Did you know that a website must comply with specific criteria from the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)? It’s essential to have your website audited for ADA compliance to:
- make sure you’re providing a good experience for all your visitors, and
- to avoid a costly lawsuit (on average a $50,000 settlement).
Some disability figures to consider are:
- One billion people (15% of the world’s population) experience some form of disability, and an estimated 20% globally (110 million to 190 million people) experience significant disabilities. (Source: Disability Inclusion Overview – World Bank Group)
- The worldwide disabled community’s collective discretionary spending power is more than $8 trillion, with $4 trillion of that in the USA. (Source: The Return on Disability Group)
- Approximately 75% of disabled consumers will walk away from a business because of inaccessibility. (Source: Data and Strategy Survey, Cygnal)
The ADA and website usability/accessibility
The ADA has helped many millions of people worldwide gain improved access to buildings, public transportation, and support services since it began rolling out in 1992. At the time, no one was thinking about websites. Although there is no definitive final rule (yet) from the Department of Justice, decisions have been handed down that extend ADA criteria to all publicly accessible websites by companies that qualify as “places of public accommodation.”
Aside from potential litigation from users (especially if this matter becomes law in relation to websites), businesses are wise to implement compliance measures as inclusive partners in business with their website visitors. Aside from matters of inclusivity, corrective accessibility measures are far less costly than a lawsuit.
What does ADA compliance have to do with websites?
Over the past two decades, there have been an increasing number of significant lawsuits and settlements that could have been avoided by getting ahead of the problem. In general, complying with ADA criteria helps you prevent a potential (and very expensive) floodgate of suits before reparations can be made.
For websites, this means ensuring that you are doing all you can to make the content available to those with vision or hearing disabilities, mobility limitations, and cognitive or neurological impairments. It’s also simply a good business practice to treat all of your site visitors with respect for their needs and can only help your company cater to more people.
Boal Media ADA website audits
Boal Media has a CPACC certified accessibility team; this certification is provided by the International Association of Accessibility Professionals, a respected organization working in the field of accessibility. (CPACC stands for certified professionals in accessibility core competencies.)
These professionals will review and test your website and provide a detailed report including all identified ADA compliance issues. In testing a web application for accessibility, a tester needs to act as a real end-user to provide realistic feedback, using the following tools:
- Screen reader testing using JAWS (Windows desktop), iOS VoiceOver on Mac and other Apple devices, NVDA, and TalkBack on Android devices
- Keyboard-only testing
- Color contrast testing
- High contrast testing
- Text-only zoom testing
- Full browser zoom testing
Boal Media audits your website for errors, issues, and warnings using our auditing tools and manual checks. Through this website audit and testing, you will receive a detailed list of the issues and recommendations of the corrective steps necessary to achieve WCAG 2.0 Level AA web content (that’s website content accessibility guidelines for the rest of us).
Schedule your ADA compliance audit
Contact Boal Media to have your site audited; it’s an important step toward ensuring your digital presence is welcoming to all users looking for your goods and services. If it’s been several years since your last website update, we can also address adding features that make your website more dynamic to improve your digital footprint and conversions.