Images and Alt Tags Acheiving Better Search Engine Ranking


Inside the Alt Tag

There is no such thing. Once again: alt is the attribute. There are elements, tags, and attributes. They mean different things.

Notice the additional attribute--alt. What does the alt attribute or tag do? Hover your mouse over the image to the left. Do you see the little text box pop up? See what it reads? Does it look familiar? :slight_smile:

No, I don't see it. That's because only Internet Explorer shows alt attributes as tooltips, and it has been fixed in IE8:

"The alt attribute is no longer displayed as the image tooltip when the browser is running in IE8 mode. Instead, the target of the longDesc attribute is used as the tooltip if present; otherwise, the title is displayed." Source: What's New in Internet Explorer 8 | Microsoft Learn

If you want to see tooltip, use title attribute (most browsers show this attribute as tooltip) for that:

So, hover over the images in your website. Do they have the important alt text included? At Thunder Data Systems, we adhere to proper coding standards!


Good for you. Next step would be to stop calling attributes tags, using validator to check your code for adherence to standards (alt attribute is required in HTML4, so missing it will make code invalid. For purely decorative images alt should be set to empty string: alt="", better yet, these images belong to CSS, not HTML), and remembering other browsers out there in which hovering over does not work.

Regards, Rimantas