15 Jul 10 Effective Ways to Make Your Website and Apps More Accessible
As compared to the last decade, accessibility has become more of an important concept that many brands are keeping in mind before having a website made. Back then, applications, websites and even games were separately made for people with any sort of disabilities. However now, the focus has shifted to inclusive designing where websites and applications are made for everyone, including people with disabilities.
Usually when creating a website, web developers choose to build them for a perfect person who has strong literacy skills, can touch a device or mouse, and has perfect hearing and vision. While there is only a small percentage of people who have all these attributes, there are many who don’t. Which is why, poorly thought-out solutions may not be the best way to be accessible.
However, this is not the only way you can make your website usable and accessible for your clients to access.
1. UI Components and Graphical Objects:
Other than providing images, it’s also essential to include other graphic elements accessible to all kind of users. For example, if your website is using icons or info graphics with low contrast then people with vision impairment will find it difficult to look at it.
In reality, event enough there can’t be a perfect level of contrast for everyone, a guide-line instructs it to be at a ratio of 3:1. Attributes such as the border and menu icon without text should be tested by different people to compare which background contrast is best. You can even use the eye-dropper style tool for testing.
2. Allow Pages to Have Accessible Names:
Many visitors with impaired hearing tend to use assistive softwares like screen readers so that they can have the program read the full web page for them. To put it simply, the software reads whatever content is present on the page. So, in order to prevent users from having to go through the trouble of listening to all of the content on a page, make sure that they can access only the bits that they actually want to know.
Offer screen readers certain shortcuts so that users can browse from headings, links and type of content they want the software to read. The visitor can then navigate between listen to all of the page or just one heading. This can be done by adding browser derive accessible names. For example, <legend> (forms), <label> (form fields), and <caption> (tables).
3. Enable Visitors to Browse With Headings:
Both designers and developers need to think about using appropriate semantic HTML elements which can be essentials for users to browse the website with. Screen readers, browsers and other user softwares use markup to understand the content and its purpose.
An h1 might be the main page title, which is followed by an h2 heading for each major sub-section of content. If there were any sub-sub-sections, those would feature h3 headings:
The same way that sighted users scan content that has headings, appropriate heading markup allows screen readers to do the same. This is a picture of a heading list in screen reader NVDA, which allows users to scan through heading elements on a page.
4. Make the Website ‘Viewable’ to Visitors with Hearing Impairment:
It’s important to keep in mind that while the world depends on sound for obtaining information, there are users who can’t access the content without the help of a software. Adding a comment field can be helpful in knowing different views of your audience who visit your website. Subtitles in videos can also work wonders.
According to top designing companies, there are many deaf users who only ‘speak’ sign language. In addition, they might not even speak or understand the local language of their country. However, just because some of your audience can’t listen, doesn’t automatically mean that they can’t read. Provide Sign language if you’re a bigger organization.
5. Design Your Website with Cognition Impairment in Mind:
Cognitive disabilities cover a wide range of what a normal human needs for their everyday life – for example, but not restricted to, problem-solving skills, comprehension, low tolerance to cognitive overload, and difficulty in reading.
When talking about the design and layout of the website itself for the users with cognitive impairment, professionals recommend using the required guidelines. This can ensure that all of your audience can have a view of your website, as well as get the information they need from it. You can complete this task by:
- Keep Content Short and Clear: The key is to be clear with what your main point is and this can be ensured in every paragraph. Avoid posting blocks of text, instead make sure to use bullet points as much as possible.
- Always Align your Text to the Left: Prevent yourself from posting your content in justified text. This creates uneven spacing between your words.
- Use Sans Serif Fonts instead: Not only are they easier to read, but also allows text to be equally distributed in the paragraph. Avoid using all capitals, underline or bold.
- Make Sure to Include Images with Text: Use simple images with text to get your audience Use simple diagrams and icons to illustrate main points.
- Use Color Contrast: Chances are that your audience might view your content through a color filter. However, avoid using too much color. Less is always more.
Accessibility for All is Good
Keep in mind that by making small changes in your website designing can leave a positive effect on your audience. They will even appreciate your efforts for remembering them. Visit Webmization and see what we have to offer in web design services.