you upgrade to the pro version, there are a few other options.

With Media File Renamer Pro, file names can be updated automatically based on:

  • Attached post title
  • alt text
  • or anonymize MD5

There are also a host of additional advanced features in the Pro package, such as the ability to unlock subtitles, enable numbered files, and sync ALT text and media titles across all sources using the same file. This speeds up the process of updating your content after renaming files.

You can also implement SQL logging with the premium version, which means that every SQL request executed by the Renamer on your site will be logged, as well as the undo requests.

Rename your WordPress image files

Renaming WordPress image files can be an important stage in any SEO strategy, but it's not something you can do automatically with WordPress on its own. Fortunately, a powerful tool like Media File Renamer can save you a lot of time optimizing.

We hope this tutorial gave you everything you need to know to quickly rename your files on your WordPress site and boost your rankings online.

How to Rename Images in WordPress (Simple Tutorial)