Website accessibility

Creating an accessible website not pnly opens your services to millions of potential customers with special needs, it is also a legal compliance issue. Beyond simply being the right thing to do, accessibility makes good business sense. Unfortunately, most websites still pose challenges for people with impaired vision, hearing loss, limited mobility, and other special needs. Sometimes referred to as “Section 508” or “WCAG” (pronounced wuh-cag) compliance, every website should be accessible to anyone seeking to access it.

  • Conduct a website audit
  • Optimize for screen readers

  • Improve readability

  • Add captions

  • Keep updating

Conduct a website audit

Start by running an automated checker like WAVE or axe® on your site to catch common issues, such as missing alt text, poor color contrast, or faulty heading structures. Manually assess ease of use, by listening to screen readers, and testing with a keyboard only. Every link, menu item, button, shopping cart, and other features should be reachable by using only your keyboard, primarily the tab key.

Turn on your screen reader! Often overlooked, many users cannot access websites without it.

Optimize for screen readers

Blind and sight-impaired users rely on screen readers to interpret page content and navigation. Make sure your site architecture is clean, headings are hierarchical, and alt text thoroughly describes images. Also confirm all interface elements are accessible via keyboard for those unable to use a mouse.

Improve readability

Boost text legibility with ample white space, left-aligned paragraphs, sans serif fonts and a minimum 16px base font size. Don’t rely solely on color cues. Many people are color-blind. Also ensure color contrast ratios meet or exceed WCAG standards.

Add captions

Transcribe audio content with captions and provide transcripts for videos. This helps deaf and hard-of-hearing visitors follow along while also benefiting search visibility, possibly boosting your SEO scores.

Keep updating

Accessibility requires ongoing vigilance as you add new pages or update existing ones. Continuously run automated tests to catch any new issues cropping up over time. There are several WordPress plugins available to help get you started.

With a few thoughtful design tweaks and content enhancements, you can make your website usable and enjoyable for all. Eliminating accessibility barriers expands your reach, while also being the right thing to do. Everyone benefits from inclusive online experiences.