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Accessibility Advice Series: Adding Alt-Text to Website Images

9 May 2023

Tech & Innovation

A close up of a keyboard featuring 3 particular keys depicting Blind Deaf and Disabled logos.

Alt text, also known as “alternative text” or “alt attributes,” is a crucial component of website accessibility. It provides a text-based description of images for users who are visually impaired or are using screen readers to browse the internet.

This allows users to understand the content of an image and the greater context of what they are reading on a whole. Without alt text, these users would be at a loss or confused as often as an image is presented within the medium they are attempting to consume.

To create alt text, simply add the “alt” attribute to the HTML code for an image. For example:

<img src=”my-image.jpg” alt=”A beautiful sunrise over the ocean”>

The alt text should accurately and concisely describe the content of the image. It should include relevant keywords and avoid unnecessary details. For example, the following alt text would not be effective:

<img src=”my-image.jpg” alt=”A picture I took with my phone this morning“>

In this case, the alt text does not provide any information about the content of the image. A better alt text would be:

<img src=”my-image.jpg” alt=”A beautiful sunrise over the ocean“>

Overall, including alt text on images is a simple but effective way to improve the navigation of a website and ensure that all users can access its content easily and quickly, including those with visual, cognitive or motor impairments.
It takes just a few extra seconds to add alt text to an image, but it can make a significant difference!

If you’d like any more information about how to make things more digitally accessible, check out our website – it’s full of advice that you can use to be more inclusive to people who are blind, deafblind or have low vision. Alternatively, give us a call on 0800 24 33 33 to speak to someone about any other accessibility help you require.


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