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  • Writer's pictureBrent Payne

Images with missing alt text

This indicates that an image on your website is included in your pages without alternative text.


Why is this important?

Alternative text, or alt text, contributes to the understanding of images on a webpage by providing textual context, especially important for users with visual impairments using screen readers to navigate the internet.

Furthermore, alt text can improve how search engines index images, possibly resulting in better visibility in image searches.


Therefore, not providing alt text is a disservice to accessible web design and a missed chance for search engine optimization (SEO).


What does the Optimization check?

The Optimization is activated if an image is embedded using the src attribute in an <img> tag on any page of the website and lacks an alt attribute or has an empty one.


Note: Images used for tracking purposes that are typically 1x1 pixels are not included in this Optimization.


Examples that trigger this Optimization

Here is an example of an <img> tag without an alt attribute:


And here is one with an empty alt attribute:

<img src="https://example.com/image.png" alt="" />


Examples that pass this Optimization

An <img> tag with a descriptive alt attribute looks like this:

<img src="https://example.com/image.png" alt="Description of the image" />


Alternatively, an <img> tag marked as presentational with WAI-ARIA:

<img src="https://example.com/image.png" role="presentation" />


Why is this Optimization marked 'Opportunity'?

This Optimization is categorized as an Opportunity because addressing it may enhance your site's search traffic potential.


Regarding accessibility, excluding alternative text or a role of "presentation" is not considered best practice. From an SEO standpoint, while not detrimental, it can be a missed opportunity, especially for images like logos and icons which may not significantly contribute to SEO.


How do you get more data from Sitebulb?

To investigate further, access the list of images identified by this Optimization.

The provided list will show each image once, along with the number of URLs that reference it without alt text. You can learn more about each image by following these steps:

  1. Examine each listed image to understand its use and occurrence across the website.

  2. Export the data to analyze references for all images in bulk via a spreadsheet software.

#1 Investigating each image in turn

Discover the number of unique URL references per image through the 'No. URLs Referencing Resource' column and view more details or export the list for deeper analysis.


#2 Bulk exporting all image references

To review all image references collectively, utilize the export functionality:

Click the export button, which enables you to observe the referencing URLs alongside those without alt text per image.


Further Reading

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