Thanks for coming to, the world's #1 resource for all things InDesign!

Tip of the Week: Adding Alt Text to Images With Object Export Options

This InDesign tip on adding alt text to images with object export options was sent to Tip of the Week email subscribers on March 23, 2017.

InDesignSecrets Tip of the Week

Sign up now and every week you’ll get a new tip, keyboard shortcut, and roundups of new articles, plus exclusive deals sent right to your Inbox!

Just scroll down to the bottom of this page, enter your email address, and click Go! We’ll take care of the rest. Now, on with the tip!


In InDesign’s user interface there are panels (which can stay open while you work), and dialog boxes (which have to be closed before you can move on), and then there are some things that are neither panel nor dialog box, like Find/Change. You can keep it open, but you can’t dock it with other panels, and it doesn’t respond when you change your workspace. Another item in this in-between category is Object Export Options, which you can open from the Object menu.

InDesign object export options

Object Export Options are important when you’re exporting to EPUB, tagged PDF, or HTML. These options allow you to control the appearance of items, their tagging, and in the case of images, alt text. Adding alt text to images improves accessibility and the SEO value of your content, making it easier for folks to find on the web.

And while I’d rather be able to work with alt text in the Links panel, having it in a window that can remain open as you work (but sadly, not resize) is a decent alternative since it allows you to check and edit the alt text of many images quickly. Just by selecting each image one by one in the layout. Then select the source of the alt text from the image’s metadata, or choose Custom and type or paste in the text you want to use as alt text for the image.

InDesign image alt text from title

Mike Rankin

Mike Rankin

Editor in Chief of, InDesign Magazine, and Author of courses on InDesign and Illustrator. Husband. Dad. Dog walker.
Mike Rankin

Latest posts by Mike Rankin (see all)

  • - November 30, -0001
Related Articles

2 Comments on “Tip of the Week: Adding Alt Text to Images With Object Export Options

  1. I can’t figure out why none of the alt text I’ve assigned in ID is showing up in my exported PDF. All accessibility features (‘include all’, ‘create tagged PDF’ etc.) are on upon export.

    I’ve assigned the alt text using ‘Custom’ in the Object Export Options window.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *