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How to Use Alt Text in Your Images to Increase Your SEO

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What in the world is alt text?

Alt text (alternative text), also known as “alt attributes”, “alt descriptions”, or technically incorrectly as “alt tags”, are used within an HTML code to describe the appearance and function of an image on a page. Basically, alt text tells Google/Search Engines what a certain image contains. This is important for the following reasons:

  1. Adding alt text to photos is important for visually impaired users using screen readers. The alt text helps those readers better describe those images to someone who may not be able to see the actual image.
  2. Alt text is what is displayed in place of an image if an image file cannot be loaded for whatever reason
  3. Alt text provides search engines with a better understanding of what a specific image contains. This helps with indexing and also is very important if you are wanting your images to show up in a Google Image search.

How do I add Alt Text to my Images in Shopify?

  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Products > All products.
  2. Click the name of the product that you want to edit.
  3. From the product details page, click a product media item to see the Preview media page.
  4. Click Add ALT text.
  5. Enter your alt text, and then click Save ALT text.
  6. Click the X to exit the preview page.

How does alt text help my image SEO?

As we know, search engines are incredibly smart and they do their best to “see” what images contain but search engine crawlers still do not do what a human can do when identifying what exactly an image contains.

Let’s say you sell women’s graphic tees and you have a shirt that says “Mom so Hard” and the shirt is neon pink. You would not want to solely rely on the crawlers that they would pick up all the details that describe your image.

You want to think of your alt text almost as you would your keywords for your products. An example of good alt text would be something like this, “mom so hard t-shirt in hot pink with v-neck”. The more descriptive the alt text, the better. Now, when people head over to Google who are looking for a “mom shirt”, “mom shirt in pink”, “mom so hard shirt” etc., your images have a better chance of showing up in the image searches because you have clearly told the search engines what your image contains.

We suggest doing this for EVERY SINGLE IMAGE in your shop. It is a tedious task but it is what will separate your store from the competition. Break it down into small tasks everyday to make the process more manageable. Start with trying to do 5 products per day and you will slowly start to see increases in your organic search traffic!

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