This includes screen readers and browsers that block images, but it also includes users who are sight-impaired or otherwise unable to visually identify an image. ALT tags are also used for those who surf the web with images turned off or users that have text only browsers. If you're writing about photography, for instance, photographic examples of your insight are crucial to your visitors' reading experience. Despite your best SEO efforts, you could still be missing out on another source of organic traffic: your website's images. The filename explains the topic that the image represents to the search engines. The text alternative for the image should convey the action that will be initiated (the purpose of the image) rather than a description of the image. The ALT text should simply repeat, word-for-word, the text contained within that image. Alternative text allows Google to place images in search results as well as aid in assisting visually impaired users. For example, the alt text for an image of a question mark that links to a help page should be “Contact Support” rather than “question mark.” Images with complex information: If the image is a chart… hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(53, 'f55ac8df-26f8-41f5-b63a-fa80e97d2fec', {}); More and more, the topics that many businesses and publishers create content on require images to accompany their words. Do not repeat the surrounding textual content as alt text or use phrases referring to images, such as, "a graphic of" or "an image of." For example, automatic alt text once interpreted a picture of my brother standing outside as being a picture of a car. hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(53, 'b86a9513-efae-441c-8b14-17ab402495e8', {}); Originally published Sep 28, 2018 7:00:00 AM, updated September 23 2020, Image Alt Text: What It Is, How to Write It, and Why It Matters to SEO, How to Successfully Migrate a Website Without Harming SEO [Checklist], How to Prevent Redirect Chains from Destroying Your SEO, The Simplified Guide to Google's RankBrain Algorithm. Focus on writing descriptive alt text that provides context to the image and if possible, includes your target keyword, and leave it at that. This helps me understand the use cases of the feature better and keeps my focus on the people I’m designing for. Don't cram your keyword into every single image's alt text. But what if your image doesn't have official context (like a place name) by which to describe it? This alt text is a better alternative because it is far more descriptive of what's in the image. If they don't understand, or get it wrong, it's possible you could either rank for unintended keywords or miss out on ranking altogether. Neither of these examples are recommended. Be descriptive and specific. The best format for alt text is sufficiently descriptive but doesn't contain any spammy attempts at keyword stuffing. Try it >>. Your alt text would be something like this: “Beautiful landscape photography of a lake with mountain view.”. With the bad alt text (above) in mind, better alt text for this image might be: The line of alt text above technically follows the first rule of alt text -- be descriptive -- but it's not being descriptive in the right way. Understanding what makes good alt text is subtle and important. In most cases, an image will only have a function if it is contained within a link (or is an image map hotspot or a button). 2. If you must do so, explain what your photo says within your alt text. If an image fails to load, alt text will display in its place. This example dives even deeper into the topic of business school, and specifies that the ideal audience for this webpage is teachers. While your first priority should be describing and providing context to the image, if it makes sense to do so, include your keyword in the alt text of at least one image on the page. Alt text for images in galleries on Squarespace is generally added in the “Image Title” box. This is less of an alt text-specific best practice and more of a general SEO-friendly web development tenet. gives more details than alt text and allows someone to learn more about what is in an image that goes beyond alt text One of the most important things image alt text can do for you is turn your images into hyperlinked search results -- giving your website yet another way to receive organic visitors. For example, important context may be the setting, the emotions on people's faces, the colors, or the relative sizes. Therefore, the image's alt text needs to reflect that. Alternative text, or “alt text” describes the content of images, graphs and charts. So use relevant and short image filename for your images. Adding alternative text to photos is first and foremost a principle of web accessibility. One of the main purposes of ALT tags is for the benefit of visually impaired users who use screen readers when browsing. Also called “alt tags” and “alt descriptions,” alt text is the written copy that appears in place of an image on a webpage if the image fails to load on a user’s screen. Premium plans, Connect your favorite apps to HubSpot. If you spend time optimizing your blog or website's content, headers, subheaders, and meta descriptions for search engines, the following image should alarm you: Today, Google's search engine results pages (SERPs) deliver just as many image results as they do text-based results. Images without alt text cause problems for screen readers because there’s no way to communicate the content of the image to the user. Provide alternative text, or alt text, when a screen reader needs to understand the message provided by the images on a page. Google won't dock you points for poorly written alt text, but you'll be in trouble if you use your alt text as an opportunity to stuff as many relevant keywords as you can think of into it. Stack of blueberry pancakes with powdered sugar. We're committed to your privacy. Titles should add extra information that couldn’t be included in the alt text. Specifies an alternate text for an image. How Can Alt Text Be Used and Added To Your Images? Continuing our article series on accessibility requirements, Alternative Text or Alt-Text is an area that is often misunderstood. See all integrations. Using alt text to stuff keywords into fragmented sentences adds too much fluff to the image and not enough context. Free and premium plans, Content management system software. ALT tags are used to describe the image or what the image is representing. ALT text should always describe the content of the image and should repeat the text word-for-word. As a UX designer, I think it’s helpful to review exactly who will be using a specific feature and why. In many cases, Google searchers don't want the classic blue, hyperlinked search result -- they want the image itself, embedded inside your webpage. Monitor your SEO performance and get insights to increase organic traffic. The filename for this image is: image src=“cookie.jpg”. The text should explain where the link goes if the image is inside an element. The actual image looks like this: Captions work best for: Images that require a heading to understand what the context of the image: For example, portraits of people or pictures of geographic locations may benefit from a caption to ensure everyone is aware what the image is about. Don't use images as text. Alt Text (also known as alternative text or alt attribute) is Below are some examples of functional image situations. This can’t be read by a screen reader because it is a picture. Alt text is a tenet of accessible web design. Spot opportunity in target markets with local metrics and top SERP competitors. Alt text is, first and foremost, designed to provide text explanations of images for users who are unable to see them. One of the first steps to web and document accessibility, providing accurate and appropriate descriptions for an image, can be critical to the overall goal of ensuring that content is accessible. These are important specifics Google would need to properly index the image if it's on, say, a blog post about Boston sports. When you view the source code of your page, you can identify where the image is by looking for a line of code similar to this one: Do you see where it says “alt="alt-text-example-1.jpg"”? Consider the examples below. Visually impaired users using screen readers will be read an alt attribute to better understand an on-page image. As with alt text, an image requires a caption if it conveys important information. Although it's not always visible to regular visitors, alt text for images helps sea… So what is alt text for images? Broaden your SEO knowledge with resources for all skill levels. 3. If a form on your website uses an image as it’s “submit” button, give it an alt attribute. The same applies for any other text embedded within an image. For example, alt text tells someone that there’s a puddle on the floor, and image description tells someone that the puddle on the floor is in the middle of the floor and it’s orange juice. But, there's more to be said about this image. Keep it (relatively) short. Those keywords might be important to the publisher, but not to Google. Along with implementing image title and file naming best practices, including alt text may also contribute to image SEO. One of the first steps to web and document accessibility, providing accurate and appropriate descriptions for an image, can be critical to the overall goal of ensuring that content is accessible. People who use screen readers are usually either completely blind o… Free and premium plans, Customer service software. Image with text According to WCAG, images of text are not allowed. The basic template of ALT Text is HubSpot users: Here's what this image optimization window looks like in the CMS inside your HubSpot portal: Your alt text is then automatically written into the webpage's HTML source code, where you can edit the image's alt text further if your CMS doesn't have an easily editable alt text window. By adding alt text and image descriptions, barriers are lifted and more people can access your content. For example, for the alt text of this non-linked image you could use the words in the image itself: If the content that the image conveys is presented within text in the surrounding context of the image, then an empty alt attribute may suffice. Determining if the image presents content and what that content is can be much more difficult. It should convey the purpose of the image, not describe the image. Avoid keyword stuffing. This isn't just a stack of "pancakes" (as the first alt text example demonstrated); it's a stack of blueberry pancakes with a dusting of powdered sugar! You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. Explore using the longdesc="" tag for more complex images that require a longer description. Missing or empty alt values create significant problems for screen reader users because functional images are essential to … If you want to expand on the navigation, such as in this example, you can use the title attribute. That’s where your alt text lives. Using alt text on your images can make for a better user experience, but it may also help earn you both explicit and implicit SEO benefits. Alternative text, or “alt text” describes the content of images, graphs and charts. Written by Braden Becker It varies depending on your CMS, but typically, images will have a rich text module in which you can edit and optimize the images on your site. However, you may have come across people using the incorrect term "alt tags" as well. in your alt text. Icons: alt text for icons should be the equivalent to the information intended by the icon, such as “Download PDF” or “Visit our Facebook Page” Images as Links: If the image is being used to link to another page, the alt text should describe what will happen when the image is clicked (rather than what it looks like). When writing alt text, consider what details the author thought was most important. Let's look at a few examples of alt text for this image of a delicious-looking stack of blueberry pancakes: Okay:pancakes. The highlighted text shows the alt text (alt attribute) of the image at left. alt and title attributes of an image are commonly referred to as alt tag if an image truly doesn't convey any meaning/value and is just there for design purposes, it should live within the CSS, not HTML. Find out the top 6 rules for creating awesome ALT Text and improve your SEO today! Don't include "image of," "picture of," etc. It should be brief: less than 250 characters. Alt text can miss the mark in three different ways. It's already assumed your alt text is referring to an image, so there's no need to specify it. For example,”Image of a smiling man” is not good alt text. It never hurts to double check alt text and make sure that both the computer and humans are in agreement as to what is in the picture. When explaining how to use a certain type of software, screenshots of that software are often the best way to demonstrate it. Stay up to date with the latest marketing, sales, and service tips and news. Consider performing a basic audit of your existing content to see where you can incorporate alt text into previously untagged pictures. Amazing ALT Text: alt=“man sitting on chair with black Canon camera”. Quick access to whitepapers, reports, guides, webinars, and case studies. Image alt attributes (often referred to incorrectly as ‘alt tags’) should specify relevant and descriptive alternative text about the purpose of an image and appear in the source of the HTML like the below example. Every 2 weeks. Image buttons should have an alt attribute that describes the function of the button like, "search", "apply now", “sign up,” etc. The 10 most valuable pieces of content we can find for SEOs. The following examples show multiple kinds of images, and how alt text … Describe the image as specifically as possible. Because search engines can't read text within your images, you should avoid using images in place of words. Image titles and alt texts are both attributes in an image tag that describe the content of that image. STEP 4: ALT-TEXT. Using null alt text. Image titles appear in image tags like this: The first line of code actually doesn't contain any alt text at all (notice the quotes are empty), while the second example demonstrates keyword stuffing in alt text. Content editors can generally provide alt text at the same time they upload images into websites. For example, if your article's head keyword is "how to generate leads," you might use "lead generation" in your alt text, since "how to" might be difficult to include in image alt text naturally. text. Try to fit the image at your context of the article; Don’t use irrelevant images then you can’t able to write its proper ALT Text. With on-page keyword usage still pulling weight as a search engine ranking factor, it's in your best interest to create alt text that both describes the image and, if possible, includes a keyword or keyword phrase you're targeting. If you’re reading this article, I’m guessing you have at least some awareness of what alt text is for and how it’s used. See how complete and consistent your business’s location appears across the web. Whether or not you perform SEO for your business, optimizing your website's image alt text is your ticket to creating a better user experience for your visitors, no matter how they first found you. While search engine image recognition technology has vastly improved over the years, search crawlers still can't "see" the images on a website page like we can, so it's not wise to leave the interpretation solely in their hands. Keyword stuffing image tags like this: for example, ” image of smiling. Surf the web with images turned off or users that have text only browsers provide better image context/descriptions search... # 34 David Ortiz clocking one over right field boost your search engine friendly but does n't contain spammy. Known as `` alt descriptions '' or `` alt tags are used to describe it users functional... 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