6 Tips to Make Your Website ADA Compliant
In this digital age, achieving ADA compliance for websites is crucial for businesses and organizations alike. Let’s delve into what this entails and why it matters.
Established in the early ’90s, The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination against those with disabilities in areas such as employment, public services, and telecommunications. While it’s straightforward to see the application of this law in physical spaces (accessible parking, braille labels on elevator buttons), the digital world has been slow to catch up. However, this trend is shifting.
In 2018, the ADA expanded its scope to include web accessibility. This means websites should now be navigable and accessible for individuals with disabilities. Achieving absolute compliance may seem daunting, but there are significant steps you can take to greatly enhance your website’s accessibility.
Here’s a roadmap to making your website more accessible and ADA compliant:
1. Understand WCAG 2.0:
The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 offer a robust set of recommendations to improve your website’s accessibility. Comprehending these guidelines is your first move towards compliance.
2. Undertake an ADA Compliance Website Audit
Use tools such as the WAVE Web Accessibility Tool, a Google Chrome extension, to pinpoint accessibility issues like missing alt tags and problematic styles on your site.
3. Employ Descriptive Alt Tags for Images
Alt tags are essential for screen readers, which visually impaired users rely on to navigate your site. Ensure every image on your website has a descriptive alt tag.
4. Reassess Website’s Visual Elements
Re-evaluate your site’s visual components, including buttons, headings, and links. Keep all types of users in mind, especially those with disabilities. For example, small, light-colored fonts on light backgrounds could present readability challenges for some.
5. Adopt ADA Compliant Content Writing Best Practices
Craft content that is conversational, simple, and easy to skim. Use headings and sub-headings to structure content into easily digestible sections. For acronyms and abbreviations, consider adding periods between letters so that screen readers can pronounce them accurately.
6. Check Your Website’s Code for ADA Compliance
Collaborate with a developer to scrutinize your website’s code and CSS, ensuring they follow best practices and are devoid of any outdated code.
The importance of ADA web accessibility compliance is growing. It’s time to adopt proactive steps towards compliance and privacy. Achieving ADA compliance is not a one-time task but a continuous commitment – a vital part of your website’s ongoing maintenance to ensure digital inclusivity for all users.