Illustration of Man Using Laptop Next to Website Page with Working Gears

 

The success of SEO (search engine optimization) depends on a combination of on-page and off-page elements, but there’s one that doesn’t get as much attention: the image alt tag.

Maybe you’ve heard the term before, or maybe not. Either way, one thing is for sure – image alt tags are important for SEO work.

But that’s not all. Let me explain.

What are Image Alt Tags?

The alt tag, or alt text, of an image stands for “alternative text.” Image alt tags use text to describe the appearance and function of an image, making the content understandable by search engines and accessible to all users. Alternative text is accessed when an image cannot be displayed or read.

Here’s an example of an image alt tag in action:

A/B Versions of Website Pages

 

Optimized Image Alt Tag in Source Code

The alt tag in the source code shows the text that will display for the image above.

You’ll notice the text in the alt tag (Illustration of A/B Tests for Website Pages) describes the image shown in the example. When you create your own image alt tags, you want to be as specific as possible about what’s in the image. This is because accessibility is increasingly important for making your content available to all users, but also because you want search engines to understand what your content is about – including your images – so they can help rank your pages in a way that helps users find the most accurate and helpful information.

Other SEO Elements

In addition to alt tags, you might want to read about some other best practices: