Tuesday, November 19, 2019
Web accessibility has made headlines in recent months with a number of senators calling for additional clarification of website accessibility requirements from the DOJ. While the future around web accessibility regulation remains uncertain, it’s important that business owners understand prevailing standards. We’re exploring these considerations in a series of blog posts where we tackle the four key principles of the WCAG 2.0.
In the first blog post of this four-part series, we shared an overview of the perceivable principle. For part two, we’re exploring the second principle of the WCAG 2.0: operable.
*It’s important to note that when we discuss those with auditory or visual disabilities throughout this series, we are not only speaking of those with the most commonly known disabilities, such as deafness and blindness. Other auditory and visual disabilities include colorblindness, and partial hearing and vision loss. Other factors that may impact one’s ability to access content on your website may include reading disabilities, a language barrier, a slow internet connection and limited access to small screens on handheld devices.
The list below is not intended to be an all-inclusive guide for website developers. Instead, it simply explores how some common website elements can be modified for greater accessibility.
According to the WCAG 2.0, under this principle, “user interface components and navigation must be operable to users.” In other words, visitors should be able to navigate through your website without any limitations around functionality or time. The content on your site should operate using alternate methods for those that rely on assistive technologies. Below are the guidelines that website developers and designers must keep in mind when creating an accessible website.
Under this guideline, you should “make all functionality available from a keyboard.”
A website should function with the use of a keyboard for those that are unable to navigate through a website using a mouse.
Under this guideline, you should “provide users enough time to read and use content.”
Websites should eliminate time constraints so that users can complete tasks at their own pace. Users should have control over website content that moves or scrolls throughout the page in order to read and understand the information at their leisure.
Under this guideline, “do not design content in a way that is known to cause seizures or physical reactions.”
Websites must omit any content elements that may cause seizures or other physical reactions.
Under this guideline, you should “provide ways to help users navigate, find content, and determine where they are.”
Users should be able to easily locate where they are on the site, navigate through the site and find the information they are searching for.
Under this guideline, “make it easier for users to operate functionality through various inputs beyond keyboard.”
Users should be able to interact with a website using additional input methods, such as touchscreen, voice or device motion.
You can check your website’s accessibility here. Next up, we’ll dive deeper into Principle 3: Understandable.