Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) define how people with different abilities or needs are able to use your site and access its content. But these aren’t merely standards. In most cases, they’re the law — compliance is not only mandatory, it is legally binding.
A lack of accessibility can make you vulnerable to expensive lawsuits. And that's not the only drawback. Non-compliance with WCAG guidelines can also lead to increased costs in customer support. For example, if someone with a speech impairment has an issue that needs support from your company; it’s not easy for them to call. Instead, they’re likely to use a TTY or touch device to send text messages. If your telco doesn’t support incoming texts, you need to buy hardware and install it and train your employees to use it. It’s much better for everyone if these customers can use your website to communicate about any issues.
On the flip side, there are several benefits of complying with WCAG guidelines. In this article, we’ll discuss five big benefits of web accessibility for your business and your customers.
Web accessibility not only makes your website accessible by disabled users, but it also goes a long way in improving your website's overall usability and user-experience.
Imagine a person who is physically unable to use a mouse trying to access your website. Making your website accessible or navigable with a keyboard will not just benefit disabled users, it will also benefit your broader user base — and yield long-term benefits like improved customer loyalty.
Several other web accessibility recommendations also improve the general usability of your site. For instance, alternative text for images help people with slow internet speeds understand the purpose of the content before or while it loads.
The gap between professional lives and personal values has narrowed. People want to do business with companies that align with their core values. A recent survey revealed that 62% of consumers prefer purchasing from a brand that’s willing to take a stand on issues, and 47% are willing to walk away if they discover that they’re not aligned with a company’s words or actions. These are big numbers, and they’re likely to get bigger as Gen Z increasingly populates the digital marketplace.
The cause of web accessibility is extremely important for people with disabilities — and for disability rights advocates. When you commit to building an accessible website, you send a message to the entire community about your support of the cause. This positions your organization as a brand that cares for the disabled. As a result, your business will get favorable reviews and recommendations from people that matter.
It's also a good idea to write an accessibility statement for your website that reiterates your commitment to web accessibility and describes the steps you’ve taken to accommodate people with disabilities.
In this webinar, TA Digital's six-time Sitecore MVP Ed Kapuscinski will revisit the mechanics of Sitecore personalization and will talk about how you can start leveraging personalization features on your existing Sitecore implementations using components and content that already exists.
An accessible website doesn't just make your site more usable — it also improves your overall site score, making your site more likely to be found by search engines and driving traffic to your website.
In simple terms, WCAG compliance is good for your SEO.
There are also cases where a business' web accessibility goals are aligned with its SEO goals. The reason is evident — a website with a clean interface and easy navigation is helpful for people with disabilities, and it also reduces your bounce rate (the percentage of visitors who leave your website after only one page visit).
Imagine opening a large department store and excluding products for left-handed people. Not only would you be doing a disservice to the entire segment of left-handed population, but you’d also miss out on revenue opportunities.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 4 U.S. adults live with a disability (including hearing disabilities, visual disabilities, motor disabilities, etc.). That’s a large segment of the population.
Improving your website’s accessibility makes great business sense. Just a few basic tweaks can go a long way in helping people with disabilities use your site.
Web accessibility can be interpreted as a civil right for people with disabilities. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), people with disabilities must be able to enjoy equal access to public services.
While the ADA does not directly address web accessibility, it has been extended into the digital sphere. In certain instances, the U.S. Department of Justice has concluded that the lack of accessibility for websites is a violation of the ADA.
The statistics speak for themselves. 2,387 web accessibility lawsuits were filed in the U.S. in 2022, skyrocketing up from 814 lawsuits just 5 years earlier. If your business wants to avoid claims of discrimination and facing the resultant legal action, make sure you comply web accessibility standards.
The Bottom Line
Web accessibility doesn't just benefit people with disabilities. Its advantages include boosted brand image, better search engine rankings, and an overall improvement in website usability.
By investing in web accessibility, you open your doors to more customers, subsequently leading to more sales and a definite competitive edge over a competitor who doesn’t accommodate certain customers.
But it can be a lot to take in. Knowing how and what to do, and in what order of priority, requires experience. At TA Digital, we’re doing just this — applying our experience to a variety of sites, from ecommerce to informational.
Schedule a call with our Experience Design team to make sure you’re reaping all the benefits of being WCAG compliant.
About TA Digital
TA Digital is the only global boutique agency that delivers the “best of both worlds” to clients seeking to achieve organizational success through digital transformation. Unlike smaller, regional agencies that lack the ability to scale or large organizations that succumb to a quantity-over-quality approach, we offer resource diversity while also providing meticulous attention to the details that enable strategic success.
Over the past 20 years, TA Digital has positioned clients to achieve digital maturity by focusing on data, customer-centricity, and exponential return on investment; by melding exceptional user experience and data-driven methodologies with artificial intelligence and machine learning, we enable digital transformations that intelligently build upon the strategies we set into motion. We are known as a global leader that assists marketing and technology executives in understanding the digital ecosystem while identifying cultural and operational gaps within their business – ultimately ushering organizations toward a more mature model and profitable digital landscape.
Recognized in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2019, 2020 and 2021 Inc. 5000 list as one of the fastest growing companies in the United States, TA Digital is pleased also to share high-level strategic partnerships with world class digital experience platform companies like Adobe, SAP, Acquia, commercetools, Sitecore, and Elastic Path.