How to Add Alt Text to a Picture in Google Slides

Adding alt text to images in your Google Slides presentations is an important accessibility feature that allows visually impaired users with screen readers to understand the content and context of images. It also helps improve SEO by providing more textual context to search engines.

Follow this simple guide to learn how to easily add alt text to any image in Google Slides.

Why Add Alt Text?

Here are some key reasons why you should add alt text:

  • Improves accessibility – Screen reader users will be able to understand images instead of just hearing “image”
  • Enhances SEO – More text for search engines to analyze
  • Conveys meaning if image fails to load – Alt text displays if there’s an issue loading the image

How to Add Alt Text in Google Slides

Adding alt text is easy and only takes a few seconds per image. Here are the step-by-step instructions:

Select the Image

  • Open your presentation in Google Slides and select the image you want to add alt text to.
  • The image should have a border around it when selected.

Open the Alt Text Editor

  • Right click on the image and select Alt text from the menu.
  • Alternatively, use the Ctrl+Alt+Y keyboard shortcut on PC or ⌘+Option+Y on Mac.

Enter Alt Text

  • In the alt text editor, there are two fields – Title and Description.
  • The title should be short, usually 1-2 words.
  • The description provides more detail on the image content/context. Write 1-2 sentences.
  • Example:
  • Title: Woman smiling
  • Description: Headshot of Jane Smith, Chief Financial Officer, smiling directly at the camera.
  • Click OK or press Enter to save the alt text.

Repeat for All Images

  • Go through your presentation and add alt text for every non-decorative image.

And that’s it! Now visually impaired users with screen readers will be able to fully understand the images in your Google Slides presentations.

Tips for Writing Good Alt Text

Follow these tips when writing alt text:

  • Be concise yet descriptive.
  • Avoid phrases like “image of” or “graphic of”. Screen readers announce it’s an image.
  • Don’t keyword stuff. Focus on an accurate description.
  • Convey emotion or concepts if relevant, don’t just state the obvious.
  • Use present tense, active voice.
  • Don’t repeat caption text. Alt text complements captions.

Decorative Images

If an image is purely decorative:

  • Leave the alt text blank.
  • Screen readers will skip over decorative images without descriptions.

Testing Alt Text

To test if your alt text makes sense to a visually impaired user:

  • Use the Ctrl+F5 shortcut to toggle image visibility.
  • Images will disappear, only alt text remains visible.
  • Read through the content only reading the alt text.
  • Adjust descriptions if the context doesn’t make sense.

Why Add Alt Text to Images?

There are two main reasons why adding alternative text to images is important:

  1. Accessibility: Alt text allows visually impaired users using screen readers to understand what is in the image through a text description. Without alt text, they would just hear “image” and miss context.
  2. SEO: Alt text allows search engines to better understand the content within images, allowing your presentation to rank better in image search results.

So take a few minutes to add helpful alt text to the images in your next Google Slides presentation!