The Ins and Outs of Instagram Alt Text

Episode #186 the Wingnut Social Podcast

Do you know what alt text is? Most website-savvy people have some familiarity with how it works with images on your website. You add a short-but-sweet description and it helps your images get discovered in a Google Search. But Instagram alt text is NOT the same. How is it different? What is it for? Darla and Natalie demystify Instagram’s alt text in this Wingnut Social. Monday Marketing Minisode. 

What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social

  • [0:38] Natalie: tuning in from an undisclosed remote location
  • [1:17] Instagram alt text: What is it?
  • [2:44] What Instagram alt text doesn’t do
  • [3:33] How to craft Instagram alt text
  • [4:45] How to edit Instagram alt text
  • [5:57] Blooper Reel!

Resources & People Mentioned

Instagram alt text 101

Alt text—the commonly used shorthand for alternative text—is a description you can add to your photographs on Instagram (similar to your website) that is meant to describe exactly what’s in the photo. It allows people with visual impairments to get a description of what it is they’re unable to see. 

Instagram will add alt text for you if you don’t add it yourself. But if you do want it to be 100% accurate, you can edit yourself. Your latest kitchen makeover? Your favorite tile backsplash? Describe them the way YOU want to.

If your clientele includes visually impaired people, you definitely want to make sure the alt text it’s detailed and accurate to your brand. Even if your branding isn’t specific to the visually impaired, you want to be inclusive and make sure everyone can enjoy your work!

How to craft Instagram alt text

How do you write alt text that pops? Natalie notes that you want to keep it short and specific. Try not to exceed 100 characters. Avoid using the terms “image” or “photo.” Why? It’s a waste of time because Instagram already classifies it as an image or a video. 

So how do you edit it? If you want to change the alt text after a photo’s been posted, click on the ellipses (ahem, the three dots) and choose “edit”. In the bottom right corner of your photo you’ll see the words “edit alt text.” Click on that, and voila! You can add alt text to your Instagram photos. 

Get the full details on how to leverage Instagram alt text for your business by listening to the Monday Marketing Minisode now!

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