Web accessibility means that your website design ensures people with disabilities can use it. The goal is to remove technological barriers so anyone may interact within the information on a page or site- regardless if they have one specific disability like vision loss, hearing impairments etc.
An accessible website is one that works for people with disabilities such as those listed above. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) says this type of web design can be used by anyone to view the content on your site, even if they do not have any limitations in sight.
The W3C has documentation that tells you what your website should include to meet their standards. This includes browsers, accessibility features and more.
The documentation includes authorship tool accessibility guidelines (ATAG), web content standards (WCAG) and user agent specifications (UAAG).
ATAG and UAAG have been working together to create accessibility standards that protects the needs of people who are blind or visually impaired.
WCAG compliance is like a scale from 1-5, with A being the lowest and AAA being most accessible. As you go up through each level of WCAG standards your site becomes bigger for those who need it more; this means that websites can be created in such a way so they fit all needs without compromising anything at any point on their journey towards full accessibility.
How to check your website accessibility
You can outsource your website audit to a team of consultants who will analyze and make any adjustments necessary for you.
But if you’re looking for a more hands-off approach, there are plenty of options. You could manually go through your site and fix any issues that pop up on each page but this might take a lot of your time.
Some tools are available to help you. For example, plug your URL into an accessibility checker like WAVE and see what needs updating on one page at a time or use bulk checking for multiple pages together in order to make changes more efficiently.
The W3C website has everything you need to make your site more accessible.
Guidelines to make your website accessible for people with disabilities
The W3C provides a quick reference guide that can help you learn about the WCAG guidelines in more detail.
- Readable Text
The more easily you can read text, the better. Ideally your website’s content should have a 3:1 ratio of large headings to regular-sized body copy for easy reading purposes (or 4+ ratio).
Another way to increase readability and contrast on your website is by making sure that all of the text you include in a given space has similar styles. This will allow users with visual impairments or those who zoom too far into their computer screens have enough information available so they can still enjoy what’s being said without missing out on content.
- Optimize your images for better performance
Most people don’t realize this, but adding alt text to images is a great way for those with visual impairments or blindness. It helps them understand what’s going on in the picture and gives you more SEO power as well.
- Make videos more understandable with video transcripts
Captions are a great way to add context and personality when you’re uploading videos. If the auto-generated ones aren’t doing it for your brand, take some time in making custom captions that will really set them apart from other brands on social media.
Captions allow viewers who cannot see the image to understand what is happening in each scene, and they also provide transcripts for those with vision disabilities so that listeners can follow along without having sound or text interrupt their viewing experience.
Don’t overlook this simple but powerful tool – add captions during editing time on footage captured from any source (even if it’s just your phone) by using apps like Rev mobilephalt receiver.
An audio description is a separate track that describes what’s going on in your video between gaps of dialogue. So if you have two people talking about their recent shopping trip, and then the video cuts to some footage with someone trying on clothes-the MD would tell us how this person feels as they look into themselves from different angles in front glass mirrors or within clothing stores itself.
- Website usability is important
You can’t just rely on a mouse to navigate the internet. Your website needs key features that are easily accessible with both the mouse and the keyboard, so people don’t have trouble finding what they’re looking for and getting around your site.
- Easy site navigation
This tip is about making your website as easy and straightforward to navigate as possible. To do this, you should write page titles that have a clear purpose; use link anchor text so people know what content they’re going into when clicking on links from other websites or social media sites.
Use focus indicators so people know where they are on a page. Offer more than one way to access web pages, such as through menus or headlines that link directly back into the site’s table of contents. Make sure your navigation is consistent – this means don’t switch up what’s featured in bold letters at each top position when scrolling down; keep it simple.