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Sunday, September 24, 2023

What It Is & Find out how to Use It Correctly in 2023

An HTML picture tag shows a picture on a webpage. It’s a self-closing tag (that means it’s structured in a manner so you do not have so as to add a separate closing tag) that comprises the picture supply and different attributes.

Right here’s an instance of a picture html tag:

<img src="https://instance.com/cat.jpg" alt="Furry white cat sitting on a wall">

Now, let’s go over the HTML tag for photos (additionally known as an <img> tag) intimately.

Find out how to Use the HTML Picture Tag

You’ll be able to insert the <img> tag in your HTML code wherever you need to show a picture. Like inside the hero part on a product web page.

And it at all times consists of two required attributes: 

  • src: Signifies the trail of the picture that’s proven
  • alt: Signifies different (alt) textual content that’s displayed if the picture fails to load and for people utilizing display screen readers or different text-to-speech instruments

The picture isn’t straight embedded into the web page however is loaded from the supply path within the tag. 

an example of an image loaded from the source path in the tag (shown in the screenshot below)

And the picture could be sourced from wherever—i.e., on the identical server (known as a relative path) or a special one (known as an absolute path).

You may as well nest the picture tag inside different container tags—i.e., HTML tags with each opening and shutting tags.

Right here’s an instance of a picture tag nested inside an anchor tag that hyperlinks to a different web site:

<a href="https://instance.com"><img src="https://instance.com/cat.jpg" alt="furry white cat sitting on a wall"></a>

It creates a clickable picture hyperlink.

Sorts of HTML Picture Attributes

HTML picture attributes are used to specify details about the picture. You need to use them to manage how the pictures are displayed, loaded, and extra.

Let’s check out every of those attributes one after the other.

The Src Attribute

That is crucial attribute. It specifies the trail to the picture.

Browsers can’t discover and show the picture with out its supply path.

And the supply could be both an absolute or a relative URL.

The Alt Attribute

This attribute is used to incorporate the choice textual content for the picture—a text-based rationalization of the picture. 

Browsers show this textual content when the picture fails to load or can’t be discovered. Like when the person has a sluggish web connection.

And it appears like this on the webpage:

an example of an alt text for an image which failed to load

It additionally makes the picture accessible to visually impaired readers and those that want to hearken to content material somewhat than learn it. As a result of display screen readers and different text-to-speech instruments use alt textual content to explain the picture.

It’s additionally an essential attribute from an search engine marketing perspective. 


As a result of alt textual content may also help engines like google like Google perceive your content material higher, which might result in greater rankings. And it’s particularly useful for serving to your photos seem in picture outcomes. Particularly if you happen to embody related key phrases.

The Title Attribute

This attribute is used to set the picture’s title. To offer further context in regards to the picture.

The title attribute is displayed as a tooltip—a component that shows details about the picture while you hover over it together with your mouse cursor.

That is what a tooltip appears like:

an example of title attribute displayed as a tooltip

The Longdesc Attribute

This attribute is used to hyperlink to a webpage with an in depth description of the picture. Which could be useful for complicated photos that may’t be absolutely defined with alt textual content.

It may be the tackle of one other webpage or a component inside the similar web page.

But it surely’s hardly ever used. As a result of most browsers don’t assist it.

The Crossorigin Attribute

The crossorigin attribute is used when loading a picture from one other area.

It tells the browser to make one thing known as a cross-origin useful resource sharing (CORS) request. The CORS safety mechanism allows net servers to manage whether or not different domains can entry their assets. And protects delicate info from being accessed by means of unauthorized requests.

The crossorigin attribute can have the next values:

  • nameless: Sends a request with out credentials. It’s the identical as an empty crossorigin attribute. Any such request is used to entry publicly accessible assets.
  • use-credentials: Sends a request with credentials for authentication—e.g., cookies, certificates, and so on. Any such request is used to entry personal assets.

The Ismap Attribute

The ismap attribute represents a picture map (a picture with clickable areas) saved on the server. It’s solely used for clickable photos (i.e., <img> tags contained in the <a> tags).

It’s a boolean attribute—that means it’s “true” when current and “false” when not. And it doesn’t include any values.

For instance:

<a href="https://instance.com/"><img src="https://instance.com/cat.jpg" alt="Furry white cat sitting on a wall" ismap></a>

When a person clicks the picture, the situation of the clicking can also be despatched with the request. It provides the cursor coordinates on the finish of the URL.

Within the above instance, clicking the picture at (x=33, y=45) coordinates will open the next URL:


This system or script on the server processes the request and performs a particular motion. Or takes the person to a particular web page.

It’s hardly ever used as of late. As a result of it’s not useful for customers with display screen readers. And utilizing JS/CSS as a substitute affords extra environment friendly performance, with out relying on the server for processing.

The Usemap Attribute

The usemap attribute represents a picture with clickable areas (known as a picture map).

Every space hyperlinks to a particular tackle–i.e., a webpage or useful resource.

Details about the areas of those areas and addresses is saved in a <map> tag. The worth of the usemap attribute factors to the identify of the related map.

Subsequently, the usemap attribute creates picture maps which are processed inside browsers (known as client-side picture maps.)

Right here’s an instance utilizing the usemap attribute:

<img src="https://instance.com/cat.jpg" alt="Furry white cat sitting on a wall" usemap="#cat">
<map identify="cat">
<space form="rect" coords="0,0,200,400" href="left_part.html" alt="Left Half">
<space form="rect" coords="200,0,400,400" href="right_part.html" alt="Proper Half">

The usemap tag can’t be used for clickable photos.

The Loading Attribute

This specifies how browsers ought to load the picture.

That’s decided by which of those values the attribute comprises:

  • keen: The picture is loaded instantly (that is the default worth)
  • lazy: The picture isn’t loaded till it is required (i.e., when the person reaches that a part of the web page)

Picture lazy loading can enhance the load time. It will possibly enhance the web page efficiency rating in Google’s PageSpeed Insights—a instrument that measures web page efficiency throughout desktop and cell gadgets. 

an infographic showing Google PageSpeed insights score

Web page pace is a confirmed Google rating issue. So, utilizing lazy loading for photos could be a good observe to enhance your web site’s search engine marketing.

The Referrerpolicy Attribute

This defines what referrer info to ship together with the picture request.

What’s a referrer?

A referrer is the web page the request is shipped from. Which means the web page the place the picture goes to be embedded.

This attribute can include any of those values:

  • no-referrer: No referrer info is shipped with the request
  • no-referrer-when-downgrade: No referrer info is shipped with requests from HTTPS to HTTP
  • same-origin: The entire URL is shipped with same-origin requests. No referrer info is shipped for cross-origin requests.
  • origin: The origin (scheme, host, and port) is shipped
  • strict-origin: The origin (scheme, host, and port) is shipped with HTTPS to HTTPS and HTTP to any origin requests. No referrer info is shipped with HTTPS to HTTP requests.
  • origin-when-cross-origin: The origin (scheme, host, and path) is shipped with cross-origin requests. The entire URL, together with the trail, is shipped with same-origin requests.
  • strict-origin-when-cross-origin: It’s the identical because the “origin-when-cross-origin,” however no referrer info is shipped with HTTPS to HTTP requests. That is the default worth.
  • unsafe-url: Theorigin, path, and question string are despatched. (It’s not beneficial because it’s unsafe to share the referrer’s full info.)

The Srcset Attribute

This attribute is used for displaying responsive photos.

It comprises hyperlinks to the identical picture in a number of sizes. And every picture’s dimension is specified both by width or density.

This helps the browser select probably the most acceptable picture from the set based on the display screen dimension and backbone.

The Sizes Attribute

This attribute is used together with the srcset attribute. 

It tells the browser which picture dimension to make use of beneath completely different circumstances.

The Fashion Attribute

This attribute is used to use inline model to the picture tag. And can override some other international model utilized to the picture.

The model attribute can management the looks of the picture tag. It will possibly include components comparable to picture border, shadow, and alignment.

The Peak Attribute

This attribute is used to specify the peak of a picture in pixels. Like within the picture beneath. 

an example of a height attribute

Not specifying the peak will load the picture in its authentic top. Which could now work together with your web page’s format.

The Width Attribute

This attribute is used to specify the width of a picture in pixels. 

And a picture and not using a width attribute will seem in its authentic width.

Tip: It’s beneficial that you simply outline each the peak and width for photos. To stop the format from altering after the picture has loaded.

Some outdated HTML picture attributes have been changed in HTML5. 

Browsers could assist these attributes for compatibility, however it’s not beneficial to make use of them. They’re deprecated (that means not beneficial).

Right here’s the record of deprecated attributes:

  • align
  • border
  • hspace
  • longdesc
  • identify
  • vspace

Browsers That Assist the HTML Picture Tag

The HTML <img> tag is a widely-accepted factor. 

It’s supported by all the favored web browsers, together with:

  • Chrome
  • Safari
  • Edge
  • Firefox
  • Opera

Most cell browsers additionally assist the picture tag.

Right here’s the record of the favored picture codecs supported by Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari, and Opera:

  • .apng
  • .bmp
  • .gif
  • .jpeg
  • .jpg
  • .png
  • .webp
  • .svg

Greatest Practices for Making certain Accessibility

Photos make webpages visually interesting to readers.

However not everybody can see them effectively or in any respect. So, it’s additionally essential to make them accessible to visually impaired individuals. 

Keep in mind, display screen readers use photos’ different textual content to explain them. Which means it is a good observe to write down descriptive alt textual content for all non-decorative photos. 

However what are these? 

Non-decorative photos are the a part of the web page’s major content material. And include info it is advisable perceive the web page.

However, ornamental picture components don’t include any info. They improve the webpage visually. So, maintain the choice textual content clean (alt=“”) for these components so display screen readers can skip them.

Right here’s a very good instance of descriptive alt textual content: “Furry white cat sitting in entrance of a wall” is best than “Picture of cat.”

As a result of the previous textual content is extra informative. It supplies context in regards to the picture for individuals utilizing display screen readers.

Listed here are some greatest practices to make photos extra accessible:

  • Use contextual and descriptive alt textual content
  • Don’t add different textual content for ornamental photos just like the one beneath
an example of a decorative image on "Semrush Features" page
  • For clickable photos, describe the goal hyperlinks within the different texts of the pictures
  • Keep away from embedding essential textual content that doesn’t seem wherever else on the web page inside photos. If the picture comprises textual content, attempt to describe it within the different textual content.
  • Write the choice textual content in the identical language as the remainder of the web page’s content material

If the choice textual content is left clean, some display screen readers could default to the picture’s file identify. So, it’s essential to make use of descriptive file names as effectively.

For instance, the file identify “furry-cat.png” is best than “image-202305.png.”

Google additionally typically makes use of file names to grasp the pictures. Meaning a contextual picture file identify will also be useful for picture search engine marketing.

HTML Picture Tag Examples

Now, let’s go over some particular examples utilizing the picture tag in HTML:

Picture with Particular Dimensions

You need to use the peak and width attributes to specify a picture’s dimensions. 

Right here’s an instance of a picture that’s 150×150 pixels:

<img src="https://instance.com/cat.jpg" alt="Furry white cat sitting on a wall" top="150" width="150">

Picture with Inline Fashion

You’ll be able to apply inline model to the picture by utilizing the model factor. 

Right here’s an instance of including a black border to a picture utilizing inline model:

<img src="https://instance.com/cat.jpg" alt="Furry white cat sitting on a wall" model="border:3px strong black">

Animated Picture

The <img> tag in HTML can show animated photos like GIFs. 

For instance, the beneath tag shows a GIF:

<img src="https://instance.com/rabbit.gif" alt="Rabbit leaping throughout the grass">

Picture as a Button

To make use of a picture as a button, nest the <img> tag contained in the <button> tag.

Like this:

<button sort="submit"><img src="https://instance.com/submit.jpg" alt="Submit the kind"></button>

Lazy Loading Picture

You’ll be able to allow lazy loading for a picture by setting its loading attribute to “lazy.” 

For instance:

<img src="https://instance.com/rabbit.gif" alt="Rabbit leaping throughout the grass" loading="lazy">

HTML picture tags allow you to embed photos that make your pages seem visually wealthy. And picture attributes can provide a greater, extra accessible person expertise. And enhance your rankings in engines like google.

However it is advisable guarantee they’re used appropriately.

Invalid HTML tags and attributes could cause technical points. They’ll negatively have an effect on the person expertise and diminish your search engine rankings. Subsequently, it’s best to often audit your web site to trace such points.

You’ll be able to verify for all these points utilizing Website Audit

Open the instrument and observe our configuration directions. Then, click on “Begin Website Audit.”

"Site Audit Settings" page

Click on the “Points” tab. Then, enter “photos” into the search bar to search out points like lacking alt attributes.

how to find missing alt attributes in Site Audit "Issues” tab

And you could find different technical points together with your web site. Probably the most pressing ones are known as “Errors.”

You may as well set a web site audit schedule by clicking the gear icon and scrolling right down to “Website Audit settings.”

site audit schedule set to "Schedule: Weekly, Every Tuesday" in “Site Audit settings”

Strive Website Audit now at no cost.

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