Alt text helps your stats

We’ve already discussed why you need to add an image to your social media posts, which you can read about here. Images receive more interactions than other types of content on Facebook or Twitter, but a lot of us don’t caption our images. Even more, those of us who use a Content Management System (CMS) have a tendency to overlook the ‘alt-text’ box.

This is a bad idea. The reason for this is because Google uses the alt attribute to gather information about the image. The ‘alt text’ of your image should be descriptive, and detail the contents of the image concisely. This will allow Google to determine the best image for what the searcher has asked. It is an integral part of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), meaning that it helps your website get more hits for organic searches.

Image and text

Adding text is important

Likewise, alt text will enable visually impaired users, or users with limited or slow internet bandwidth, access to the information contained within the image. This means that even if the image doesn’t load, users will know what the image is of. Similarly, you should ensure your image file name is descriptive. If your web page lacks text that is suited to the page containing the image, Google will use the image filename as the snippet for search results. So, try to refrain from naming files “IMG000999.jpg”, and make sure you fill out the alt attribute.

However, make sure you don’t go overboard with keywords, because keyword stuffing could create negative user interactions, and ultimately lead your website to be marked as spam. The best thing to do is to make sure you describe your images, but without making them too keyword heavy. Ensuring your images have an accompanying text relevant to your post will help boost your webpage’s rating in search engines.

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Michelle O'Connor

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