Not everyone is familiar with the term alt text. We often get the question what it means. When people speak of an alt text, they actually mean the abbreviation for alternative text. This is a text that only becomes visible when the information on a page cannot be seen by users. For example, due to a technical fault or a visual impairment. In such cases, an alt text helps to make the elements on the page clear after all. An alt text is therefore an aid for users who are unable to read a web page for whatever reason. Not only is it considered an aid, but it also has an impact on technical SEO. But how do you apply it correctly? And what exactly is an alt text or alt tag?
An alt text or alternative text is applied when users cannot see or read certain types of content properly. For example, because an image cannot be displayed temporarily or because the user has a visual impairment. In that case, the written content on the site itself is not always well understood. After all, the images reinforce the text. Using an alt tag in the HTML helps these users to understand the text properly. It describes exactly what the visual image looks like and what is important to know.
It is important to know that this description is not directly visible. Users can find it when hovering over the image or using a screen reader. An alt text offers the solution in many cases. Yet it is not always easy to compose. Some images, for instance, are very difficult to translate into text. Think, for example, of abstract images.
An alt text is not only used to support users but is also very effective for SEO purposes. After all, to determine the quality score of a website, crawlers look at every site. Be aware that these are robots. They are not people who can study everything. As a result, some information is lost. You often see this happen with images. The web crawler can't rank the image properly and the subtitle is not always descriptive enough either. By specifically describing the image in the alt text, you ensure that the robots can 'read' this content better. In this way, they are able to discover the corresponding keywords and you will eventually end up higher in the ranking and therefore also in search results.