Is your website ADA compliant?
We have a lot of amazing customers and some of them are members of different small business associations and consulting groups, (which is great for us on many levels) and every so often we’ll catch wind of a horror story of a business owner being sued for their violations of the ADA on their website and it causes quite a stir. Luckily we’ve been aware of the ADA and the WGAC and their guidelines for years and so it hasn’t caused any problems for any of our clients but I thought I’d take this opportunity to reach out to our community with some information that will hopefully put people at ease and if not, at least point them in the direction of rectifying any current violations.
What is the ADA?
The Americans with Disabilities Act was a law passed in 1990 that set out to provide people with disabilities sufficient access to public areas. Back then, this meant business owners had install physical things like ramps and redo their restrooms. The internet did not exist as we know it today and in recent years, Congress has extended the ADA to address things on the internet such as websites and web applications.
Why business owners can no longer afford to turn a blind eye
They’re being sued! In 2018 last year there were over 2,000 ADA website lawsuits filed which was almost double the number in 2017 and experts expect that continue to trend upward.
How can you make sure your don’t get anything scary in the mail…
The W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) have created a continually updated set of rules called the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). These guidelines purpose is to make sure businesses are publishing accessible content that adhere to four key principles:
Perceivable: how usable the website is in terms of its content and how it affects a user’s ability to find and process the information on a website.
Operable: that the functionality of a website does not impact a visitor’s ability to navigate and use the site.
Understandable: ensure that website visitors are able to read, interpret, and comprehend all information and navigation on a website.
Robust: the back-end code used to build a website should function across the different types of tech and the common web browsers, and that the content displays properly for all users.
SO, the next time someone calls your business and tells you your “website isn’t visible” they might not necessarily be talking about problems with your SEO! If you have any questions and/or aren’t convinced your current webmaster is doing all they can, feel free to reach out to us at (323) 831-3300 or email me directly firstname.lastname@example.org
We make sure to test all our sites across a myriad of different diagnostic tools but here a couple that look for these issues specifically: