What is web accessibility, what does it mean?
When we talk about web accessibility- whether a website, app or digital product – we are looking to ensure they work for those with a temporary inability, or disability.
Web accessibility means that websites, tools, and technologies are designed and developed so that people with disabilities can use them. More specifically, people can perceive, understand, navigate, and interact with the Web and, or, contribute to the Web.
Why do I need web accessibility for my website?
For those with disabilities, they may have other ways of accessing your website, maybe they only use their keyboard without a mouse. Perhaps they use software which reads the website using audio, or a device which they blow through a tube.
Web accessibility also benefits people without disabilities, for example, someone using their mobile phone with one hand has a temporary inability. Using Google Maps to find a shop, voice search would be useful, to search for the name of a shop and receive audio back for the directions, without having to type – so you don’t bump into a pole!
Just like you would provide an access ramp outside of a shop, or hearing aids at the bank counter, we need to cater to those users online, too.
Why should I care about accessibility?
Approx 15-20% of users online have a disability – this could be 15-20% of your target market.
Currently, in the United States, it is a ruling under the American Disability Act (ADA) and website owners have and can be sued for being inaccessible. Beyonce and Dominoes being the most recent examples.
In the UK, we have a Disability Act and Human Rights, and currently all public sector websites – think HMRC, NHS – must meet requirements, by law.
Access to information and communications technologies, including the Web, is defined as a basic human right in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD).
Currently, it is under review is this will continue to trickle down to the private sector. So there is a good need to start now and ensure your website is accessible to your customers and users.
If a user is unable to complete their business or a given task, this may result in loss of reputation for your business, loss of revenue or possible litigation.
What is our Return On Investment (ROI) if we spend on Web Accessibility?
Web / digital accessibility can:
- Boost business by increasing your share of the market
- Enhance your brand reputation
- Drive innovation – you can get funding for innovation!
- Prevent possible litigation and
- Set you apart as a leader in your industry.
How can we help?
We can provide a FREE initial audit, of your homepage and provide a document which highlights key areas which could use improvement.
You can take this to your current web designer or agency to help improve your current website.
Check out our article, “7 quick tips to make your website accessible“!
We also provide a full audit, and the required updates needed to rectify what has been detected. This will include changing the code and/or content of a website.
To enquire about our web accessibility services, get in touch with us today by Email.