An accessible website is suitable for everyone

An accessible website is suitable for everyone

Why do you have a website?

The goal is not to have a website but to have a website that works. The web should work for you, provide information, entertain, sell, educate… People go to the web because content and information. Therefore, it is necessary to meet the needs of users.

Imagine you have school website. Children’s parents will not call you how much they pay for lunches and when they should pay for them if they simply find this information on the school’s website. (How we helped to the school in Trutnov?)

Imagine you have e-commerce site. You don’t have to have an information telephone line if customers simply find information about returning products on your website.

An accessible website is suitable for everyone

People are different. Did you know that:

  • 9 % of men are colorblind (only 0.4% of women) [1],
  • more than half of the world’s population will be nearsighted by 2050 [2],
  • 10 % of the population has learning disability [3],
  • 26 % of the population is in the range of 50-70 years?

But for example:

  • 67 % of users browse the internet from a mobile phone or tablet and this figure is growing [4],
  • voice control is an emerging trend.

How do I recognize an accessible website?

At first glance? Not at all. It does not fundamentally limit the accessibility of the creator in any way. There is no contradiction between creating an amazing and accessible website.

Accessibility has a major impact on the user experience (UX) [5]. An accessible website contributes to readability, allows the customer to quickly find information and quickly navigate on the website. The accessible website is also safe, you can read about this in my interview for NÚKIB – Why have an accessible, safe website?

“Why have an accessible website?” “Because no one will ever complain about your site being barrier-free.” Radek Pavlicek [6]

Advantage 1: Contrasting colors and a suitable font size make it easy to use the web from small screens or in a bright room.

Advantage 2: Alternative texts attached to images are useful for users with a slow internet connection.

Advantage 3: Transcribing audio into text or captions in a video are great helpers for users who are in a noisy environment and do not have headphones available.

The most common websites issues

There are many ways how to throw a spanner in the works to users. Sometimes, however, those spanners create an unmanageable barrier.

For all the users:

  • navigation on the web is chaotic and the web has a complex structure, texts are complicated and uninteresting,
  • descriptions are not informative enough, auto-fill does not work, web search is missing,
  • pop ups appear unexpectedly on the web,
  • link texts are not meaningful or descriptive enough.

For mobile users:

  • the website is not fully responsive,
  • clickable elements are too small or too close together,
  • the font is low contrast (not visible in the sun).

For seniors, partially sighted, near-sightedness:

  • the font is not contrasting,
  • inappropriate font parameters (font size, font readability),
  • the links are not differentiated and visible enough.

For dyslexics:

  • as the font is enlarged, some content is lost or long lines are created that are difficult to read,
  • whole paragraphs are written in capital letters (excluding headings).

For people with personality disorder:

  • the site contains moving or flashing elements that draw attention from content,
  • a background sound plays on the website, that cannot be turned off.

For e-readers and voice control:

  • Missing skip links and defined site sections (header, footer, main and secondary content, etc.),
  • navigation is not consistent (it is in different places on the web, content changes, etc.),
  • headings and other semantic blocks (lists, etc.) are used incorrectly, images do not have alternative descriptions,
  • attached documents do not have a text layer, videos do not have subtitles or a text transcript,
  • there are duplicate links on the website immediately after each other.

For keyboard users:

  • the website is not fully controllable from the keyboard,
  • the focus of the clickable elements is not visible or has little contrast.

Conclusion

Do not take website accessibility requirements as a limitation and not at all just as an obstacle that just needs to be avoided. Take an accessible website as a challenge. The results are worth it. You may not notice the differences at first glance, but for many people it will be a fundamental change.

Resources

[1] https://cs.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barvoslepost

[2] https://zpravy.aktualne.cz/zahranici/lidstvu-hrozi-slepota-do-roku-2050- rapidne-pribude-zrakove-p/r~2d96ad18784711e7986b0025900fea04/

[3] https://www.learningsuccessblog.com/what-dyslexia-infographic

[4] https://www.netmonitor.cz/sites/default/files/prilohy/Cesi_Online_2020_Infogra fika_SPIR.pdf

[5] https://uxdesign.cc/website-accessibility-and-ux-how-are-they-related- c3693f81cbc0

[6] https://poslepu.cz/proc-mit-pristupny-web/

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