Importance of ALT tags for website images
What are ALT tags?
ALT tags provide alternative text descriptions for images or other non-textual elements on a webpage. The purpose of an ALT tag is to provide context and meaning to the image, particularly for users who use assistive technologies such as screen readers, which can read aloud the ALT text to describe the image. This can make the webpage more inclusive and user-friendly, which can ultimately improve the user experience and drive more traffic to the site.
In addition to improving accessibility, ALT tags are beneficial for search engine optimization (SEO) by providing relevant information about the image for search engines to index. When creating ALT tags, it is important to use descriptive, concise, and accurate language that effectively conveys the content and function of the image.
Example: <img src=”example.jpg” alt=”A woman holding a red umbrella while walking in the rain in Cassopolis Michigan”>
How do ALT tags help search optimization of a website?
Search engines like ALT tags because they provide additional information about the content of the webpage. When a search engine crawls a webpage, it looks for various signals to understand what the content is about and how it should be indexed and ranked in search results. So ALT tags are especially important when there are less than 350 words of text copy in the body of any webpage.
By providing descriptive and relevant ALT tags, website owners can also help their images to appear in image search results, which can drive additional traffic to their website.
ALT tags help search engines to better understand the context and content of images on the webpage, which can improve the relevance and accuracy of search results.
Does adding a location to ALT tags help SEO?
Yes, adding location information to the ALT tags of images on a website can potentially help with organic SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for local search queries.
Including location information in ALT tags can provide additional context for search engines, indicating the geographic location where the image was taken or where the subject of the image is located.
This information can be particularly useful for local SEO, which is focused on improving a website’s visibility in search results for location-based queries. For example, if someone searches for “restaurants in Cass County Michigan” and a website has images with ALT tags containing location information for Cass County, it may be more likely to appear in the search results for that query.
However, it’s important to note that ALT tags should always accurately describe the content of the image, so if adding location information is not relevant to the image, it should not be included in the ALT tag. Additionally, ALT tags should not be stuffed with keywords, as this can be considered spammy and can actually harm SEO efforts.
What is the suggested number of characters for ALT tags?
There is no set number of characters for ALT tags, but it is generally recommended to keep them concise and descriptive. The goal is to provide enough information to convey the content and function of the image, without being too long or redundant.
In general, a good rule of thumb is to keep the ALT text under 125 characters or less, while still providing a meaningful and accurate description of the image. However, this may vary depending on the context and purpose of the image. For example, if the image is decorative or purely aesthetic, a shorter ALT tag may be appropriate. An example of this could be the ALT text description of the business logo. On the other hand, if the image contains important information or is a key part of the content, a longer ALT tag may be necessary to provide adequate context.
How do I add ALT text to images?
In WordPress, you can add ALT tags to your images in a few different ways:
When adding an image to a post or page:
- When you upload an image to WordPress and insert it into your post or page, you’ll see an option to add an “Alternative Text” field. This is where you can enter your ALT text. You can also add a title and caption for the image if desired.
In the media library:
- You can also add or edit ALT tags for images in the WordPress media library. Simply click on the image you want to edit, and you’ll see an option to add an “Alternative Text” field, along with other image details such as the title and caption.
Using a plugin:
- If you have many images on your site and want to add or update ALT tags in bulk, you can use a plugin such as “SEO Optimized Images” or “Automatic Alternative Text” to automate the process.
Regardless of the method you choose, it’s important to ensure that your ALT tags accurately describe the content and function of your images, while also using relevant keywords when appropriate. This can help to improve your website’s accessibility and search engine optimization (SEO).
How do I add ALT tags to my GoDaddy Sitebuilder website?
To add ALT tags to images in GoDaddy’s Sitebuilder, follow these steps:
- Log in to your GoDaddy Sitebuilder account and navigate to the page where you want to add an image with an ALT tag.
- Click on the “Insert” button and select “Image” from the dropdown menu.
- Upload the image you want to use and click on it to select it.
- In the Image Editor, click on the “Advanced” tab.
- Enter your ALT tag text in the “Alternative Text” field.
- Click “Save” to save your changes.
Note that in GoDaddy Sitebuilder, the ALT tag is referred to as “Alternative Text”. It’s important to use descriptive and relevant language when creating your ALT tags, while also incorporating relevant keywords when appropriate. This can help to improve the accessibility and organic SEO of your website.
This article on the importance of ALT tags is not intended to be all-inclusive. I have worked exclusively with the WordPress website platform since 2009. However, my more recent goals include helping local business owners with their websites where I’ve been called on to help with sites built on GoDaddy’s Sitebuilder, Shopify, Squarespace, and WIX. Did I miss any? All are good site-building platforms, and all provide the ability to add ALT tags to images. If you need additional help, please check out the help section of your website hosting services or YouTube.