How to Allow Users to Upload Images to Your WordPress Site

Want to let your website visitors upload images to your WordPress site? Using a simple form makes this easy for your users without giving them access to log in.

In this article, we’ll show you how to allow users to upload images to your WordPress site quickly and easily.

Create Your WordPress Image Upload Form Now

How to Allow Users to Upload Images to Your WordPress Site

Check out the video above or read ahead to find out exactly how you can accept a user submitted image using WPForms step by step.

Step 1: Install WPForms

WPForms is an incredibly versatile plugin. We can use it as a WordPress image upload plugin using its simple drag-and-drop functionality without touching any code.

In order to accept user-submitted photos in WordPress, the first thing you need to do is install and activate the WPForms plugin.

The WPForms homepage

If you need help with installing the plugin, you can see this step-by-step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Step 2: Create an Image Upload Form in WordPress

WPForms lets your visitors upload images on the frontend. We just need to publish a form with a file upload field.

Once you’ve installed and activated WPForms on your site, you’ll need to create a new form. Go to WPForms » Add New in your WordPress menu.

Adding a new form in WPForms

Once you’ve done that, you’ll be taken to the form setup screen. Name your form and pick a template if you want to.

Choosing a file upload form template

WPForms comes with 1,200+ WordPress form templates to make form creation easy. You can use the pre-made File Upload Form template to start.

Whether you build your file upload form from scratch or use a template, make sure to include one of the following fields:

  • File Upload: This field will add a simple file uploader to your form so you can accept user submitted photos from visitors.
  • Rich Text: If you’re using WPForms as an image upload plugin for guest or sponsored posts, you can let users add their images right to their post content with the Rich Text field. For more information, see our complete guide to the Rich Text field.

Step 3: Edit Your File Upload Field Options

As you edit your form, you can add additional fields by dragging them from the left-hand panel to the right-hand panel. You can also click on a form field and drag it to rearrange the order on your image upload form.

The File Upload field also allows you to restrict the uploads you accept. For example, you can limit the number of images that can be uploaded with each submission.

Modern file upload drag and drop

On the backend, you can choose to save images in the Media Library. This is handy if you want to publish the images in your posts or pages.

To set this up, click on your File Upload field to see its options in the left panel. Then click on the Advanced tab.

Opening the advanced options for a File Upload field

If you want to store user-submitted photos in your Media Library, turn on the Store file in WordPress Media Library option.

Setting up a File Upload field to store files in the Medial Library

This way you can access user submitted images from your WordPress gallery.

Go to Media » Library menu in your WordPress dashboard to find the images uploaded by your users.

Opening the Media Library in WordPress

Once images are in the Media Library, you can display them on your site.

If you’re using the Rich Text field to let users upload images to your WordPress site, you’ll first need to open its field options and turn on the Allow Media Uploads option.

Turning on file uploads for the Rich Text field

Then you can turn on the Store file in WordPress Media Library option as well if you want.

When your form looks the way you want it to, click Save.

Step 4: Customize Your Image Upload Form Settings

Once your form is to your liking, go to Settings » General.

Accessing a form's general settings

Here you can configure:

  • Form Name — Change the name of your form here if you’d like.
  • Form Description — Give your form a description.
  • Tags — Add form tags to organize your site’s forms.
  • Submit Button Text — Customize the copy on the submit button.
  • Submit Button Processing Text — Change the text that will be visible while your form is being submitted.

Once you’ve completed the General settings, move down to the Spam Protection and Security settings.

Opening the form spam and security settings

These options will help prevent spam submissions and other problems with your forms:

  • Enable anti-spam protection — The anti-spam setting is automatically enabled on all new forms and uses invisible form tokens to detect and block suspicious form entries.
  • Enable Akismet anti-spam protection — If you’re using the Akismet plugin to prevent spam, you can enable it for this form here.
  • Enable country filter — Block submissions from certain countries.
  • Enable keyword filter — Block submissions if they contain certain words or phrases.
  • CAPTCHA options — WPForms offers multiple CAPTCHA intergrations, including reCAPTCHA, hCaptcha, and a Custom Captcha field. Check out our complete guide to contact form spam prevention for more details.

Save your form again once your settings look right.

Step 5: Configure Your Form Notifications

You can send a notification email whenever someone submits this form on your website.

Accessing a form's notifications settings

Unless you disable this feature, you’ll get a notification whenever someone submits an image.

If you use Smart Tags, you can also send a notification to the site visitor when they fill out the form, letting them know you received their image, and you’ll be in contact shortly.

You can also use Smart Tags to include a file upload image link in the body of your notification email.

An image file link in an email notification

Or, in the Advanced settings for a notification, you can Enable File Upload Attachments to include the user’s upload as an attachment on your email notification.

Enabling file upload attachments for an email notification

WPForms also lets you notify others when a form is submitted on your site.  For help doing this, check out our step-by-step tutorial on how to send multiple form notifications in WordPress.

Lastly, if you want to keep the branding of your emails consistent for your small business, you can check out this guide on adding a custom header to your email template.

Step 6: Configure Your Form Confirmations

Form confirmations are messages that display once someone submits their responses to your form.

They let people know that you’ve processed their form and offer you the chance to let them know what steps they must take next.

WPForms has 3 confirmation types to choose from:

  1. Message: This is the default confirmation type in WPForms. When someone submits to your form, a simple message will appear, letting them know their form was processed. Check out some great success messages to help boost user engagement.
  2. Show Page: This confirmation type will take users to a specific web page on your site thanking them for submitting the form or send them to another page where they can access other information. For help to do this, check out our tutorial on redirecting customers to a Thank You page. Also, be sure to check out our article on creating effective Thank You pages.
  3. Go to URL (Redirect): This option is for when you want to send site visitors to a different website.

Here’s how to set up a simple form confirmation in WPForms so you can customize the message people will see when they upload an image to your WordPress site.

To start, click on the Confirmations tab in the Form Editor under Settings. Then customize the confirmation message to your liking and click Save.

A file upload form confirmation

For help with other confirmation types, see our documentation on setting up form confirmations.

Step 7: Publish Your WordPress Image Upload Form

Now that you’ve built your form, you’ll need to add it to your WordPress website to get your file uploader up and ready.

WPForms allows you to add your forms to lots of locations on your website, including your WordPress blog posts, WordPress pages, and even sidebar widgets.

To begin, create a new page or post in WordPress, or go to the update settings on an existing one. After that, click on the plus (+) icon and search for and click on WPForms.

Adding a WPForms block to a page

The WPForms widget will appear inside your block. Click on the WPForms dropdown and pick your file upload form to insert it into your page.

Selecting a file upload form in the WPForms block

The form will now show up, and you can check to make sure you like the way it looks.

Once you’re satisfied with the appearance of your form, go ahead and press the Publish button to launch your file upload form.

Publishing a file upload form

Ok, now that you’re getting images from users on your forms, let’s check out how to see those files.

Step 8: View the Uploaded Files

Want to see your form entries and the uploaded files from users? You can view, search for, filter, print, and delete any of the entries.

To see the entries, head to your WordPress dashboard and click on WPForms » Entries. Then you’ll see the Entries screen that shows you all your forms.

Click on your file upload form to see its submissions and hit View to see details about a specific entry.

Viewing an image upload form entry

Now that you’re inside the entry, you’ll be able to see the file name, plus click on it to view and/or download it.

Viewing a file uploaded to a form

Check out this complete guide to form entries if you’d like to learn more.

And there you have it! You now know how to let users upload images to your WordPress site.

FAQs on Image Uploads in WordPress

Image uploads are easy to set up with WPForms, but you may run into issues with file sizes and formats. Here are some common questions we get.

How Do I Create an Image Uploader on My Website?

You can use a form builder plugin as an image uploader on your site.

Can Users Upload to WordPress Directly?

Yes, you can allow users to upload images to your gallery in WordPress. But you’ll need a plugin like WPForms, which works as an image uploader for WordPress. It lets users upload file types like images, audio, video, and documents to be uploaded with a single click.

You can even view these uploads as attachments within your WPForms entry management screen.

Why Allow Users to Upload an Image?

You might wonder when it makes sense to allow your website visitors to upload image files to your site.

Adding media files into a form is not only easy, but it can also be really helpful. Here are just a few ways your WordPress contributor can use an image upload form:

…and you can probably think of quite a few more reasons to use an image uploader for WordPress!

Having an image upload form saves you time since you don’t have to upload the user’s images yourself. It also helps to keep your site secure because you don’t have to give all your users access to log in to your site if they want to upload images.

What Image Formats Does WordPress Allow?

When you create an image upload form, WPForms uses the same defaults as WordPress.

You can accept lots of different types of files through your forms by default, including:

  • Images (.png, .gif, and .jpg)
  • Documents (.doc, .xls, .ppt, and .pdf)
  • Video (.mpg, .mov, and .wmv)
  • Audio (.wav, .mp3, and .mp4)

If you want to add other image formats, here’s how to allow additional file upload types to your forms. This is handy if you want to allow image uploads from smartphones since the file format and MIME type might be different.

If you’d like to increase the maximum upload image size for your site, you’ll need to reach out to your WordPress hosting provider to find out if it’s possible. Check out this tutorial on increasing the maximum file upload size in WordPress for more details.

Create Your WordPress Image Upload Form Now

Next, Accept User Submitted Blog Posts

Want your users to be able to submit a whole blog post, instead of just an image? Check out our guide on how to allow users to submit blog posts.

If you want to see how WPForms compares to other popular form builders, check out our guide on WPForms vs Typeform.

So, what are you waiting for? Get started with the most powerful WordPress forms plugin today. WPForms Pro comes with a free file upload form template and a 14-day money-back guarantee!

And don’t forget, if you like this article, then please follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Using WordPress and want to get WPForms for free?

Enter the URL to your WordPress website to install.


  1. The source folder also contains a WordPress page template with a custom loop that displays published images for all users. You may wish to place more stringent validation on your image uploads. Remember, you’re accepting data from users who may accidentally or maliciously upload inappropriate files. Checking the file type and size is a good start.

    1. Hey Dovolena – Thanks for the feedback. A file type check is already included in the file upload field. By default, only secure file types as recommended by WordPress are allowed to be uploaded. You can allow to upload more file types though, if you wish using this tutorial.

      Same goes with File size. It will allow maximum file size that is allowed in your server config and you can reduce it further if you need as explained here

      I apologize but I am not sure I understand your info about that custom loop, could you please contact our support team here and provide some more info and we can surely check it further.


  2. Are customers able to upload as many images as they want or is the form limited to only accepting one image at a time?

    1. Hey Nivia – Great question!

      Yes, you can absolutely upload multiple files to a single File UPload field. To do this, please navigate to Field Options of the File Upload field >> Advanced option and select the style as “Modern”.

      Next, in the “Max File Number” field, you can choose the number of files that users are allowed to submit.For more details on using the File Upload field’s Modern style, please see our tutorial

      I hope this helps! If you have more questions about this, or if I’ve misunderstood your question in any way, please contact our support team. We’d be happy to help more from there! 🙂

  3. Hi I’m really interested in this feature and looking forward to using it for an interactive guestbook. Is it possible to have the photos uploaded saved in a particular folder or gallery in the WordPress site so that I can use the folder for an album or slider on the page itself or somewhere else?

    Thank you and good day!

    1. Hey Leonard – You can change the file upload location to your media library in WordPress as explained in this tutorial. Once they are in media library, you will be able to use them easily on galleries or sliders, etc.

      I hope this helps!

      1. Yes I saw that however wouldn’t that feature just save in the general media folder. Is it possible to have them automatically saved in another media folder so not to get mixed up with the website’s other media?

      2. Hey Leonard – I am afraid that feature is not available at the moment. We will keep that on our radar for the future!

        Thanks for the suggestion!

  4. Hi, Let’s say I have a website that sells photo frames. Is there a way to allow users to upload a photo and preview their image with the frames available on my site in real-time? Please help!

    1. Hey Husnul – I am afraid this option is not available at the moment. We will keep it on our radar for the future. Thanks for the suggestion!

      1. Hey Ramin – I apologize, this feature is not availabel yet and we’re not able to provide the solution you need for now or an ETA if or when this feature will be available.

        Due to the large number of feature suggestions we’re receiving from our users, we need to review and prioritize the features and enhancements to be included in each development cycle.

        Currently, new features/enhancements get prioritized based on several factors, such as their benefit to the majority of our plugin users, the demand for the feature, as well as development resources required. Unfortunately, for now, the feature you’ve requested is not something that many users have asked for.

        However, I made sure that your email is noted in the feature request report so that you will get an update in case this feature will be available in a release.


      1. Hey Divij – I am afraid, currently we don’t have any such option, I will add your vote to the feature request so that the dev team can consider this for the future.

        Sorry for the inconvenience.

  5. Hi, In my website have list of pdf files. I need to allow user to upload their pdf files in that same page automatically is their any way

  6. Is there a way to set a default image (from the media library) if the user doesn’t fill one in? In my case, I have a post submission form that includes an optional image.

    1. Hey Mike – Great question! All the files are stored in the upload folders of your WordPress install, you can even change them to be stored in the media section of your WordPress install.

      Once the files are in the media library, you can display them anywhere on your site, as you do with any other image present in your media library.

      I hope this helps!

  7. Hello, so I sell custom keychains with my customers pictures on it. They usually send me there pictures individually through email and sometimes it can be a hassle looking through them. Would this website allow a customer to upload a picture for a custom order.

    1. Hey Abigail – Great question! Yes, you can absolutely allow users to upload images on your site. The file upload field is available with any paid version of WPForms.

      For any further help on this, please feel welcome to reach out to our support team.

      Have a good one! 🙂

      1. Hi Grace, Do any versions of your plugins scan uploads from users to prevent uploading viruses or malware to the site/server?

      2. Hi Shane,

        WPForms should handle the bulk of file upload security for you — we don’t allow any unapproved or unauthorized files to be uploaded. So as long as you are using a reputable web host, there should be no issues.

        If you aren’t sure about what methods your web host uses to secure their servers, I would suggest asking them both about that and what they would do for you if your site were breached. Always best to know!

        You can also restrict file types and this will restrict specific file types from getting uploaded.

        If you have any questions, please drop us a line in support so we can assist.

        If you have a WPForms license, you have access to our email support, so please submit a support ticket. Otherwise, we provide limited complimentary support in the WPForms Lite support forum.

        Thanks! 🙂

    1. Hey Leslie- File Upload security depends upon the reputable web hosting. If you aren’t sure about what methods your web host uses to secure their servers, I would suggest asking them both about that and what they would do for you if your site were breached. Always best to know!

      Additionally, we add a unique hash to the end of the file (eg: my-logo-570543445db74.png) so that a malicious user couldn’t easily open up a bunch of files that have been uploaded to your site.

      Also, please know that we do not have a feature to upload the files to specific folders for each users.

      If you have any questions, please drop us a line in support so we can assist.

      If you have a WPForms license, you have access to our email support, so please submit a support ticket. Otherwise, we provide limited complimentary support in the WPForms Lite support forum.

      Thanks! 🙂

  8. Sounds great!
    But could you elaborate how to connect this form and image upload to a guestbook plugin? I’m looking for an option that lets visitors write af guestbook post with one or more pictures – preferrably displayed on my page as automatically as possible. However, for security/spam reasons I’d like to be able to accept/decline the guestbook posts/pictures.
    Suggestions on how to do this?

    1. Hey Seline-If the guestbook plugin has the ability to create custom post types (as most of the plugins do have this feature) then this can be achieved! You can make use of our Post submission addon and set up a custom post type there. With this, the image you upload can be used as the feature image for that custom post type.

      I hope this helps!

      If you have a WPForms license, you have access to our email support, so please submit a support ticket. Otherwise, we provide limited complimentary support in the WPForms Lite support forum.

      Thanks! 🙂

  9. I want users to be able to download my application for employment, complete it, and then upload it back to my website, and have it sent to my email/notify me. Is that something WP Forms can do?

    1. Hey Emily – We might need more details to provide the best possible solution for this. If your application form is in a downloadable format like pdf, users can download it via a link and then fill it. Once done, they should upload the filled pdf to a form created by WPForms using the file upload field.

      For further help with this, please submit a support ticket and our support team will be happy to help!

      Thanks 🙂

  10. Hi, is it possible to use the entry from the form to be used on another plugin, say WP Inventory Manager? I wanted a way to let my users add new items to the inventory backlog. So I take their input with this form and store/display what they enter using WP Inventory Manager.

    1. Hey Bryan- To achieve what you have mentioned would require some extensive customization. Please see our article with details about our data table structure.

      Basically, we store all form data in two tables within the native WordPress database. The field values for entries are stored in the entries table, and are encoded in a single JSON object for better storage.

      I hope this helps! 🙂

  11. Hi, can we make custom frame? user can upload their picture in to frame that we already prepare for it. just like photo booth.

    1. Hi Yohan! Our plugin only provides the tools for uploading pictures to your site, and do not have any features for displaying the uploaded images. I’m sorry we don’t have a solution for you on this, but if you have any further questions regarding WPForms, please don’t hesitate to contact us 🙂

  12. Hi, I want my users to be able to upload a description and an image to a page and only they can see this description and image. So they would be listening to tracks or watching videos and the description and photo they uploaded remains on the page when they are logged in, but only appears on the page for them. Thank You!

    1. Hey Julius- Currently, we do not have an inbuilt feature that shows entries/ images to logged-in users uploaded by them. I do agree it would be super helpful, though. I’ve made a note of the feature request and we’ll keep it on our radar as we plan out our roadmap for the future.

      In the meantime, if you’re willing to give some code a try we do have a code snippet that will allow you to display a table of all entries on the frontend of your site. In case you’d like to look into custom development options, we highly recommend using Codeable and form long term you can go for WPBuffs

      Thanks 🙂

      1. Hi Oliver,

        I apologize for the inconvenience as this feature is still under review and within the radar of the development team.

        Thank you for understanding.

  13. I’m making a website where people can upload images. It’s a comic website and I want to know how I can implement a system where people can create an account and upload their comics. Is that possible?

    1. Hi Jullian! Any of our paid versions will give you access to our File Upload Field, with which you can create forms that would allow people to upload their comics. We have an article here about creating forms to allow uploads.

      To create forms that allow people to create an account though would require our User Registration addon, which is available with our Pro level or higher licenses. More information about this addon can be found at:

      I hope this helps to clarify 🙂 If you have any further questions about this, please contact us.

  14. Hallo Kann man dieses formular auch so einstellen das die nutzer schon alles hochladen können jedoch erst nach prüfung durch den admin und manuelles freischalten das bild auf der website sichbar ist. ? Mit freundlichen Grüßen

    1. Hi there,

      That’s a good question! Please know that any files uploaded using the File Upload field in WPForms will not be visible on the front end of the website. However, please know that by default, the user-uploaded files are stored in the WPForms folder inside the Uploads directory of your site.

      If you’d prefer to upload the files to the WordPress Media Library, click on the File Upload field in the form builder. Then, under Advanced Options, check the box next to Store file in WordPress Media Library.

      In case it helps, please see our tutorial here for more details.

      If you are wanting to have the Posts approved, we do have the Post Submission addon where it includes the Post Featured Image which can be approved/ declined manually. Please see the complete guide on this addon.

      If you have a WPForms license, you have access to our email support, so please submit a support ticket. Otherwise, we provide limited complimentary support in the WPForms Lite support forum.

      Thanks 🙂

  15. Hi
    can conditions be set so only photos of a certain size and dimension is allowed to be uploaded?

    1. Hi There,

      We do not have a feature to set the dimension of an image and validate it for uploading. I will add your vote to consider this feature as an enhancement for the future. However, you can absolutely set the Maximum File Upload size as shown here.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

  16. Hi,

    Is this form accessibility compliant? How would the image get “alt” text? Would I have to add it myself?

    Thank you

  17. Is there a way to connect an uploaded PDF to the post (using Post Submissions) so it can be downloaded from the post on the front end?

    1. Hey Bekee, you would need our Post Submission addon which is available in the Pro or higher license level.

      Next, you will need to set up your custom meta fields specifically the file upload field. We recommend using the Advanced Custom Fields plugin for this. Here is a great guide on how to use custom fields. For more information how to add additional custom post meta, please take a look at our guide here.

      To display additional fields in the published post, your site theme will need to have the ability (or be customized) to display the custom fields. However, if it does not, you will need some custom implementation and we suggest using codeable or WPBuff.

      I hope this helps!

  18. hi, is there a way for me to allow the user to crop their image when uploading their profile image

    1. Hey Minesh – Currently we don’t have the feature in the file upload field to crop images when uploading. I do agree it would be super helpful, and I’ll add this into our feature request tracker so that it’s on the radar of our developers.

  19. Hi there

    I’m finding I cannot upload images from a mobile – they’re in JPEG not OIC format. When I download them to my computer they can be uploaded to the website via the form just not from any mobile. Is there something I can change?

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