Recently, Gary Aussant, our Director of Digital Accessibility and Nancy Stewart, Founder and Managing Partner of Creative Strategy at Reardon+Stewart, co-presented to hundreds of healthcare marketing professionals at the NESHCo conference. The topic was the importance of website accessibility, and what digital marketers need to know about ADA compliance.
The good news is that the takeaways from the presentation can be applied in all industries and for all websites - because digital accessibility matters everywhere. Read on for 10 quick tips for improving your site's accessibility.
- Write using simple, easy-to-digest language. Aim for a 6th-grade reading level and organize content so it’s easy to skim, scan and navigate.
- Include accessibility best practices in your content strategy and governance, design briefs and digital style guides.
- Incorporate accessibility checks into design and development operations.
- Train writers, editors and service line managers in employing accessibility best practices.
- Use metadata (such as alt-text for images) and alternative content formats (such as transcripts for videos) to improve accessibility and SEO.
- Ensure your CMS enables you to mark images as ‘decorative’ or to add hidden text for links.
- Create a business case illustrating the direct and indirect benefits of more accessible digital experiences. Include ROI for an accessibility project.
- Ensure all your third-party content (such as syndicated articles) meets the same accessibility standards as your content.
- Publish a statement on your website that documents your commitment to providing equal access to information and outlines your goals and timeframe for meeting them.
- Hire an industry subject matter, inclusive design and website accessibility (WCAG) audit expert.