Alt Text: What Is It & How To Write It

Woman looking away

What Is Alt Text?

What Are The Uses Of Alt Text?

  • Alt text helps people with disabilities (for example, using screen readers) learn about the image’s content.
  • Alt text also helps search engine bots understand the image’s content and context.

Why Alt Text Is Important

Why Alt Text Is Important For SEO

Why Alt Text Is Important For Accessibility

Alt Text Examples

Good Alt Text Examples

<img src="google-search-console-coverage-report.jpg" alt="The Coverage Report in Google Search Console showing the number of indexed and excluded pages"> <img src="google-search-console.jpg" alt="Google Search Console tool from Google"> <img src="screaming-frog-html-pages.jpg" alt="List of HTML pages in Screaming Frog"> <img src="screaming-frog" alt="Screaming Frog crawl in progress">

Bad And/Or Spammy Alt Text Examples

<img src="google-search-console-coverage-report.jpg"alt="seo audit free, seo audit cheap, seo audit specialist, seo audit, seo audits"> <img src="google-search-console.jpg" alt="google seo ,seo google, google, seo, google search console seo"> <img src="screaming-frog-html-pages.jpg" alt="seo auditor, seo audit, seo audits"> <img src="screaming-frog" alt="seo audit">

Common Alt Text Mistakes

  • Failure to use the alt text or using empty alt text.
  • Using the same alt text for different images.
  • Using very general alt text that does not actually describe the image. For example, using the alt text of “dog” on the photo of a dog instead of describing the dog in more detail, its color, what it is doing, what breed it is, etc.
  • Automatically using the name of the file as the alt text — which may lead to very unfriendly alt text, such as “googleseachconsole” or “google-search-console” or “photo2323,” depending on the name of the file.

Alt Text Writing Tips

  • Do not stuff keywords into the alt text. It won’t help your web page rank for these stuffed keywords.
  • Describe the image in detail, but still keep it relatively short. Avoid adding multiple sentences into the alt text.
  • Use your target keywords, but in a natural way, as part of the image’s description. If your target keyword does not fit into the image’s description, don’t use it.
  • Don’t use text on images. All text should be added in the form of HTML code.
  • Don’t write “this is an image of.” Google and users know that this is an image. Just describe its content.
  • Make sure you can visualize the image’s content by just reading its alt text. That is the best exercise to make sure your alt text is OK.

How To Check If A Page Uses The Alt Text

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Computer Scientist on the way! Grad student @MIT I find meaning in Math, Artificial Intelligence, Philosophy, and Cinema

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Dianne B. Zee

Dianne B. Zee

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Computer Scientist on the way! Grad student @MIT I find meaning in Math, Artificial Intelligence, Philosophy, and Cinema