Unlocking Web Inclusivity: How to Make Your Website Accessible for All

by | Dec 18, 2023

Welcome to the digital age, where the internet is our second home, and websites our virtual gateways. But are these gateways truly open to all? Let’s embark on a journey to unlock web inclusivity, ensuring every single user, regardless of their abilities or disabilities, can access and enjoy the vast expanse of the World Wide Web. Ready to learn “how to make your website accessible” for all? Let’s dive in!

Key Takeaways

  • Promote inclusivity and comply with legal standards by creating accessible content for all users.
  • Utilise alt text, simple language, visible focus indicators & high contrast colours to enhance accessibility and usability.
  • Leverage CMSs and website builders to ensure compliance & create an inclusive user experience!

Understanding Web Accessibility and Its Importance

Making your website accessible means ensuring that all visitors, including those with disabilities, impairments, and limitations, can use it without any obstacles. This practice is known as web accessibility. It’s not just about inclusivity, it’s about providing a good user experience, complying with legal standards, and ensuring access to online content and services for all. Think about it. Wouldn’t it be amazing if every person, regardless of their abilities, could explore, engage, and express themselves on the World Wide Web?

In addition to being a moral obligation, web accessibility is also a legal necessity. This has been highlighted in legal cases such as Domino’s Pizza v. Guillermo Robles and Gil v. Winn-Dixie, which underscored the legal importance of website accessibility and affirmed that web pages, including each individual web page, can be classified as public accommodations under the law. So, how do we achieve this goal? The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) are your go-to resource for making your website accessible.

Crafting Accessible Content for All Users

You could be questioning how to make your website’s content universally accessible. This requires shaping your content so that it is comprehensible and reachable for all users. This includes using alt text for images and simplifying language. Let’s delve deeper into these concepts.

Alt text, or alternative text, is a brief description of an image that enables those with visual impairments to understand the image’s message and its position on a webpage. On the other hand, simplifying language makes your web content easily understandable, especially for users with cognitive disabilities and non-native speakers. These practices ensure that no user is left out of the conversation.

Utilising Alt Text for Visual Media

Alt text is not solely for ordinary images. It is indispensable for intricate visuals like charts, graphs, or infographics to guarantee that users obtain all the vital information from these visuals. So, how do we craft effective alt text? Aim for accurate, clear, and relevant descriptions that stay within 125 characters. If an image is purely decorative, you can skip the descriptive alt text.

Adding alt text to your website’s visual content is easier than you might think. Most modern content management systems and website builders offer a seamless option to add alt text directly in the image settings. Simple, isn’t it?

Simplifying Language for Clear Communication

The use of simple language is an impactful method to broaden your content’s reach to a wider audience, including people with cognitive disabilities, limited language proficiency, or reading challenges. Utilizing clear and succinct language fosters a more inclusive online environment.

So how can you simplify your language for clear communication? Use simple words, write short and clear sentences, and employ clear headings. This will make your content more accessible for users with cognitive disabilities and those who are non-native speakers. Keep up the great work!

Designing for Keyboard and Assistive Technology Navigation

Even though making your content accessible is important, designing your website for effortless navigation is equally vital, particularly for users who depend on keyboards, assistive technologies, and screen readers. This involves implementing visible focus indicators and enabling full keyboard accessibility. Let’s explore these concepts in more detail.

Keyboard accessibility empowers individuals with disabilities who rely exclusively on keyboard navigation to access web content. It serves as a cornerstone of web accessibility, supporting various assistive technologies. In fact, you can test your website’s accessibility by using the Tab key to navigate through different areas of your website’s front end, ensuring that all interactive elements can be accessed.

Implementing Visible Focus Indicators

Visible focus indicators are an essential aspect of web accessibility. They provide a clear visual cue to indicate which element has keyboard focus, enhancing usability and accessibility of the website.

So, how can visible focus indicators empower users who navigate websites using keyboard or non-pointing devices? By providing a clear visual cue to indicate which element has keyboard focus, we can enhance the user experience, making your website more accessible to all.

Enabling Full Keyboard Accessibility

Ensuring full keyboard accessibility on your website means making sure all interactive elements like links, buttons, and form fields are easily accessible and operable with the keyboard. Sounds challenging? Not really. Opt for native HTML elements like links, buttons, and form controls whenever possible, as they are naturally accessible to keyboard users.

Enhance focusability by adding tab index to custom interactive elements. And, use ARIA attributes to provide extra information to assistive technologies.

Enhancing Usability with Colour Contrast and Text Size

Now, let’s investigate the role of colour contrast and text size in improving usability. These elements, despite often being overlooked, are essential in making your website accessible, particularly for visually impaired users.

High-contrast colours ensure that all users, including those with visual impairments and colour blindness, can effortlessly read text and distinguish elements on the page. The WCAG sets a high standard for text contrast at 4.5:1, but there are a few exceptions. Larger text and decorative elements have slightly different requirements.

Making Multimedia Accessible: Videos and Audio Content

In this digital era, accessibility assurance goes beyond text and images. Making multimedia content, such as videos and audio, accessible to all is of equal importance. This involves providing captions, transcripts, and using accessible media players.

Captions and transcripts have the power to make your content accessible to a wider audience, enhance comprehension, and provide a seamless viewing experience for everyone. Sounds like a win-win situation, doesn’t it? On the other hand, when choosing an accessible multimedia player, make sure it supports closed captions, gives users control over the content, is keyboard accessible, and complies with accessibility standards.

Captioning and Transcribing Multimedia Elements

Providing captions and transcripts for videos and audio content is a must when it comes to accessibility. They make sure everyone, including those who are deaf or hard of hearing, can access the information.

Adding captions and subtitles to your videos might seem like a daunting task, but there are plenty of tools and software options that can help you automatically generate captions for your videos, including:

  • Kapwing
  • YouCam Video
  • VEED
  • Media.IO
  • Animaker
  • Capcut
  • Maestra
  • FelixClip

Choosing an Accessible Multimedia Player

Choosing an accessible multimedia player is a crucial step towards making your multimedia content more accessible. A good multimedia player should have:

  • A user interface that works seamlessly without a mouse
  • A speech interface for effortless navigation
  • Compatibility with zoomed-in pages
  • Customisable accessibility options to cater to individual needs

Keyboard navigation in an accessible multimedia player empowers you to effortlessly navigate and engage with the player using just your keyboard. Adjustable playback speed in multimedia players is another crucial feature that makes content accessible to individuals with different cognitive abilities or hearing impairments.

Optimising Forms for Accessibility

Forms are a fundamental component of any website, serving various purposes such as user registration, feedback, or transactions. Have your forms been designed considering accessibility? Let’s explore how to optimise forms for accessibility.

Designing accessible forms involves using clear labels for form fields, providing concise instructions, and offering understandable error messages with visible indicators. Make sure to design form fields and interactive elements to be fully accessible by keyboard alone. This is crucial for users who rely solely on keyboard navigation.

Ensuring Site Structure and Navigation Clarity

Your website’s structure and navigation heavily influence its accessibility. A properly organised site structure coupled with transparent navigation can notably improve the user experience, particularly for those reliant on assistive technologies.

By organising your site’s structure and navigation with descriptive labels and headings, you can empower users to effortlessly find and access the content they need. Additionally, using clear headings can make your website more accessible to all users.

Creating an Inclusive User Experience with ARIA Landmarks

ARIA landmarks are potent tools that can significantly improve the user experience for those utilising assistive technologies. They offer valuable context and navigation options, contributing to a more user-friendly website.

ARIA landmarks divide the webpage into logical sections, helping users of assistive technology navigate and understand the content more easily. There are different types of ARIA landmarks, including:

  • Banner
  • Complementary
  • Contentinfo
  • Form
  • Main
  • Navigation
  • Region
  • Search

Leveraging CMS and Website Builders for Accessibility

Selecting the appropriate CMS or website builder can simplify the process of creating and maintaining an accessible website. They provide a plethora of features and plugins that are designed to comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) standards. Some popular options include:

  • WordPress
  • Wix
  • Squarespace
  • Joomla
  • Drupal

These platforms offer various accessibility features and tools that can help you ensure your website is site accessible to all users.

When choosing a CMS or website builder, consider options like:

  • Shopify
  • WooCommerce
  • Magento
  • Webflow
  • WordPress
  • Joomla!
  • Drupal

These platforms provide a range of features and plugins to create accessible web content, ensuring compliance with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) standards, including accessible rich internet applications.

Composing an Effective Accessibility Statement

An accessibility statement is:

  • Not just an assertion of your website’s accessibility
  • It serves as a testament to your dedication to web accessibility
  • A tool for transparency
  • A medium to invite feedback on improvement areas.

An effective accessibility statement should:

  • Showcase your dedication to web accessibility
  • Acknowledge any existing accessibility challenges
  • Present a clear roadmap for resolving these challenges
  • Provide a way for users to give feedback and suggestions

By creating an accessibility statement, you can demonstrate your commitment to making your website accessible to all users.

Testing and Improving Your Site’s Accessibility

The process of testing and improving your site’s accessibility is ongoing. It entails the use of automated checks, manual testing, and collecting user feedback to identify and rectify any accessibility issues.

You can use incredible automated checkers like:

  • WAVE
  • QualityLogic
  • QASource
  • Dynomapper
  • Accessibility Checker by CKSource
  • JAWS
  • Tenon

to ensure top-notch website accessibility. Remember, it’s crucial to regularly check and update adherence to web accessibility standards to stay ahead.


We’ve traversed a long journey, exploring various facets of web inclusivity and accessibility. From understanding the importance of web accessibility to crafting accessible content, designing for keyboard navigation, enhancing usability, making multimedia accessible, optimizing forms, ensuring clear site structure and navigation, using ARIA landmarks, choosing the right CMS or website builder, to composing an effective accessibility statement and regularly testing and improving your site’s accessibility, we’ve covered it all.

Web accessibility isn’t just about adhering to guidelines or avoiding legal complications. It’s about making a difference, creating an inclusive environment where no one is left out. So, are you ready to unlock web inclusivity and make your website accessible for all?

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make my website accessible UK?

To make your website accessible in the UK, check for accessibility problems, create a plan to fix any issues found, publish an accessibility statement, and ensure all new features are accessible.

How do I make my website vision accessible?

To make your website accessible, use high contrast colour combinations, simplify the text, increase body font size, shorten line lengths, and create a clear visual hierarchy. This will ensure all users have an optimal experience navigating your website.

What is web accessibility and why is it important?

Web accessibility is the practice of making websites available to all users, including those with disabilities or limitations. It’s critical for ensuring everyone can access and utilise online information and features equally, promoting an inclusive online environment.

What are ARIA landmarks and how can they enhance the user experience?

ARIA landmarks provide valuable context and navigation options to greatly enhance the user experience for those using assistive technologies.

What should an effective accessibility statement include?

An effective accessibility statement should express a commitment to accessibility, recognise any existing barriers and present a roadmap for resolving these issues, all with a motivating tone.