If you make your website unwelcoming, only a few people will drop by to visit.
Building an accessible website helps your company to communicate effortlessly with the rest of the globe. It is worth noting that empathy and accessibility criteria are critical for developing a higher-quality product.
One of the most tangible ways businesses can provide friendly and pleasant consumer experiences is to make their websites accessible. Prioritizing online accessibility also aids companies in expanding their market reach. According to business data, organizations with inaccessible websites lose $6.9 billion each year compared to competitors with accessible websites.
Applying accessible web design principles will get you off to a good start. However, it is critical to remember that accessibility doesn't only imply having your website appear excellent. Design standards go much beyond appealing color palettes and gorgeous typefaces. It is about ensuring that your site is user-friendly so visitors can easily engage with the information and that it generally meets all your users' demands.
This article will provide you with all the information you need to make your website user-friendly. Let's get this party started.
Core principles of web accessibility
Web accessibility, in its most basic form, refers to building websites and apps accessible to all users, including those with special needs, impairments, and disabilities.
Web accessibility is a crucial element to consider when creating apps, mainly those accessible to the public since it guarantees that all users can access them.
Web accessibility rests on a 'four-legged stool.' Or, more precisely, four principles that comprise what is known as POUR. The following are the principles:
- Perceivable: Perceivability refers to the user's ability to recognize material and interact with items through their senses. For many users, this entails visualizing a system. Others perceive permeability through sound or touch. Users must be able to perceive information and user interface components. It involves offering alternatives to material that is not visible to all users, such as speech transcripts or captions.
- Operable: Operational websites are utilized without interfering with the user. All visitors will use the site's functionality, from browsing a page to picking a link from a menu to playing and stopping video and music. In general, the most operable web pages are clear and direct. They have removed any unnecessary functionality that will hamper users with impairments and limits.
- Understandable: Ensure that your site or application's content and functionality are both understandable. The text should be legible, navigation should be predictable, and users should be able to prevent and remedy mistakes using input help. Similarly, navigation should be continuous and consistent - the primary navigation should always remain the same on any page and in the same place.
- Robust: Users often choose their technology combination. Therefore, you should build a website that works well across several platforms and browsers. Adhering to development standards and practices is the best method to ensure website resilience. Use as few lines of code as feasible. It improves the website's usability, accessibility, and robustness across all platforms.
Why web accessibility is essential
Your company's website is vital for connecting with customers and generating revenue. However, you must ensure that online accessibility is a top focus.
It is critical for online services to foster an inclusive atmosphere for everybody. Accessible websites allow users to make autonomous decisions and provide equitable access to education, work, and leisure, among other things.
The following are some of the reasons why you should prioritize your website's accessibility:
1. Strengthens brand and website performance
One of the several advantages of making your website accessible to everyone is that it boosts your brand. Your website communicates that your company values its consumers and their demands. Ensuring web accessibility also implies that your company knows industry standard practices.
Websites that are easy to use do better overall. Your website becomes more accessible to all users by using universal design methods. This technique will eventually improve your site's performance, whether better-delivering messages and information, enhancing site navigation, collecting leads, or producing income.
2. Boosts SEO ranking
Various elements, including content and user experience, influence search engine optimization (SEO). Search engine bots are concerned with the user experience of your website and rank it based on usability. It is because search engine providers want to give only the best results to their visitors. Repairing accessibility issues, therefore, has the additional advantage of increasing SEO.
3. Ensures compliance with legal regulations
Accessibility is primarily advocated ethically. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is an international organization that strives to "bring the Web to its full potential." The W3C seeks to make the Internet more equal and inclusive, just as it is in the physical world. Everyone is included, irrespective of who they are or what they require.
When the web is entirely accessible, online barriers vanish. Universal web accessibility guarantees that all users have the same rights and benefits when conducting business online.
How to build a website accessible for all users
Making your website accessible is an excellent approach to promoting your company's inclusive ideals. Furthermore, building an accessible website might improve its overall success. It even enhances the user experience for all visitors to your website.
Here are some practical suggestions to help you make your website more accessible:
1. Transcribe YouTube videos to text with Happy Scribe to give the ultimate accessibility experience
Transcribe YouTube videos to text with Happy Scribe to give users the best video transcript experience. Happy Scribe turns voice to text effortlessly, so you don't have to throw away time manually transcribing it. Thanks to your transcription, your YouTube video is now ready to be reused, with more value added to your content. It has a significant impact on your audience when you provide transcriptions.
One of the most fundamental reasons for obtaining a transcript of YouTube videos is to make your content more accessible.
In addition to making information accessible to viewers with hearing difficulties, many people watch videos without sound. This decision may be influenced by the fact that they do not want to bother others, are not using headphones, are on the go, or are in a location with a lot of background noise.
Whatever the reason, transcribing your films allows more people to experience your work. Users can read the transcript alongside the material to assist them in comprehending the message, or they can use the search tool to jump to the sections of the content that interest them the most.
2. Ensure texts are easy to read
This component is crucial since many people will have difficulty seeing your text owing to a handicap, short-lived impairment, or even old age. Using a primary typeface with a large enough font size is one of the simplest methods to make your content readable.
Another critical step is ensuring that your site's color contrast is acceptable to your users. Reading text that fades into the backdrop of your page will cause significant complications for users.
Checking the contrast of your site is relatively straightforward, and several tools are available to determine if you're following best practices.
3. Have an updated website layout
Suppose your website needs to be updated or updated in a few years. In that case, the first step in creating a user-friendly website is to upgrade the general look.
Doing so entails combing your website's architecture and identifying instances where new technology and views on website building have evolved since its inception.
Also, use a poll to ask your present consumers which portions of your page they believe impede a better user experience.
4. Use alt-texts for images
Alt-text is a popular method for making visual information more accessible. Since search engine bots cannot "see" images, this is a crucial strategy for improving search engine optimization (SEO).
It would be best if you only used an alt tag to explain what an image is showing. You should never use it to add information to a current article or in a hazy meaning. A good explanation guarantees that visually challenged viewers may still understand what the image is portraying.
5. Use proper headings
Headings do more than make your content seem fancy and huge. They provide your website with a sturdy framework. Consider them guides that assist readers in swiftly scanning through the various areas of your website to get a sense of what each comprises.
Screen readers can read the layout of a website aloud with a suitable heading structure, allowing users to go from one heading to another swiftly.
6. Allow keyboard navigation
It would help if you allowed keyboard users to browse between portions of the website using the "tab" key. On well-designed websites, keyboard navigation will enable users to switch between actionable objects like links, form entries, buttons, and more.
Actionable inputs should respond to the "enter" key rather than a click. Similarly, suppose there is movement on the page, such as a widget or a slider. In that case, the user should be able to traverse these elements with the arrow keys.
In a nutshell
Web accessibility lets all users enjoy content online, irrespective of their ability. Website developers, designers, and content creators must take the time to discover what makes a website accessible to everybody.
It's even more critical that they take the time to learn how to remedy any accessibility issues on their website and if feasible, to put accessibility in from the start.
With so much knowledge and opportunity available online, website owners, in particular, should ensure fair and optimal access to digital content.