Alt Text for Images: The Unsung Hero of Ecommerce SEO
Images are an essential component of ecommerce websites. They can convey vital information about products, enhance the user experience, and ultimately drive conversions. However, what happens when images fail to load correctly, or the user has visual impairments? That's where alt text comes in.
What is Alt Text?
Alt text (alternative text) is a description of an image that appears in place of the image if it fails to load or when it is inaccessible. Alt text helps users with visual impairments, and it also provides context to search engines.
How to Add Alt Text to Your Images
Adding alt text to your images is pretty simple. When adding images to your website, most website builders, including WordPress and Shopify, provide the option to add alt text. In the HTML code, you can add alt text using the "alt" attribute.
3 Image Alt Text Examples (the Good and the Bad)
When it comes to writing alt text, there are a few things to keep in mind. Below are three examples of good and bad alt text:
1. Keyword vs. Detail
- Bad: "Sneakers"
- Good: "Men's Running Shoes - Nike Air Max"
2. Detail vs. Specificity
- Bad: "Black Dress"
- Good: "Women's Black Cocktail Dress - Knee-Length, Sleeveless"
3. Specificity vs. Context
- Bad: "Chicago Skyline"
- Good: "View of Chicago Skyline from Navy Pier"
Image Alt Text Best Practices
- Be descriptive and specific.
- Avoid keyword stuffing.
- Only include relevant information.
- Keep it concise (around 125 characters).
- Don't use "image of" or "picture of" in the alt text.
How Alt Text Affects SEO
Alt text has a significant impact on SEO. Alt text provides search engines with context about the image, and this information helps search engines understand the content on the page. Additionally, alt text can help images rank in Google's image search results.
Why is Image Alt Text Important?
Alt text is essential for three primary reasons: accessibility, user experience, and image traffic. Alt text makes images accessible to users with visual impairments, enhances the user experience by providing context, and helps images rank in Google's image search results.
Without alt text, users with visual impairments wouldn't be able to understand the content of an image. Alt text provides a description of the image, which allows these users to understand what the image is about.
Adding alt text to your images can enhance the overall user experience. Alt text provides context for users who may not understand the purpose of the image. Additionally, if images fail to load, alt text will appear in place of the image, preventing users from seeing broken images.
Proper alt text can help your images rank in Google's image search results. This can generate additional traffic to your website, increase brand awareness, and ultimately, drive conversions.
Adding Image Alt Text to Your Website
If you're using a website builder like WordPress or Shopify, adding alt text to your images is straightforward. When adding images to your website, look for the option to add alt text. In the HTML code, add alt text using the "alt" attribute. If you have a large number of images, you can use bulk editing tools to add alt text to multiple images at once.