Alternative text requirements

Brand imagery appears on Instacart in various formats—

Display ads 
Brand pages 

Screen reader users rely on alt text to understand the content of an ad and its imagery. Alt text is a string of text that’s—

  • User-friendly

  • Comprehensive 

  • As brief as possible while also including essential information 

Don’t use the filename or include extra characters (ex. code, excessive punctuation, etc) as the alt text.  

Writing alt text

Make sure to—

  • Describe succinctly non-textual, visual information present within the image, required for understanding the image’s meaning. This could include visual puns, wordplay, less obvious logos, or any other essential information otherwise conveyed only with imagery and not in-copy.

  • Use the image’s main message and purpose as the alt text 


  • Use incidental text 

  • Describe the relative positions of the image elements (ex. the text “Every kind of extraordinary” is on the left and ice cream is on the right)

  • Use detailed descriptions of the objects, models, or talent appearances, unless specifically relevant to the product

  • Include unnecessary instructions about basic web functions (ex. clicking this button adds the product to your cart)

Visual text descriptions

Alt text should help clarify the image. However, in some situations, an image contains essential visual text to understand the ad fully.

Informative text is the text that appears on an image. This text should be written verbatim and in its entirety in the image’s alt text. 

  • For example, Eureka Farms includes a photo of their product and text on the image that says “Every kind of extraordinary.” The alt text would be alt=” Eureka Farms – Every kind of extraordinary”

Incidental text is text within the image that may be legible, or partially legible, but isn’t essential to understanding the image’s meaning or purpose. Don’t include this in the alt text. 

  • For example, the text on the Eureka Farms packaging is legible in the image. Don’t include that in the image’s alternative text.