ADA-Compliance: How Accessibility Creates Websites for Everyone
Have you ever entered a site whose type was too small for you to stay? How about slow load times or confusing navigation that caused you to check out before you checked anything out? You’re not alone. Like a lame ex might tell you, “It’s not you. It’s me,” the same can be said about some websites. And in these cases, it’s not you…it’s poor, non-ADA-compliant web design.
What is ADA compliance, and why does it matter in web design?
ADA compliance may sound like a fancy way of saying “follow the rules,” but it’s so much more than that. Created in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) ensures that people with differing abilities are given equal opportunities in all aspects of society, including the world wide web.
So why does it matter? Not only is it the right thing to do, but accessible web design also opens up your website to a wider audience, increasing your reach and potential customer/client base. (Plus, with lawsuits related to ADA compliance on the rise, it’s better to be safe than sorry. )
Tips to Make Your Website More Accessible
In today’s digital age, having an accessible website is more important than ever. Aside from increased accessibility, ADA compliance improves your SEO ranking and user engagement. You can increase your site’s accessibility with these tips:
- Add alternative text to images: Providing alt text for images is an essential step to making your website accessible. This helps people with visual impairments understand what the image conveys.
- Ensure proper color contrast: Users with color blindness or other visual impairments may struggle to read text that doesn’t contrast enough with the background. Ensuring adequate color contrast will improve the readability of your website.
- Include transcripts and captions for multimedia content: Adding transcripts and captions for videos and audio content is one way of designing user-friendly websites for deaf or hard-of-hearing visitors.
- Provide keyboard navigation: Some users with disabilities may rely on a keyboard to navigate your website. Therefore, ensuring that all interactive elements on your site, such as buttons and links, can be accessed via keyboards is crucial.
- Use accessible design practices: The design of your website can impact its accessibility. Avoid using flashing images or animations that can trigger seizures in some users. Use clear and easy-to-read fonts, and keep the layout of your website clean and organized.
While improving your site’s accessibility might sound intimidating at first, it doesn’t have to be! There are a variety of tools available, both free and paid, that make testing your site a breeze. Lucky for all of us, HubSpot has compiled some of its favorites into one handy, comprehensive list.
Benefits of Having an ADA-Compliant Website
If you ask us, your trusted partner in web development, SEO and website hosting, creating an ADA complaint site is as much of a smart business move as it is a morally good thing to do. The following are only some of the benefits of creating an inclusive web experience. (And if you’ve really been reading this article, you might notice a few were mentioned above. That’s because of how important they are!)
- Expanded Audience: An ADA-compliant website ensures everyone, including people with disabilities, can access and navigate your website. By providing a positive user experience for everyone, you open up your business to a broader audience.
- Legal Protection: In some instances, ADA compliance is a legal requirement, and non-compliance may lead to expensive lawsuits and settlements. By ensuring your website is ADA-compliant, you’re helping protect your business from related legal liability.
- Improved SEO: Many features that make a website ADA-compliant, such as alternative text for images and closed captions for videos, also improve the website’s search engine optimization (SEO). By making your website more accessible, you also make it more visible to search engines.
- Better User Experience: An ADA-compliant website offers a better user experience for everyone, not just people with disabilities. Clear navigation, easy-to-read content, and well-designed forms benefit all users, increasing engagement and conversions.
- Positive Brand Image: By ensuring your website is ADA-compliant, you demonstrate your commitment to inclusivity and social responsibility. This can enhance your brand image, increase customer loyalty, and help attract new customers who prioritize businesses that prioritize accessibility.
TRIO Helps You Build A Website Fit For All
As the world and technology continue to evolve, it’s on all of us to make sure everyone can experience this growth. With so many ways to make an inclusive, positive web experience, you may be wondering where to start! Well, that’s why Team TRIO‘s creatively excellent crew is here! Contact us today for help creating a website ready to be enjoyed by all!
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