As digital marketers, we hold the key to opening infinite amounts of information to be able to provide access for all users. When we incorporate accessibility – visual, auditory, motor, speech, or cognitive disabilities – into designing websites, we improve the world around us because we are spreading knowledge and reaching out to more people.
While there’s a lingering notion that designing web content and mobile apps that are accessible for all costs a lot of time and money, there are digital marketers and strategists who have worked on ways and means to meet accessibility requirements that are free and easy. All it takes is just investing a few hours of time doing research on how to improve your app your website’s accessibility.
In the US alone, approximately 1 in 5 Americans have a disability. Designing for accessibility is a highly important aspect for businesses who want to succeed in the digital world. While accessibility provides a better user experience for all regardless of disability, there is a convincing case for brands to have more accessible websites. When brands have accessible websites they usually get better results, a wider audience, more search results, and are more user-friendly than websites that are not accessible.
We’ve collected a short list of guidelines for you and your business to follow so your website can be more accessible for all users.
- Color Contrast – for the visually impaired, CTA buttons should have good contrast so it can easily be read. Also, the contrast ratio between the copy and background should be balanced for better readability.
- Use Text Labels or Patterns – For some users, having graphs are not enough when it comes to inclusivity. Other users or readers with low visual acuity, utilizing text labels or patterns are more helpful. Use an icon to relay messages or commands. At the same time, when charts and graphs are unavoidable, refer back to color contrast to ensure readers can differentiate information.
- Use Instructions with Form Fields – Rather than using placeholders, the copy in the form fields should instruct and help people who use screen readers.
- Alternative Text for Non-text Content – When using images, describe the image in detail and how it’s related to the content. This will give the person using a screen reader a better understanding of what’s happening on the website.
- Markup Your Content – Using proper heading marks helps users identify the structure of the content they are reading.
- Keyboard Navigation – This is one of the important ones to consider. Having keyboard accessibility helps users with motor disabilities or who use screen readers navigate a website better.