Why Everyone Should Be Making Their Websites More Accessible ?
What is web accessibility ?
Website accessibility is the practice of ensuring everyone can access a website, including people with disabilities. According to the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), website accessibility means that “websites, tools, and technologies are designed and developed so that people with disabilities can use them. This is essential not just for people with disabilities, but also for everyone else who benefits from the Web”. In other words, accessible website is about making sure that everyone can use the Internet regardless of any disabilities they may have. There are several strategies you can undertake to make your site more accessible. Common examples include using alternative text for images and ensuring your navigation is easy.
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How many people have disabilities that affect their ability to use the internet
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, about one in five people have a disability affecting their internet use. This statistic is based on the 2016 American Community Survey, which found that 19.3 percent of people reported having a disability that limited their ability to use the internet.
These statistics show that a significant portion of the population cannot take full advantage of the internet due to their disability. Limited access to the web can impact their ability to engage in common activities such as staying connected with friends and family, getting news and information, or accessing educational resources.
Many organizations are working to increase accessibility for people with disabilities so that everyone can enjoy the benefits of the internet with web accessibility. By raising awareness and understanding of this issue, we can help ensure everyone has equal access to this critical resource.
Why website accessibility is important
There are many reasons why website accessibility is important. Here are three key reasons:
- People with disabilities should have equal access to information and content on the web.
- Accessibility can help businesses reach a larger audience, including people with disabilities and older adults.
- Making a website accessible can make it easier for everyone, not just people with disabilities.
People with disabilities often face barriers when accessing the information on the web. This can be anything from a non-compatible website with screen-reading software to a form that cannot be completed using a keyboard. Making your website accessible gives everyone an equal opportunity to access your content and services.
In addition to benefiting people with disabilities, making your website accessible can also help you reach a larger audience.
What are some common barriers to web accessibility for people with disabilities
There are a number of barriers to website accessibility for people with disabilities. One common barrier is that many websites do not consider accessibility during the design process. This can make it difficult for people with disabilities to use the website or find the necessary information.
Finally, many websites are not updated regularly to ensure they remain accessible. Therefore, new features or content may not be accessible to people with disabilities. It is important for website owners and developers to regularly test their sites for accessibility issues and make sure any new additions are accessible to all users.
Who benefits from accessible websites
An accessible website is one that everyone, including people with disabilities, can use. Having an accessible website is essential because it allows everyone to access information and use services online.
There are many benefits to having an accessible website. For people with disabilities, an accessible website can provide them with independence and access to information they would otherwise not have. For businesses, an accessible website can increase their customer base and make it easier for employees to use their company’s website. And for society, accessible websites can help break down barriers and promote inclusion.
Practical tips to make your website more accessible
Approximately 20% of the population globally lives with some form of disability. When creating a website, designers must ensure it is accessible to everyone. Here are some tips on how to make your website more accessible and follow web accessibility principles:
- Use clear and concise language. Avoid jargon and complex sentence structures.
- Make sure your site is well-organized and easy to navigate. Use consistent headers and menus so users can easily find what they’re looking for.
- Use high-contrast color schemes to improve readability for users with vision impairments.
- Use alt text to describe images for those who are blind or have low vision.
- Provide audio and video content transcripts for those who are deaf or hard of hearing.
- Provide alternative methods for inputting information, such as forms that can be completed via voice input or keyboard navigation.
Why accessible websites are good for business
An accessible website is vital for businesses because it means that more people can access and use their website.
There are a few ways accessible websites can benefit a business. One reason is that they support SEO campaigns. When a website is accessible to everyone, it is more likely to appear higher in search engine results. This means more people will see and visit the website, which can lead to more customers or clients.
Another reason accessible websites are good for business is that they show the company cares about its customers or clients. When a business makes an effort to make sure everyone can use its website, it allows customers or clients to access the information or services they need.
Help make the web a more inclusive place by promoting web accessibility
In conclusion, web accessibility is essential for everyone. Website designers and developers must consider accessibility in the design and development process. Everyone can help make the web more inclusive by spreading awareness of the importance of accessibility and advocating for inclusive design.
Ananya Prisha is an enterprise level Agile coach working out of Hyderabad (India) and also founder of High Level PM Consultancy. Her goal has been to keep on learning and at the same time give back to the community that has given her so much.