Web Accessibility: Issues and Possible Solutions

Most website owners understand that web accessibility is a vital human right. Furthermore, having an ADA-compliant website assures that your website reaches over 1 billion individuals with impairments. Similarly, the best practices for fixing accessibility concerns align with other business objectives like SEO, usability, and mobile-friendly designs.

Web accessibility allows persons with cognitive disability, visual impairment, and other issues to readily access online material. It is feasible thanks to material that is compatible with assistive technology such as screen readers, customized joysticks, and alternate keyboards. You may begin by determining how accessible your current website is before committing to comprehensive web accessibility testing. To assist you, here is a list of the 5 most frequent accessibility concerns in a website to look out for, as well as the reasons and solutions.

Accessibility Concerns

You must first be aware of the specifics of your website accessibility concerns before you can detect them. Any obstacles that make it difficult or impossible for people with disabilities to access, navigate, or interact with the material on your website are considered accessibility concerns.

Additionally, you must be aware of how people with disabilities access websites in order to comprehend how these problems arise in the first place. Depending on their handicap, cognitive limits, hearing loss or blindness, and personal preferences, they access webpages in different ways. People who are unable to operate a mouse, for instance, navigate websites only using the keyboard, while others utilize assistive technology like screen readers to read the text of websites aloud. Additionally, there are slip-and-puff gadgets that enable people with no arm movement limitations to utilize their breath to surf the internet.

5 Widespread Issues with Web Accessibility

The World Wide Web Consortium lists 78 success criteria for websites that want to be accessible. However, not every website will meet all of these success requirements.

Website owners and designers should be on the lookout for the 5 most prevalent accessibility concerns that may be found on most sector and industry websites.

1- Navigation Links That Are Not Appropriate

Because badly designed navigation links cannot be detected by screen readers, they might cause accessibility concerns. Because the screen reader will not skip past it, visually impaired users will have to listen to the navigation every time they visit a new page.

The answer to this problem is to correctly assign ARIA responsibilities to navigation menus in order to communicate the purpose of the link while making it navigable. On the web pages, a ‘Skip to main content’ link should be available to allow users to bypass navigation.

2- Inadequately Marked-up Data Tables for Screen Readers

Simple and complicated data tables are not differentiated in WCAG 2.0. Users must thus link the data in each data cell to the appropriate column and row headers.

For screen reader users to access the data in the tables, the basic data tables include one level of row or column headers that are correctly marked up. These tables employ the TD element for data cells and the TH element for row and column headings. Sadly, tables containing multiple levels of row or column headings are inaccessible to screen readers.

The usage of more straightforward data tables, which are simple to mark up, is the answer to this accessibility problem. While you may utilize the ID, HEADERS, and/or SCOPE characteristics to make complicated data tables accessible to screen readers, most screen reader users find it difficult to use these complex data tables with numerous header levels.

3- A Lackluster Colour Contrast

WCAG 2.1 sets guidelines for color contrast between text and background. For small text, the contrast ratio should be at least 4.5:1. Larger text needs a contrast ratio of at least 3:1. User interface components like buttons and icons also require a 3:1 contrast ratio.This color contrast is important for people with visual impairments. Without sufficient contrast, navigating a website can be difficult.

Using a colour contrast checker during the design phase to ensure that all text, background, and interactive components have the proper colour contrast ratio can help you avoid this web accessibility problem.

However, WCAG 2.1 exempts user interface elements that cannot be used by users, such as a deactivated HTML control, from contractual obligations. In this situation, an inactive user interface component could be present but not always functional.

A prime example is the submit button that you put at the bottom of your form. The reader may always be able to see this button. However, it doesn’t start working until the user fills out the necessary data on the forms.

4- Images That are Inaccurate or Don’t Have Text Equivalents

Users of screen readers typically rely on them to comprehend visual material. Because the visually challenged cannot see pictures, every image on your website has to contain an image alt text tag. As a result, each educational or significant picture for understanding the content of your web page should contain a text alternative or alt tag summarizing the image content. You must supply null alt text (alt=””) for photos that are purely ornamental and intended exclusively for visual design. You are not required to provide a description.

The easiest method to prevent this problem from arising is to formulate a plan during the design phase. Which photos need and don’t need relevant alt text must be determined.

5- Interactive Components That are Not Focused in a Logical Order

Users relying solely on the keyboard for navigating should be aware of the interactive components’ attention order. They should also know which element they are currently concentrating on. If there is no logical, sequential order for these items, users with different abilities may become perplexed. They might even become lost on the website. Users who rely on a joystick for navigation, such as those with poor vision issues or motor limitations, may find it particularly difficult.

The answer to this problem with web accessibility testing makes sure that as users navigate through the material, they see information in a focused sequence that is pertinent to the content’s purpose. Of course, the user should be able to browse via the keyboard as well.

Final Words

When you are aware of your accessibility issue, you can take the necessary steps to address it. Building accessible websites addresses half of the problem. You shouldn’t panic, though, if you are unsure whether your website has any accessibility problems. Web accessibility testing options come in many different forms.

Use one of the numerous automated tools to evaluate the condition of the site. Based on the tool’s results, determine the time and resources needed to set up an easily accessible and compatible web address. Connect with a Testing Agency to run automatic and manual tests to verify your site is free of problems before your users encounter them.