Boost your bottom line with accessibility

Should you think about accessibility?

But I’m in politics, B2B, <insert why this doesn’t apply to you but does excuse here>

  • Accessibility is especially at home in politics. I recently addressed the fact that all 2020 US Presidential candidates are failing when it comes to digital integrity, which includes accessibility.
  • B2B organizations sometimes (mistakenly) believe that if they are not dealing directly with consumers, they don’t have to create accessible content. That’s just plain wrong. You might be a B2B organization, and thus your risk of a lawsuit might be lower, but it’s still there. After all, your business partners have people working for them, and those people may have a disability. And yes, you have people working in your organization, including those with disabilities that require accessible content on the Intranet or in other collaboration tools.
  • Even if your organization doesn’t face a lawsuit or you don’t operate in a country where accessibility is legally mandated, you still need to think about user experience. And user experience is fundamentally intertwined with accessibility. You need to Stop Designing For Only 85% Of Users!

Oh, but you’re too busy.

  • I just told you the numbers. They speak for themselves. Regardless of your industry, a growing percentage of your customers has a disability. Don’t you want to sell to them? And don’t you want them to recommend your service or product to others?
  • You can eat the competition’s lunch. Yes! Given two similar products or services, one represented by an unusable website or one that offers quick access to information and purchasing opportunity, which would you choose? Right, we all would choose the latter. This means that there can be only one winner of the challenge, either you or your competitor. So will those with a disability. So which website experience do you want to provide?
  • Gain ease of mind, and tell your leadership and board of directors that they, too, can rest easy. After all, in the US and other countries, accessibility is legally mandated. Since courts and governments have ruled that accessibility must be provided to users in these countries, consumers are using lawsuits as a way to get organizations’ attention and force accessible digital development. With legal action and headlines on the rise, will you be next? And are your executives comfortable with seeing themselves on the front page of the news in this context? I’m guessing not, so best get on with it.

Great, you can spare an hour or two!

  • Accessibility policy documented for everyone working in the digital space
  • Accessibility statement posted to digital channels
  • Accessibility tags added to content in a digital channel(s)
  • Add closed-captioning to any videos on your website (YouTube’s automatic captioning is very good in most cases, but take the opportunity to review and edit where necessary).
  • Make sure there’s adequate contrast between your site’s text and the background. Faint text on a busy background can present an obstacle for people with decreased vision-even people in their 50s with typical vision for their age are often frustrated by gray text on a white background.
  • Make sure your site can easily be navigated with just a keyboard-this ensures you’ve properly coded the page content to be accessible to those with a disability.
  • Add captions and alt-text to images-so they can be read by assistive devices.

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Kristina Podnar

Kristina Podnar

160 Followers

Digital policy innovator, helping organizations see policies as opportunities to free the organization from uncertainty, risk, internal chaos.