None of us is ignorant of the fact that online presence is the most critical factor in determining how successful your business gets. This is why almost every organization and brand has been working on improving its online presence.
And, the very first step for this is how well your website is designed and how easily accessible it is for the users. It is a significant part of modern web and app design today.
Simply creating an excellent website is never enough. Your website can have the most impeccable design and might be highly engaging but if it isn’t easily accessible to all types of users; there is not much that you can achieve.
Therefore, web accessibility is imperative for a number of reasons, many of which revolve around social, economic and legal aspects.
Most frequently; brands and businesses consider only the average typical user when they design a website. What can make you stand out and actually thrive is catering to the needs of the large chunks of the population that mostly miss out.
This specifically indicates the users that need accessibility accommodations. With digital accessibility, you can eliminate barriers and improve access for all.
Accessibility web design ensures the following:
- It is made with a set of guidelines that also accommodate users with disabilities like blindness, low vision, hearing problems, cognitive disabilities and so on.
- Since it is protected under the law, such websites ensure their content is easily accessible by all as per the accessibility standards.
Therefore, it is important to get equipped with strategies to boost the accessibility of your website. Below have been enlisted 5 best practices in Accessibility Web Design, employing which you can reach diverse populations.
1] Make your website understandable to all
Not every user who visits your website will be a reader. There is an array of different accessibility accommodations that are available to allow all kinds of people to understand your website. A common tool that finds applications on most websites is converting text to speech.
This allows individuals with disabilities like visual impairment to read your website. Also, including alt attributes to your website will make it easier for such users to interact with the images on your web page.
2] Keep an easy-to-read text
Users should be able to smoothly read the text that you incorporate on your website. To attain this, you need to ensure the contrast on your website facilitates smooth reading.
That is; your text color should not blend with the background color as this will cause issues deciphering and reading the word. Make use of a bigger font size so no one has to squint their eyes to read the material on your site.
If navigating through your website is difficult, users will lose interest very quickly. The struggle will likely be greater in the case of people requiring adaptations.
In this regard, you can seek the help of website accessibility consultants who can easily help you overcome such issues, making your website easy to navigate through. Here are some recommendations for easy navigation:
- Avoid piling up links on each page
- Make your links look different from the rest of the page content
- Highlight the search terms for easy identification
- Make it easier to switch to different pages of the website
4] Landmarks are important for an accessibility web design
Header, navigation, body, footer, and sidebar are landmarks that allow users to directly jump from one landmark to the next using certain dedicated keys on the keyboard. This will save them from the trouble of switching tabs to reach a particular landmark, saving them time and effort.
5] Make it easier for users to interact with your content
If you are including pop-ups on your website, give your users enough time to read the content on the popup. Give them the choice to decide the time they want to take by including checkboxes.
If you are including timeouts on forms, make sure the duration selected is accommodating. If the duration set is too low, you are creating an unwelcoming environment for your users.
So, it’s not just about nice color schemes or beautiful fonts, accessibility web design goes well beyond that and purports to create a platform which supports the needs of all kinds of users.
According to statistics, 71% of disabled customers will leave the website if they find it difficult to navigate and 82% of customers with access needs are ready to spend more money online if the websites were readily accessible.
So, skipping out on accessibility guidelines is equivalent to missing several business opportunities and potential customers in today’s digitalized world.
Time and again, it has been proven that a website is a highly effective form of publicizing and a good one can help you accomplish marketing strategies that will help you thrive.
Considering how easy it is to create a website, incorporate digital accessibility and make your website user-friendly for every single user. Remove all those barriers that create hindrances in the way of easy accessibility, navigation and understanding.