How to add images with the HTML tag img

The img tag allows you to easily add images to your website. It supports numerous formats and a variety of attributes can enhance the HTML tag in img even further.

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What is the img tag needed for?

The HTML tag “img” inserts images and graphics into websites. The img tag functions as a placeholder, whereby the stored src attribute links to the actual storage location of the graphic when a website is accessed. The image is then embedded into the website. An alt attribute is required in addition to the src attribute. This will store an alternative text in case the image cannot be displayed. JPEG, GIF, PNG, and several others are supported by the img tag in HTML.

What is the img tag syntax?

The img tag syntax is straightforward and only requires a few components. The simplest variant is:

<img src="redcar.png" alt="small red car at a traffic light">

To ensure the graphic is displayed correctly, it is a good idea to include the image’s height and width on the website when using the img tag. These settings can be found in HTML attributes width and height. The code should look like this:

<img src="redcar.png" width="500" height="200" alt="small red car at a traffic light">

The loading attribute is also recommended when using the HTML tag img. This ensures that the corresponding graphic is only loaded when users scroll to the corresponding position. Set the value of the loading attribute to lazy for this feature. This is how it should look in code:

<img src="redcar.png" width="500" height="200" alt="small red car at a traffic light" loading="lazy">

Which attributes can be used in the HTML tag img?

In addition to the width, height, and loading attributes, there are several other attributes which are supported by the img tag in HTML. These include all global, event, and other specific attributes. Below is an overview of the attributes which can be used with the img tag:






Mandatory; specifies an alternative text for the image.


anonymous, use-credentials

Specifies which third-party websites can access the corresponding image with a script.


auto, sync, async

Defines how and whether an image can be decoded.


Pixel or percent

Sets the image’s height on the website.


true, false

Controls image’s access to a server-side image map.


car, eager, lazy

Determines when an image should load.


no-referrer, no-referrer-when-downgrade, origin, origin-when-cross-origin, unsafe-url

States whether the image comes from an unsafe source.



Defines image sizes for different page layouts.



Mandatory; specifies the image’s URI address.


URL lists

Stores a list of images for different purposes, e.g. different devices and sizes.



Links the element to a specific image map.


Pixel or percent

Specifies the image’s width.

While the above attributes are commonly used in img tag, there are other attributes which have become outdated since HTML5 and HTML 5.1, such as align, border, hspace, longdesk, and vspace.


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