As the world and technology around us keep evolving, the need for the internet in our lives continues growing as well. We use the internet for almost anything, from ordering food from our favorite restaurants to purchasing flight tickets and learning a new language. That is why web accessibility is becoming a high priority in the years to come.
All websites should be available to all users, regardless of their disabilities, limitations, internet speed, or any other factor that might affect how they access a particular website. There is no valid reason for someone to be unable to access a website, consume a certain piece of information, or get entertained as others do.
All users deserve access to the same websites and the same information, and website owners are starting to be held accountable if their website is not inclusive. With a few cases where businesses were fined because their users were not able to access a piece of information due to disability or any type of limitation, web accessibility is something that everyone is increasingly focusing on.
To help you check how accessible your website is, we have decided to gather all relevant information in this article.
What is Web Accessibility?
Website accessibility refers to all recommendations web platforms need to implement to ensure users have alternative ways to consume information published on the website. This allows users to use their services or do anything else this website is designed to. If any user can navigate the website to purchase, inform, or perform any other action, this means that the website is accessible to everyone.
To ensure your website is completely inclusive, reach out to your UX/UI design team to review the entire website and test it for accessibility. Many factors impact your web accessibility, from the font you are using to the alt text you add to your multimedia. As most people without web design experience will not have an idea where to start, reaching out to a professional is a good idea.
Web Accessibility Checklist
As said, there are many things you’ll need to keep in mind to have an inclusive website. Because many website owners either don’t have a web designer on their team or the money to outsource one, this 508 compliance checklist for websites will help you do most of it on your own.
Start with your website structure. Does your page title indicate what the page is about? Are you using simple language throughout your website and separating your content with headings? Do all your pages have the same structure? Do you add tables and lists and provide an alternative solution if someone can’t read them or they don’t load on the website due to a poor internet connection?
Review all the links you’ve added. Are these links guiding to relevant sources? Can all users easily click on them, even if they are using their keyboard to navigate your website? Is your entire website organized in a way that everyone can easily find what they need?
Go back to your multimedia library. Do all your images and videos have image alt text to ensure people with visual impairment can comprehend what is presented in the image or video? Do you use proper contrast and colors? Do your videos and audios have subtitles?
All these factors will help you improve the accessibility of your website. Even doing small steps will significantly improve how others use and navigate your web pages, not to mention that it improves your SEO results. Websites that are accessible will rank higher on Google and other search engines than those that are not.
There is no need to wait for countries to start obligating website owners to make their websites more accessible. You should start focusing on accessible web development right away as there are too many benefits from it. Just think about the number of website visitors you are losing each month because they are unable to access your website.
If you’re uncertain where to start and all of this seems too overwhelming to you, reach out to a web design and development company of your choice and ask them for help. Many web design and development companies are already helping businesses and individuals to convert their websites into accessible ones.
It is only a matter of time until all websites become accessible. To avoid being behind your competitors, show your customers you care about all of them and will do everything you can for them to enjoy your brand and your products.