Related terms


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Alternate text (Alt)

HTML code for describing an image, which is displayed when the user has blocked image downloads, and is also the text read by adaptive devices for individuals with visual impairments to help them understand the message (accessibility).

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Should I include alternative text in my email campaign images?

Including alternative text in your email campaign images is something you should always do. Considering not doing so should not be an option. As we've already mentioned, thanks to alternative text, people with visual impairments can understand what the attached photos contain, making it one of the pillars that ensure the accessibility of the campaigns we send.

Additionally, there's the issue of image downloads. More and more users default to having image downloads disabled on their devices. They only download images when they find the campaign content interesting and when viewing the images will add value. If we decide not to include any type of alternative text in our images, these subscribers will see a broken link and nothing more.

Alternative text, therefore, should provide context about the image that is not visible. It can also encourage subscribers to enable image downloads for that campaign if they see that the alternative text content is of interest to them.

Not including alternative text will also mean that if someone decides not to download the images, they may not understand the entirety of the campaign, especially if images play a significant role in it.

The most important thing, therefore, is to conduct tests. Sending test emails to ourselves and colleagues will allow us to see how our campaigns are displayed on various devices with image downloads enabled and disabled. Only in this way can we ensure that all our subscribers can view them properly. Remember that if you use Acrelia, with our campaign editor, you can preview the campaigns with image downloads enabled and disabled.

How should campaign images be?

The fact that some of our subscribers do not have image downloads enabled does not mean we should not include images in our campaigns. Including pictures in our emails adds dynamism and makes them more visually appealing.

The type of images we use will depend on the purpose of the email. Depending on what we are communicating, images may have more or less significance. We may limit them to the header and the company logo or choose to include more images to make buttons more visually appealing, accompany the content we share, illustrate the steps to follow in a transactional email, and more. In any case, images should always complement the text, and the message should be understandable without them.

However, we should always keep in mind not to overuse images. If we include too many, users who do not have image downloads enabled may lose interest in our campaign entirely, even if alternative text is included. Furthermore, excessive use of images can significantly increase the message's file size and impact the user experience, causing it to load too slowly.

It's also essential to, in addition to using images moderately, aim for a good balance between images and text at the beginning of our campaign. This is the first thing subscribers will see when they open the email, and therefore, it's crucial that even if there are some broken images, they can read content that is of interest and encourages them to continue reading our email.