- More than just a legal requirement, accessibility is the right thing to do.
- Understanding the importance of web accessibility in a brand can help avoid expensive lawsuits, reach new customers, encourage brand loyalty, show a positive image, and more.
- Digital accessibility requires consistency and commitment to make it a part of your work culture.
Why your business needs a digital accessibility policy
Your business might get sued :
An inaccessible website means people with disabilities using assistive technology cannot access your website or digital documents. You could lose business, receive complaints, and be sued due to inaccessibility. Which, in turn, could cost you hefty legal fees, court costs, human resources, and lost time, among other settlements.
- It gives a broader reach
People with disabilities use the internet for the same reasons as everyone else – shopping, learning, entertainment, banking, and more. Since over one billion people live with some form of disability, you can miss out on a large customer base if your websites and apps are not accessible.
- It helps with brand loyalty
People are more comfortable with brands that are committed to a social cause. Consumers who have repeated positive interactions with your company are more likely to become loyal to your brand. If your products and services are digitally accessible, these returning customers are more likely to be retained.
- It provides more recruitment options
Most businesses have moved to online recruitment. Employers should also create accessible digital content for applicants, including plain language job posts, alt text, and visuals, among others, that can easily be inferred with assistive technology. By offering accessible platforms where even disabled users can apply for jobs, you can attract and recruit the best talent.
- It is their right
The ADA and Sections 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act ensure people with disabilities have equal rights and opportunities for education, employment, government services, and consumer life. It also includes fair access to websites, mobile applications, and other digital content.
- Good Reputation
Digital compliance means your website is usable for everyone. Companies that care about accessibility and inclusion can create positive experiences for customers and employees. They will be happy to know that your organization is trying to uphold an accessible environment that supports all users equally, boosting your public image.
- No Compromise on Website Designs
An accessible website does not have to sacrifice aesthetics. Most brands have this misconception that to create an accessible design, it must be dull and unappealing, with fewer colors, limited fonts, and interactive elements. In reality, most accessibility elements are in the code and not visible. The visual components can look like the designer intends – elegant, minimal, or monochromatic, with accessibility guidelines in mind.
- It’s great for SEO and conversion rates
SEO practices overlap with the latest WCAG guidelines. Making your digital content WCAG compliant can improve your SEO, increase organic traffic and conversions, boost your market share and improve your reputation.
How to start planning to make your brand digitally accessible?
- Plan strategically Accessibility is easier to implement while you’re in the planning phase — plan and prioritize by incorporating accessibility into your digital strategy. You can start with a content audit to see where you could improve and incorporate accessibility. Add accessibility features, look over your product roadmap, and identify critical points where you can implement them strategically and technically makes sense.
- Consult designers and accessibility experts Designers and accessibility specialists play a meaningful role. Minor design changes sometimes mean massive digital accessibility modifications that can significantly impact many users, such as contrasting colors, more prominent clickable elements, and more. Through Document Accessibility Software, experts with a foundation in digital accessibility can create compelling, accessible designs.
- Share your accessibility statement You can make a strong statement, clearly stating your accessibility strategies and goals for web accessibility. Even though they are expected on public websites, let people know on social media, in press releases, blog posts, and emails that you are fully committed to including people with disabilities.
- Keep testing for accessibility regularly Always ensure your digital resources are accessible through standard testing methods. To be fully accessible, users must be able to use it independently. Digital accessibility is an ongoing process. An accessibility audit utilizing a combination of manual and automated testing can help you identify current problems and solutions to improve your website’s accessibility.
Digital accessibility will soon become the norm – it’s essential to view it not only as something your digital platforms should have but as something your company incorporates in the development process of any product and service.
If your brand strategy didn’t include accessibility before, you could start now with the help of accessibility services available to you. With automated testing like Document Remediation Software and an expert review team, it’s not too late to begin making accessibility a part of your corporate environment.