If the image is purely decorative then mark it as decorative

  • For Office documents, you can specify decorative images by checking the “Mark as decorative” checkbox in the Alt Text pane. Note: although there will be no text in the textbox, it is essential that you check this checkbox as this communicates the image’s decorative nature to screen readers.

For all other instances, use alt text that accurately describes the content of the image.

Examples of good practice

The "Alt Text" pane with Alt Text describing the nature of the image
Figure 1 
The "Alt Text" pane with "Mark as decorative" checked so that its decorative nature can be accurately conveyed to screen readers.
Figure 2

An example of bad practice

The "Alt Text" pane with no Alt Text supplied and the "Mark as decorative" checkbox unchecked
Figure 3


WCAG 2.1

  • 1.1.1 Non-Text Content (A)

EN 301 549 v 2.1.2

  • Non-Text Content

Further reading