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How to Meet WCAG Standards

How to Meet WCAG Standards

As the world moves to digital platforms, it’s more important than ever to ensure you provide an accessible digital experience. This involves following Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) created by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). WCAG is considered the gold standard for accessibility, so if you follow these guidelines, you can rest assured that you’re doing everything you can to create an inclusive website experience for individuals of all abilities. Following WCAG guidelines means that you are also meeting Unruh Act and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements.

Components for Creating an Accessible Site

Website accessibility starts with the website’s foundation. You need to ensure that your website is built on a platform that allows for accessibility.

Here are all of the components of creating an accessible website:

  • Content - the information in a web page or web application, including natural information such as text, images, and sounds
  • Code or markup that defines structure, presentation, etc.
  • Web browsers, media players, and other “user agents”
  • Assistive technology, in some cases - screen readers, alternative keyboards, switches, scanning software, etc.
  • Users’ knowledge, experiences, and in some cases, adaptive strategies using the web
  • Developers, designers, coders, authors, etc., including developers with disabilities and users who contribute content
  • Authoring tools - software that creates websites
  • Evaluation tools - web accessibility evaluation tools, HTML validators, CSS validators, etc.

Digital Barriers to Look for

Digital barriers are simply anything that keeps an individual with a disability from using your website. If you have an existing website, look out for these barriers to digital accessibility.

  • Audio content without transcripts or captions
  • Images with missing alternative text
  • Empty buttons and links
  • Web applications that use only voice interaction
  • Low-contrast text and images
  • Content that moves or flickers
  • Page designs that can't be adapted using web browser controls
  • Websites or browsers that don't allow full keyboard support
  • Time limits to complete forms or actions
  • Inconsistent or overly complex page navigation

Four Principals to Follow for WCAG

When developing a website, or evaluating your current site, it’s important to follow the four WCAG principles for website accessibility.

  • Perceivable content means that all users must be able to perceive and understand all digital content and information featured on a website.
  • Operable content means that all users must be able to easily navigate information throughout the website.
  • Understandable means that all users should be able to follow, read and digest digital information displayed on a website.
  • Robust means digital content should be compatible with assistive technologies and should evolve with assistive technologies.

Contact us today to talk website compliance! We’ve partnered with AudioEye to provide a top-notch, accessible website experience for your website visitors.