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  1. #1
    Sinclair Oil Lurker Jones's Avatar
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    alt text for text and search engines
    I am developing a new site and I am using the feature with frontpage to add "titles" to the text, i.e. a title="your favorite products at affordable prices" href=......

    I have heard that it does not hurt, and is recommended, to add alt text to images. Is that true for text as well? or does it really matter?
    Last edited by Lurker Jones; September 5th, 2005 at 10:32 PM. Reason: ubb correction
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  2. #2
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    The title attribute isn't the same as the alt attribute for images. Put into the image alt text the words or phrase that describe the image as you would want a visually impaired person using a screen reader to have in order to understand what the image depicts. What you described is text that doesn't explain what the image is.

    Generally what's used in alt text, if the image represents the products on the page, would be an applicable descriptive keyword phrase. If you're selling blue shoes on the page, then "ladies blue shoes" as alt text for a photo of the shoes is accurate. "Cheapest prices on shoes on the internet" doesn't tell the search engine or the user anything about the image or the page or the photo, so it's basically a waste of space.

  3. #3
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    Some good advice for image alt text.
    But, he was mainly asking about the title tag for regular text links.
    "I am developing a new site and I am using the feature with frontpage to add "titles" to the text,"~Lurker Jones

    Any suggestions for that?
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  4. #4
    Sinclair Oil Lurker Jones's Avatar
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    How does placing a "title" with text links have any seo benefit? I understand that alt text for images has a seo benefit. This, btw, is not a javascript function: the code would look like this - {a title="click here for coupons" href=http://yoursitedotcom/couponsDOThtml}click here{/a} to go to the coupon page} - with the appropriate tags, of course.
    Last edited by Lurker Jones; September 6th, 2005 at 01:52 AM. Reason: furthering the cause
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  5. #5
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    It does kind of sound redundant to use "alt tags" on text links, but who knows if it will make a difference. It also could be viewed as spam if the alt text and the text link say the same thing.

  6. #6
    Sinclair Oil Lurker Jones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mhutch
    It does kind of sound redundant to use "alt tags" on text links, but who knows if it will make a difference. It also could be viewed as spam if the alt text and the text link say the same thing.
    Yeah, I thought about that. However, I am trying something out: the text link might actually say "coupon codes", but the title (alt text) would say, for example, "discounted items from online stores" - I am trying to mix it up somewhat but maintain relevancy with both forms of text.
    [B][COLOR=Red]I look forward to Google's demise[/COLOR][/B]
    Look who is suing Google - [URL=http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=google+gets+sued]click here[/URL] and [URL=http://search.msn.com/results.aspx?q=google+gets+sued&FORM=MSNH&srch_type=0]here[/URL] and [URL=http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=google+gets+sued&fr=FP-tab-web-t&toggle=1&cop=&ei=UTF-8]here[/URL]

  7. #7
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    Alt is for images not not for text links but when the title attribute is used with a text link it will show when mousing over and you'd see something like this (ignore the asterisks, trying to show exact code without it breaking):

    <*a href="ht*tp://www.abestweb.com"* title="affiliate marketing forums">ABestWeb</a*>

    Then, in cases where the anchor text of text link says something like "Click Here" it's better for usability, for those who need it, to add title="whatever the link is pointing to" because it's clearer and more descriptive.

    In the case of a "hand examination" of a site by an engine that would pass, but there's little or no evidence that it helps with rankings. Some say it does in cases of really oddball, unique words but most say that it isn't worth anything.

    The title attribute can also be used with H1, H2, H3, etc. so it isn't a bad idea to use if the headings aren't descriptive.

  8. #8
    Sinclair Oil Lurker Jones's Avatar
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    not sure if we are talking about the same thing
    The title attribute can also be used with H1, H2, H3, etc. so it isn't a bad idea to use if the headings aren't descriptive
    I am not talking about the page title, I am talking about text that appears when you place the cursor over the text and text appears like it would for an image. This is not a javascript, but it is a code and feature that comes with frontpage for IE 5.5 or greater, I think. The "title" for text would be the same as "alt" for an image.
    [B][COLOR=Red]I look forward to Google's demise[/COLOR][/B]
    Look who is suing Google - [URL=http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=google+gets+sued]click here[/URL] and [URL=http://search.msn.com/results.aspx?q=google+gets+sued&FORM=MSNH&srch_type=0]here[/URL] and [URL=http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=google+gets+sued&fr=FP-tab-web-t&toggle=1&cop=&ei=UTF-8]here[/URL]

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador buy_online's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lurker Jones
    I am not talking about the page title, I am talking about text that appears when you place the cursor over the text and text appears like it would for an image. This is not a javascript, but it is a code and feature that comes with frontpage for IE 5.5 or greater, I think. The "title" for text would be the same as "alt" for an image.
    Yup, it's the "Title" tag for sure. And if you're a believer in "alt" tags you ought to be a believer in "title" tags too. Works for me.

    I would really wonder who thinks they're a waste of time? And are those the same folks that think meta tags and privacy/about pages are a waste of time too?

    Fred

  10. #10
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    I am not talking about the page title, I am talking about text that appears when you place the cursor over the text and text appears like it would for an image.
    That's what I'm talking about - not the page title that goes in the head section and shows in the browser window, which is the title "element"

    <title>Page Title</title>

    http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/stru...l.html#h-7.4.2

    But the title "attribute" that's used for links and headers on pages - and also <th> and others.

    http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/stru...l.html#h-7.4.3

    <h2 title="what this section is">Section heading goes here</h2>

    If an image doesn't have an alt attribute, but does have a title attribute, what's in the title attribute will show when the image is moused over.

    Words that are in an "alt" attribute are parsed and will show up in the Google text-only cache. Words that are in a "title" attribute won't, so for images the title attribute doesn't replace the alt attribure..

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