A recent study found that 19 percent of Americans (56.7 million people) have a disability where many of which affect their ability to use the web.
Starting January 18, 2018, all technology, including a website, that falls under Section 508 is required to meet new ADA accessibility standards. To build a complaint website, get in touch with ADA compliant Website service in Des Moines. Searchable Design LLC is a premier web design company specializing in ADA compliant Website service design in Des Moines.
What is the ADA?
American Disability Act or ADA was enacted in 1990. It is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public.
Did You Know? Nearly 1 in 5 people in the USA have some form of disability.
In 2010, about 8.1 million Americans had difficulty seeing, including 2.0 million who were blind or unable to see. About 7.6 million people experienced difficulty hearing and 5.6 million used a hearing aid. Roughly 30.6 million Americans had difficulty with movement.
What is ADA compliance for a website?
ADA Compliance came in existence to address the difficulty faced by the disabled to access electronic and information technology.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) published the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design in September 2010. This requires every website to be designed in accordance with ADA law. Those who do not comply with the law will face severe consequences.
What does ADA law effects?
- Americans with disabilities and their friends, families, and caregivers
- Private employers with 15 or more employees
- Businesses operating for the benefit of the public
- All state and local government agencies
Benefits of designing an ADA compliant website
Differently-abled people make a good portion of website users. There are many benefits to adopting ADA compliance while building a website as it caters to both regular and differently-abled users.
a. Increases Your Target Audience
The ADA compliant website doesn’t only target the generic audience but also the people with disabilities. The internet users with disabilities account for millions, hence it’s a big number to miss out on. Many of them who are interested in your product or services may not be able to access your website which encourages them to move to other websites or your competitors.
For instance, a video with no detailed caption will only be useful for non-disabled users. A person with a hearing problem will find difficulty properly understanding the content of the video. The images with no alt text can be a problem for a blind person who uses a text-to-speech tool.
b. Improvement in SEO Efforts
Search Engines are constantly updating their algorithm to a rank website that serves the greater purpose. Accessibility is a key factor in deciding the website’s SEO effort. A website which is accessible to the people with hearing, seeing or movement issue can help this niche audience along with ranking higher in the search engines.
For this reason, Meta tagging, alternative image text, and video transcripts should be seriously considered.
c. Grow Your Reputation
The more you offer to society, the more you gain from them. In fact, the website in compliance with ADA doesn’t only help people with disability but also establish your business as a valuable institution he society. Your website or business will be referred more in the disability circle which in return will increase your customer base and brand value.
d. Better Website Usability
A website which is easily operable and navigable will benefit users along with meet the website usability guideline. Making a website more usable helps not only to rank better in the search engine but also cater to users with a disability. If you decide to follow the guidelines, your website will likely convert more leads across the board because users will trust that they can always easily find the content they need.
e. Avoid Penalties
Department of Justice made it compulsory for websites to adhere to the policy of the American Disability Act. Businesses with a website must make sure their website is accessible to everyone. Since we’re past the ruling date, all updated pages on your website are required to be at least grade A complaint, with grade AAA being the highest.
Making your website ADA compliant is the best way to avoid lawsuits that have already affected the large corporations.
Four Principles of ADA Website
These are the four principles that are applied to every ADA website.
The information posted on a website must be presentable to users in ways they can perceive, hence the principle highlights that the content is available in multiple formats. This can be achieved by; placing an alt-text tag on an image, alternative options for CAPTCHA, and providing captions for all media content.
A website must be user-friendly in the sense that every user, despite their disability, should be able to navigate a website without running into limited functionality or time limits. A website should have a feature to navigate through the site using only their keyboard, the user has the ability to pause scrolling information, and the web pages are titled with a topic or purpose
This principle requires all webpages to be readable, predictable, and have the capability to correct user mistakes. You can do this by providing instructions for all user input fields, and a user is able to confirm their financial transaction before submitting an order.
ADA requires the website to be robust enough to be able to interpret by a wide variety of user agents, including assistive technologies. HTML documents should include start and end tags and do not contain duplicate attributes, and a user can programmatically determine the name and role of a user interface form.