What Is Alternative Text In Canva?

In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know all about the alternative text in Canva.

alternative text in canva

What is an Alternative Text in Canva?

Alternative text in Canva, often referred to as “alt text,” is a short description of an image that serves a critical purpose in web accessibility.

It provides context for individuals who cannot view the image, primarily those who are visually impaired or blind, and use screen readers to access content.

You can find the in-built option to add alt text in Canva as well as other graphic design tools including Adobe Express (formally known as Adobe Spark).

Related: 3 Easy Steps To Publish Canva Website For FREE

Why Add Alt Text In Canva?

When designing, whether you’re using templates or creating your design elements from scratch, consider adding alt text to your images.

For instance, if you’re using a background image or a decorative image, adding alt text can help screen reader users understand the context. The alt text should describe the image in a concise and informative manner.

  1. Accessibility Compliance: With alt text, you’re taking a step towards making your website more inclusive. It aids visually impaired users in understanding the content better, enhancing the overall user experience.
  2. SEO Optimization: Alt text provides an opportunity to include your keywords, allowing machines to digest it, helping improve the website’s SEO. While the main purpose is accessibility, the inclusion of relevant keywords can boost your website’s visibility.

How to Add Alternative Text in Canva

Canva allows users to add alternative text to their images, which helps maintain accessibility standards.

Step 1: Open Image Settings

After you’ve uploaded your desired image to Canva, click on the image to select it.

In the toolbar pop-up just above the design page, select the three-dotted button to open the drop-down options menu.

select the image three dots more options in canva

Step 2: Select Alternative Text

Select Alternative Text at the bottom of the menu.

select alternative text in canva

Step 3: Add Alternative Text

Here, you can input your alternative text in the Alternative Text field. Then click the Save button.

add alternative text and click save button in canva

Best Practices for Writing Effective Alt Text

accessibility checker for alt text in canva

While adding alt text is important, it’s equally vital to ensure it’s effective. Now that you know what is alternative text in Canva, here are a few tips to help you craft meaningful alt text you can add to your images:

  1. Be Descriptive: The alt text should accurately depict the image. It doesn’t need to be lengthy but should be precise enough to convey the image’s context.
  2. Avoid Keyword Stuffing: While including relevant keywords is helpful for SEO, don’t overdo it. The primary purpose of alt text is accessibility, not SEO.
  3. Avoid Phrases Like “Image Of”: It’s assumed that the alt text refers to an image, so it’s unnecessary to include such phrases.

After adding an alternative text to your image, upload it to your website and use an accessibility checker to scan your web pages. It can help to identify web accessibility issues and what you can do to fix them.

Limitations of Alt Text in Canva

While alt text plays a crucial role, there are limitations in Canva. It doesn’t automatically generate alt text for images. Therefore, the responsibility falls to you to add it manually.

The Future Of Adding Alt Text in Canva

With technological advancements, automatic alt text generation may be incorporated into Canva in the future.

This feature could harness the power of AI to generate accurate and useful alt text, taking a significant step towards making the internet more accessible for everyone.

Final Thoughts: Canva Alternative Text

Alternative text is an essential aspect of online content creation, and platforms like Canva recognize its significance by providing the tool to add it to your images.

While it might seem like an insignificant detail, alt text can make a world of difference in making the internet a more inclusive space.

So next time you’re designing on Canva, remember to add the alt text. It won’t take much of your time, and you’ll be contributing to a more accessible web. Isn’t that something worth investing a few extra minutes in?

Alternative Text: Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Text Alternatives Used For?

Text alternatives serve as an accessibility tool in digital content creation. They cater primarily to people who cannot see or hear the content, aiding them in understanding the context of the visual or audio elements.

Uses of Text Alternatives

  1. Supporting Visually Impaired Users: Text alternatives provide descriptions of visual elements, making content accessible for users with visual impairments. These descriptions can be read by screen readers, providing a better understanding of the visual content.
  2. Assisting Search Engines: Search engines can’t “see” images or “hear” audio, but they can understand text. Text alternatives help search engines understand the context of non-text content, potentially improving the content’s SEO performance.

What Is The Difference Between Caption And Alt Text?

While both alt text and captions provide descriptions of images, their usage and purpose differ significantly.

What is Alt Text?

Alt text is a short, descriptive text that provides an explanation of an image for individuals who can’t view it.

It’s read by screen readers for visually impaired users and displayed when an image fails to load on a website.

What is a Caption?

On the other hand, a caption is a brief description that appears alongside an image, video, or audio file. It’s visible to all users and provides additional context or information about the visual or audio content.

Key Differences

Here are the two main differences:

  1. Visibility: Alt text is not visible on a webpage unless the image fails to load, while captions are always visible and placed close to the image.
  2. Audience: Alt text is intended for screen readers to improve web accessibility, while captions are meant for all viewers, adding context to an image.

What Is An Example Of Alt Text For An Image?

Crafting effective alt text is an art. It should be brief, yet descriptive enough to convey the context of the image. Here are a few examples:

  1. If the image is a photo of a golden retriever playing in the park, the alt text could be: “Golden retriever joyfully fetching a red frisbee in a sunlit park.”
  2. If it’s an infographic about global warming effects, the alt text might be: “Infographic detailing the effects of global warming, including rising sea levels and extreme weather patterns.”
  3. For a company logo, the alt text could simply be: “Company’s name logo.”

Who Primarily Uses Alternative Text?

The primary users of alternative text, or alt text, are individuals with visual impairments. They utilize screen readers, which read out the alt text, providing the context and content of the image. This allows these users to understand the image without actually seeing it.

Apart from visually impaired users, alt text is also utilized by search engines. Search engines can’t “view” images, but they can read the alt text, which helps them understand the image’s context and improves the website’s SEO performance.

Why Should You Add Alternative Text To Your Messages?

Adding alternative text to your messages is essential for several reasons:

Improving Accessibility

Alt text makes your content accessible to visually impaired users. It helps them understand the context of any images included in your messages, enhancing their overall experience.

Enhancing SEO

Alt text contributes to your content’s SEO performance. By including relevant keywords in the alt text, search engines can better understand the context of your images, potentially boosting your content’s visibility.

Ensuring Content Integrity

If for some reason, an image in your message fails to load, the alt text will be displayed in its place. This maintains the integrity of your message, ensuring that your audience doesn’t miss out on important information.

Why Should You Add Alternative Text To Your Images?

Alternative text or alt text is essential for various reasons:

Enhancing Accessibility

The primary reason to add alt text is to enhance web accessibility. Visually impaired users rely on screen readers to interpret and describe images. Alt text provides these descriptions, making your content more accessible to these users.

Boosting SEO Performance

Alt text can help improve your website’s SEO performance. Search engines cannot view images but can read the alt text, allowing them to understand the image’s context. By including relevant keywords in your alt text, you can enhance your content’s visibility on search engine results.

Preserving Content Integrity

If an image fails to load for any reason, the alt text will be displayed in its place. This helps preserve the content’s integrity, ensuring your audience still gets the intended message.

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