Text in images is invisible to the search engines. Text can be placed in the “alt” attribute in the tag, however alt text is largely ignored and/or devalued by most search engines. Using text as an image can have benefits as well as negatives. The one thing you should keep in mind is that if something is important enough to say, you probably want to say it in real HTML text.
Don’t Use Images for Optimized Copy: You definitely don’t want to put any optimized text within images. Forgo a bit of control on how your site appears so that you can create good content readable by the search engines. Placing good quality content in images can kill your optimization efforts.
Use for Images Non-Optimized Copy: Placing text in images can be used effectively to prevent “diluting” your optimized content with un-optimized text. Sometimes there are portions of a page that require rotating different content in and out such as temporary specials or temporary visitor information. Largely, adding or rotating this text will not hurt the optimization efforts, but you may find that this text, rather than something better, might appear in the “snippets” used in the search results. To prevent this from happening, it can be useful to place this temporary text within an image so the search engine spiders won’t index it with the page.
This post is part of a continuing series on the topic of:
Optimizing for Maximum Search Engine Performance
Sub-Topic: Optimizing Your Website Content.