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Alt Text and Why You Should Use It

What is alt text and why is it important?

Alt text (also called alt descriptions) are the words that appear when an image fails to load. It can also often be seen when you roll your mouse over an image. The text should accurately describe the image and how it relates to the main body text or page it accompanies.

There are three important functions of alt text:

1. It makes your site more accessible. Visually impaired users use alt text to understand the image on the page.

2. If a file cannot be loaded for some reason, it will give the page user a description of what is supposed to be there to create some context.

3. The text can improve SEO rankings if properly used as the description will allow search engine crawlers to index the image properly, and potentially increase the ranking of your site to a relevant search.

Alt text should be brief (but not too brief) and accurately describe the image with as many keywords as possible (although not too many). There is definitely a fine balance your site builder should strive for.

Keep in mind that alt text DOES NOT replace image descriptions, which should also be used!

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