Do you know how to use Alt Text correctly, or even why it exists?
What is Alt Text for?
To know how to use something correctly, you need to know what it is for. There are two main jobs for Alt Text:
1. To assist the visually impaired
The best Alt Text will improve accessibility for the visually impaired. The information in the Alt Text box can be used by the screen reader application to describe the images on the screen to a visually impaired person.
2. To provide a description if the image does not load
Nobody likes to look at a blank screen and wonder what should be there. It is slightly less frustrating then to read the Alt Text while you are waiting.
What to write as Alt Text
The description is only going to be as good as the information that has been input. Therefore, we bloggers have a responsibility to make sure that the information we use in our blogs is accurate. It is so important that we know how to use Alt Text correctly in order to provide the best experience for all users of our web pages.
The bonus of Alt Text is that it helps search engines index the image. This absolutely does not mean that you should fill it with keywords though.
The description should simply contain enough information to form the picture in our minds.
Match your image to your keywords
As an example, say you have written a post about going apple picking, and you have found the following image on Unsplash:
Think how you would describe the picture to someone who can’t see it.
Perhaps, good Alt Text may go something like this:
A woman picking an apple from a tree
However, it doesn’t tell the whole story.
Something better could be:
A woman wearing a checked scarf picking a red apple from a tree
If you need to amend the Alt Text on your WordPress blog, you can change it via the media library. Or, when you are editing a blog post, the Alt Text box can be found on the right in the image block settings.
Related post: https://marieceline.co.uk/blogging-basic-seo-tips
When you upload a photo to Instagram you can now add Alt Text. Look out for the advanced settings. Remember to keep it simple and relevant.
I know some bloggers think that you should just stuff the Alt Text field with lots of key words or phrases, or just not bother at all – but think how frustrating that is to someone with impaired vision. Therefore, I hope that you have found this post useful and that you will have fun turning your blog pictures into words.
Thanks for reading!