Things to Look for in an Accessibility Audit of your Website

Accessibility Audit of your Website

Accessibility audit and ADA compliance are some of the important things businesses and website managers should be fully aware of and prioritize in their business operations. If you own a website or mobile application, it is, therefore, crucial that you perform an ADA compliance audit for your business.

In case you have no idea of what ADA compliance is, we will quickly shed some light on what an accessibility (A11Y) audit for websites is. Then, we will move to the aspects you should look out for during the ADA compliance audit.

What is ADA Compliance

What is ADA Compliance

ADA compliance is an important part of the accessibility audit of your website. It’s also referred to as the Americans with Disabilities Act, which is a 1990 law prohibiting discrimination based on disability. The revised standards version of the regulation is a civil rights law that ensures that all electronic and information technology such as websites are accessible to people with disabilities.

These standards state that companies and businesses must ensure that people with disabilities are assisted at physical and online public locations. It is important to stress the fact that ADA compliance is somewhat different from the 508 compliance.

Okay, so you already know the importance of  ADA compliance for accessibility audit of your website and now wish to implement it on your website. Now is the time to discuss the things to look for to ensure that you eventually have a website that adheres strictly to the ADA requirements.

Images and Videos Accessibility

Images and Videos Accessibility

One of the main things to focus on during an ADA compliance and accessibility audit of your website is ensuring that everyone can view and hear everything on your website. This is because, according to statistics from the 2018 National Health Interview Survey, 32.2 million American Adults (18 years and above) reported experiencing vision loss.

In addition, one in every eight people in the US (i.e., 30 million) from the age of 12 years or older has hearing loss in both ears. Therefore, every company and business owner running a website or mobile application must adhere to these ADA guidelines. Being able to answer some questions will help you ensure proper audit.

Questions to Ask Yourself During Your Audit:
  • Do my videos and audios have transcriptions and text captions?
  • Can adding audio descriptions, gesturing or other details make images and videos on my websites more accessible?
  • Do I have flashing visuals that may cause seizures?
  • Do I use alt tags for graphics so people using screen readers can also access the links?
  • Does my website have alt tags that can allow screen-reading software to interpret my media?
  • Do my graphics that are not meant for adding a page’s message have empty alt tags?

Website Navigation

Website Navigation

While performing your website audit, another area you should focus on is how easy people with disabilities can easily navigate your website in multiple ways.

You should be sure that your website does not hinder the efficient functioning of tools made for people with disabilities to easily navigate through websites. For example, your website should allow maximum functionality of keyboard and mouse alternatives for people with disabilities, as well as screen-reading software for the visually impaired.

Questions to Ask Yourself During Your Audit:
  • Can screen-reading software read forms with field descriptions?
  • Do I have “skip navigation” links that permit screen-reading software to move straight to the main content of the page on my website pages?
  • Can screen-reading software read all my texts?
  • Does my website allow using a keyboard for navigating pages?
  • Does my website put users in a dead-end simply because it only allows navigation with a mouse?

Much thought and consideration should be given to visually impaired people when creating your social media content and during your web design process, in the sense that people with visual impairment are able to browse the Web the same way anyone would. How accessible the content is, depends on how you handle your text and links.

Questions to Ask Yourself During Your Audit:
  • Can screen-reading software read PDFs on my website pages?
  • Does my website allow for modification of font size and text color?
  • Are my links not misleading? Do they indicate what they are created for?
  • Does my website include high-contrast color pairings that allow easy reading of text on the screen?

Conclusion

Ensuring the accessibility audit of your website that your website is accessible to people with disabilities does not only make your website user friendly and drive more customers to your business, It also helps you avoid fines and penalties you could face from not adhering to the regulations.

In addition, it is important to know that an audit is a great first step to your organization’s accessibility journey. By conducting an ADA compliance audit, you will be able to improve your website functionality and search engine results that can lead to higher profits for your company.

Although ADA compliance audit can be a time-consuming process, it is definitely worth it!

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