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Five things you can do to improve the web accessibility of your website

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If you want to ensure that your website is accessible to everyone you need to focus on inclusive design during web development.

But you may not know where to start when it comes to inclusive design. So here are five handy tips to follow to make sure your website is accessible for everyone, regardless of any disability or health condition they may have.

Choose an accessible font

Some fonts are easier to read than others and the right font can really help you get the message across. Fonts come in two main types or groups. These are serif and sans serif.

Sans serif means without the serif (or decorative line). Use sans serif fonts like Arial and Calibri because these are the most accessible fonts. Some people find it difficult to read serif fonts because they distract the eyes and the brain from the overall shape of the letter.

For more information about accessible fonts you read Recite Me’s guide on Choosing An Accessible Font.

Alt Tags tailored for web accessibility

Using alternative text labels (aka alt text or alt tags) is vital for web accessibility.

All images need to have alt text labels so if a blind or visually impaired person visits your website and is using a screen reader they can access the text description of what the image is composed of.

If you add Recite Me to your website it will allow users who are blind or visually impaired to have the alt text description of an image read aloud to them at the click of a button.

Write in plain English

The harder your content is to read, the less accessible it is. So the main thing to remember here is to keep it simple. The average reading age of the UK population is nine years, which means people have reached the reading ability normally expected of a nine year old.

And data from the 2011 UK census shows that a growing section of the UK population either don’t speak English or speak a different main language other than English. Plus around 15% of the UK population have a learning difficulty like dyslexia.

So it’s vital to use plain English to make sure your web content can be read by as many people as possible.

Provide captioning and audio description on videos

Just imagine you are deaf. Now think about watching a video – the audio is irrelevant now. It may as well not exist. That’s why it is so important to caption videos.

Also, recent research showed that eighty-five percent of all videos viewed on Facebook are viewed without the sound on, so captioning helps get your message to mainstream audiences as well.

Use a logical page layout that is accessible for assistive technology

It’s important that you think about using a page layout that is easy to understand and navigate, especially for blind or partially sighted people and those with learning difficulties like dyslexia. This includes making sure that people can complete simple tasks such as buying a product or checking service information in as few steps as possible.

You also need to ensure that screen reader and keyboard-only users can access your website. Recite Me’s web accessibility software can make your website accessible to everyone at the click of a button. And it also works fully with screen readers and all other types of assistive technology.

Try Recite Me’s free online web accessibility scanner today, in addition to our accessible website plugin.

If you want to find out how you can make your website more accessible using Recite Me book an appointment for a product demonstration and your free 30-day trial now.

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