WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO HAVE AN ACCESSIBLE WEBSITE?
When websites and web tools are properly designed and coded, we create barrier free communication. However, currently many sites and tools are developed without accessibility in mind or use tools that create accessibility barriers that make them difficult or impossible for some people to use. Having an accessible website or and web tool benefits individuals, businesses, and society through expanding your business message or reach to a product as we move more and more towards a digital age of commerce. It is no longer enough to have a simple brochure site that may or may not work well on all devices, 54.4% of all business is not conducted on mobile devices. Making a site accessible does not only refer to making the site accessible to individuals living with health conditions that may prevent them from standard web viewing. Accessibility encompasses everything from mobile friendly design to dictation services (built in screen readers) for your site.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF AN ACCESSIBLE WEBSITE FOR MY BUSINESS?
As our population continues to age, font size or contrast adjustments are just some minor factors to consider when making a website more accessible. Closed captioning is not just for video but ensuring your site’s content is screen readable is just one simple way to ensure that everyone can access your information. Alt tags, and other elements all assist in creating a website that is accessible while increasing the organic Search Engine Optimization (SEO) of your site.
WHO GOVERNS ACCESSIBILITY ON THE WEB?
Various International web standards define what is needed for accessibility and it is the law. Canada is leading the way to creating barrier free environments by passing a law called The Accessible Canada Act (ACA) which came in force 2019 with the goal of creating a barrier free society by 2040. This act is enforced through the Council of Federal Accessibility Agencies (CFAA) along with the Accessibility Commissioner. Ontario also has their own Accessibility compliance agency called (AODA) which has goals of creating barrier free environments by 2025. Last filing date was June 30, 2021, next additional filing date is set for December 31, 2023 (see here for further details).
There are 7 key areas that most of theses Acts and/or Compliance Agencies look at when considering what needs to be accessible. These areas that are considered to be vital in accessibility are:
Information & communication tech (ICT)
Communication other than ICT
Design and delivery of programs and services
Procurement of goods and services and facilities
Some of these may seem familiar focus points for accessibility but others are new to the world of accessibility such as Information & Communication tech. Imagine yourself 15, 20, 30 years from now; trying to navigate through the digital realm with a little less than perfect vision or new tech that may be foreign to you at that age. Ensuring you stay open to all, ensures you stay open for business.
Since the web is innately global here are some other key compliance acts/agencies to mention and Kre8iv works with all of these governing bodies to ensure we have you and your digital assets covered for true accessibility:
ADA = American Disability Act
WCAG 2.1 Compliance
WHERE TO START?
Kre8iv specializes in ensuring all designed digital assets are created in such a way that allows anyone to interact with the indented message. Through partnerships with key players in the Accessibility market using AI, we take the guessing out of whether your site is accessible. Through daily automated scans using proprietary coding, we can smartly insure that your site stays up to date with the last trends in accessibility backed by reporting, audits and litigation documents if needed.
Whether you are looking at creating a new site or continuing to use your existing site, Kre8iv can make any site user friendly and accessible to all without breaking the bank to do so. Call to speak with our Accessibility Web Specialist at (416) 525-8043 for a free quote.