How to Properly Optimize for Non-Text Elements

Images online can prove challenging for visually impaired visitors, but with the advancements in technology we can use coding to solve this issue.

What Are Non-Text Elements?

Non-text elements include:

  • Infographics
  • Image maps
  • Graphical buttons
  • Captchas

There are several ways you can optimize around the images for accessibility.

Alt Text

Image alt text allows search bots to understand what the image is. If it’s a link, the alt text acts like anchor text, allowing Google to understand the context of the destination. However, you should never use alt text on decorative images such as patterns or landscapes on your website that are not relevant to your industry. Don’t use more than 125 characters because it is difficult for the JAWS screen reader to comprehend. Always, always, always write your content naturally.

Most importantly, always write your content naturally.

Image Captions

If you already have alt text than there is really no need for image captions.  If your user is utilizing an assistive technology, it’s important that you describe exactly what you’re captioning.


Don’t make your text an image if you want that content to be read by search engines. Text that is important to your website should not be in an image but if it must be, make sure you have incorporated alt text. To make your text look a certain way, style it with HTML or CSS.

Other ways to optimize non-text elements include video transcription, subtitles, and captioning.

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