If I chose the option to “Set default image alt text directly in the asset manager”, I assume that this takes the image file name and applies it as an alt tag description, therefore giving a CMS collaborator some form of ability to oversee SEO on their images. However when I pick this option for front facing images and check the new audit tool, the audit flags a problem with that image missing its alt tag!!
Is there an issue here or am I missing something?
Based on this documentation the setting means that the image collects the alt text set in the asset manager. So you still have to add it manually there.
Alt texts should describe the contents of the image, whenever the image itself isn’t displayed. This is used in SEO and by Screen readers. So just using the filename isn’t really solving the issue. It will remove the audit but it will not improve much else.
Site note: I also noticed that you use a lot of background images instead of images. Note that this is bad for SEO and performance. Regular images are scaled down to multiple versions automatically and only the appropriate version is loaded, based on the visitors screen size, this is called srcset. By using background images you force every visitor to load the original image. This will slow down the site significantly, background images also don’t have alt texts.
So basically going on this, then it’s effectively the same as the custom option in that it doesn’t pull in info automatically it has to be manually entered just like the custom option in order to pass the audit?
And the CMS user still has no ability to enter in their own alt tag info here. This is not great functionality from Webflow.
CMS items are different. There you connect the alt text to a specific field on the CMS item. So if you want to be able to change the alt text from the CMS you can add a specific field for this. It would be nice if this was an option on the image field though. And if there was a way to overwrite it.
The difference in setting the alt in the Asset manager and the Designer (as a custom one) is that the one in the Asset manager is tied to the image, not the instance of the image. So whenever that image is used in the designer its alt text will be added automatically. If you instead add a custom alt text and then add that image again you also have to add this custom alt text again. So it’s much better to add the alt in the Asset manager. The custom is mainly used to overwrite the alt to better fit a specific need. So in general it should be used together with the Asset manager alt text, not instead of.
The audit itself only checks if an image has an alt text, it does not review the value. So even if the image name was added automatically it would be a very bad alt text. It would pass the Audit but it would not help your end result very much. If you intend to optimize the SEO of the site then you should do the correct thing and add proper alt texts manually.
Okay thanks for explaining that tome. So ideally I should be going through each image that’s in the assets panel and their respective updating alt/image tags from there and then for each free standing images use the Set default image alt text directly in the asset manager option. The issue I have with this is the site is live and handed over to the client who’s now asking questions about updating asset tags! She’s an editor and doesn’t have access to the designer and so cannot make the necessary alt tag changes. This is a real downside here from a Webflow CMS perspective.