As business owners, we want to make our online shops accessible to everyone, unfortunately, there are millions of users out there who are left out of the equation when it comes to making sites user friendly for all.
There are many different disabilities and conditions that can affect the way a person uses a website, we are going to focus on the most common ones:
Visually Impaired: This includes a partial or total inability to see or to perceive color contrasts.
Hearing Impaired: Some users have a reduced ability to hear.
Physically Disabled/Impaired Motor Skills: Users may have difficulty moving parts of their bodies, including making precise movements (such as when using a mouse).
PhotoSensitive: Conditions such as epilepsy can cause seizures that are often triggered by flashing lights.
Cognitive Disabilities: There are also many conditions that affect cognitive ability, such as dementia and dyslexia.
The idea behind web accessibility is that everyone should be able to use a site on the internet regardless of any condition that affects their capability.
Why you should make your site ADA Compliant?
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was developed in 1990 and is meant to ensure that people with disabilities have the same opportunities as anyone else. ADA compliance also applies to websites and even mobile apps. Basically, this means that your website needs to be accessible to people who have disabilities that affect their hearing, vision, or physical capacities.
Dozens of brands have been hit with significant lawsuits in recent years before the guidelines were even set in stone. Currently, there is a safe harbor clause that allows your existing content to remain as it is unless altered after January 18, 2018. However, the guidelines do pertain to any page that has been updated after that date. So if you want to avoid the legal costs of being found non-compliant with the ADA, it’s best to make the necessary changes to your website now.
We are outlining the Top 3 Shopify Accessibility Apps available, including options with free plans. These apps automatically transform your site with accessibility tools so that you don't need to spend hours adjusting code and formatting.
Our last pick is new to the app store, but we have already used it on a few of our customer's sites. No code needed and it's completely free.
Its' features include:
Easily control the placement of the widget on your site
Control font size of text
Adjust colors and contrast
Add reading line and bigger cursor
Adjust brightness or convert to grayscale
Whichever app you choose, know that you are taking steps to make your site accessible for everyone. *Please note these tools will not make your site fully ADA Compliant, they will add tools to your site to make them more accessible. Please visit W3C for a full list of Accessibility Guidelines. CLICK HERE
Would you rather watch our video discussing these apps? Check out our Youtube Video, to hear more.
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