Web designers and developers now know the importance of being compliant with the requirements of search engine optimization for your website to be visible to masses. However, when it comes to the need for web accessibility, many are unaware of this term and concept. However, with the latest regulations related to website administration and also the changing search engine algorithms, web accessibility is proving out to be an essential need now.
In this article, we will discuss a few major decisive elements in terms of ensuring your website’s accessibility.
A study shows that nearly seven million adult population in the United States have vision problems, which comes to about 2% to 3% of the whole population. There is a wide range of impairments like color blindness, near- or far-sightedness, complete vision loss, etc. So, the content of the web pages should allow the users flexibility on how the text is displayed for all types of people to access and read it. There are various simpler options to achieve this goal and enhance the readability of text.
Some text features to consider are:
- Text size. Makes sure that the users can increase or decrease the size of text as they wish to. Your website text also should be displayed properly across devices like desktop, tables, mobile phones, etc.
- Color contrast. The contrast of text against the background is another big challenge to be effectively taken care of for the color-blind users to understand it properly. WCAG 2.0 puts for clear guidelines in terms of color contrast and size ranges.
It is an aesthetic approach to use images to communicate the messages than using text. However, as per https://siteimprove.com/en-gb/accessibility/website-accessibility/, there are some issues to be considered while planning for it.
- Taking care of the needs of the differently-abled people, it is better to avoid images to share any important information with the users. Say, for example, the home button usually comes with the icon of a house. However, if not provided with proper alt text, then screen readers may treat it is just another image or logo.
- Alt text for images. Adding proper alternate texts for images will let the proper with vision problems to understand what it represents. This is important also for the graphics like schematics, flowcharts, graphs, maps, or even for the menu buttons.
Another important feature of the website is hyperlinks, which let people navigate through websites easily. However, there are significant differences between how visually impaired people and others with normal vision navigate through the hyperlinks to access information.
- Clarity of the link. When people with vision read through the info, they can understand the context of the hyperlinks; however, people with poor vision understand the content from through the screen readers and access the hyperlinks from lists. So, it is important to properly name the hyperlinks than simply putting them as “read more” or ‘click here,’ but to be made clear on what it is meant for it.
- Readability of the links. The link addresses may sometimes be very long strings and listening to the link description may be an arduous task. So, try to put the common terms for hyperlinks and simple language to state the web address.
Starting from these three basic elements can be a good basement for web accessibility, and you can further build on it step by step to ensure your website being fully complaints with the accessibility guidelines.