Why You Should Welcome Website Accessibility

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    Why You Should Welcome Website Accessibility

Gone are the days when a superb web and graphic design was a simple job. Designers only had to worry about how to make the design look nice in IE or Netscape, and the task was done. And for so many graphic designers, the visual design was the only concern.  

This approach gave birth to a dangerous legacy, that can still be seen sometimes, where the content of the website like window dressing isn’t given primary importance, but things have drastically changed since then.

Your website user has multiple devices and browsers to access websites via mobile or website. This is challenging to develop a design that can consistently work on all types of browsers and devices. While website accessibility should be the most important factor, it is generally forgotten completely.

This approach just can’t be dangerous for your business, but also costly in the long run.

Number 1 – According to CDC, 1 in 5 American adults have the problem with hearing, and 1 in 10 adults have a problem with vision. The number of people who fall in the disabled category is more than 58 million. Will you be pleased to lose up to 20% of the potential market just because your designer can’t make an accessible website?

Number 2- Some people won’t be able to use your website if it doesn’t have accessible features. Do you think it would be fair? Me neither. Some users with disabilities may shrug off your website as inappropriate. Some may feel that by not including accessible features you are devaluing them.  

Number 3- Your accessible website can win the trust of your users. If your competitor doesn’t have an accessible website while you have accessible features on your website, guess which one the user will like? As mentioned above, 20% of the population have a disability, and they are more likely to buy things online than others. In the real world also accessibility affects shopping while the Internet provides a great way for each of us to get similar service with no social or physical barriers.  

Number 3- Accessibility isn’t just for blind folks. The concept of accessibility has led developers to believe that it is just about adding alt feature to images. Although,  adding alt text to images is considered as the first principle of web accessibility, but other disabilities also require designer’s attention. The meaning of true accessibility is about giving global access.

Number 4- The concept of accessibility is about letting users access every content on your website. There are people who can’t be specified as disabled like to take advantage of accessible features. For instance, there are people who don’t like to use their trackpads but like to use their keyboard to perform the same activity.

Number 5- Don’t use very small fonts. Some users aren’t aware that they can increase the size of the font with the help of hotkeys. You should always choose a reasonably large font.

Number 6- There should always be white space between lines and paragraphs. It isn’t just a feature for disabled users, but adequate white space will make your website look aesthetically pleasing.

Number 7- Try to navigate the web pages and its features with the help of the tab key; do not touch your mouse or trackpad. This is one of the best and simplest tests of accessibility.  

When you design and develop an accessible website, every user has equal access to functionality as well as information. These are some website accessibility tips that can help designers develop a user-friendly website.   

 

 

Shilpa Adhlakha
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