Don’t lose out on valuable customers because your website isn’t accessible.

According to GOV.UK, up to 30% of their website visitors are using assistive technology to use their website. With 29% of their surveys stating they use a screen reader to access important websites.

That’s a huge proportion of potential customers that you could look without accessibility features for your website.

What is website accessibility?

Website Accessibility - Assistive Technologies

Web accessibility refers to making sure that everybody can enjoy your website, regardless of disability or personal difficulty. The WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) offers guidance on how to design and develop website that is in keeping with different capabilities.

Whether this is understanding your web design, making navigating around your website simple or making it easier to actually to read the content on your website.

Click here for an example of accessible website design by Copper Bay Digital.

How to make a website accessible

1. Use alt text for images

This is so screen readers are able to describe what the image is people with visual impairments. This also is an SEO tactic to help you rank better organically as it lets Google crawlers know what the image is.

2. Select a Content Management System that supports accessibility

WordPress is one of the better choices as it offers lots of options to improve the web accessibility. Some themes also have accessible web designs.

3. Use colours carefully for an accessible web design

Colour selection during the web design process is important as many people are actually colour blind and will be unable to understand some content.

Using a contrast between colours also helps some visitors distinguish between elements. They are more likely to perceive important information if there is a clear contrast.

4. Consider offering a font enlarger

Offering a feature where the visitor is able to increase the text size without affecting the whole website can dramatically improve the experience a user has.

Any call-to-action buttons should be clear and use a large font to ensure your user can find them easily.

5. Consider the different ways a user might move through your site

As some users suffer with fine motor problems, they may only be able to browse using their keyboard. As such, when you’re designing your accessible website, you should make sure your site can be browsed this way.

If you use frequent light boxes or pop ups, a browser who uses their keyboard to navigate may get stuck on the pop up/lightbox without being able to close it.

6. Using captions on any videos

Whether you’re using a video on your home page or on your social channels – using captions has become the standard. Not only does this make the media accessible for those with hearing issues, but it also offers convenience for browsers who are unable to turn the volume on at present.

7. Using headings correctly

Screen readers rely on heading tags (e.g. <h1>, <h2>, <h3>) to navigate content easily. Here are a few tips to ensure your web accessibility remains high.

Only use H1 for primary titles of pages with H2 being used as Heading Title. Whenever possible, try not to skip headings as a screen reader may wonder what content it has missed.

8. Tables should be used for tabular data only

It may seem obvious, but tables should always be simple and used for tabular data only. Each table should have HTML markups to indicate the header cells, data cells, and explain their relationship. This information provides context for assistive technology users.

9. Links should be descriptive

Having an appropriate and unique link goes a huge way in helping improve your web accessibility. For example, using ‘About Copper Bay’ instead of ‘Read more’ can be confusing without context.

Where possible, try to avoid linking a full sentence. However, it’s better to link a long sentence rather than linking a ‘Click here’.

10. Always test your website on a mobile

There is actually a fair bit of crossover between making your website accessible and ensuring your website offers a positive mobile experience.

Clean web designs and user-friendly navigation is key for both mobile browsing and web accessibility.

How Copper Bay can help you meet WCAG accessibility standards.

Our team are highly experienced in all aspects of website design and development, custom system builds, mobile app builds and digital marketing.

Contact us today to talk about website accessibility.