Telltale symptoms of poor website accessibility and how to fix them

Published on July 18, 2019
/ Article By Jimmy Bisenius

When the team at Educated Design & Development tasked us with auditing and improving their existing their website accessibility, we were thrilled to take on the task as we knew we were the right team for the project. Coming from an in-house built CMS, the client was excited to move to WordPress (which most of their Marketing team has experience with) and they were also readily awaiting the SEO benefits that would come from converting their decorative text headers from images to text as well as making their content responsive and accessible. After finishing their project, we wanted to break down a few easy-to-fix and easily diagnosable issues many of you are facing with your websites.

  1. Problem: Buttons & Links are too smallOne of the most common problems we see is buttons & inline links that are too small or improperly labeled to be used as intended across all platforms! Often this can be extremely detrimental to site performance/accessibility on websites that sell products & services as users that intend to purchase from you may be left unable to do so.

    Solution: Increase button & link size!

    As obvious as this answer is, it’s often left incomplete. Depending on how your website was built, there are various ways to increase your link/button font size & padding. Below we’ve placed a link here for your reference regarding how to increase button & link sizes.

  2. Problem: Poor font sizing/spacingAnother extremely common problem and similar to the previous problem, is text that is incorrectly sized/spaced to the point where it is illegible. This can occur commonly when the site hasn’t been properly developed across all environments, and the fonts don’t scale as expected across various platforms or the website isn’t legible without the intended font. This can be a problem for your website often as it may leave your reader with a lack of information about your products, services, or business.

    Solution: Increase your font size & line spacing, and test!

    Still relatively straightforward, this problem is easy but tedious to solve. While you can just increase your font size & line height for all text, this isn’t always easy and inline styling often makes this easier said than done. The important change to make rather is to increase font size & line spacing as the browser gets smaller to ensure content is easily legible for all viewers. Next, simply test your website across various conditions (Dial-Up Internet, Restricted Access ,etc.), and platforms (Windows, OSX, iOS, Android) to ensure accessibility! This can be rather tedious and expensive if you don’t have the time or devices however, which is where we can help if necessary 😊 Regardless, below we’ve placed a link here for your reference regarding how to increase your font size & line spacing.

  3. Problem: Improper content sizing/placementFinally, the last easily diagnosable problem in our list is Improper content sizing/placement. This can often occur when your website isn’t properly tested across all platforms like the previous two problems, and it can result in content overlapping each other as the browser scales and conditions change which can cause undecipherable text and the inability to complete actions on your website such as purchasing products or services, completing contact or mailing list forms, etc.

    Solution: This problem is probably the most challenging to solve, as different websites are built differently and various browsers & conditions will result in improper rending of your website depending on the technologies it’s built with. Similar to the previous problem, this is a tedious solution of identifying individual problems site-wide, marking them, and them individually resolving and testing them. We’ve placed a link here for your reference regarding how to fix improper content sizing/placement.

 

Overall, content accessibility is an extremely important issue that directly affects your site performance. You should always try to maintain your content accessibility, and we hope this information has been helpful! As always, if you have any problems feel free to reach out to us at the service desk or directly at (919) 653-0790 and we’d be happy to help!

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