Here at Pumpkin Web Design, we are Preston’s leading web design and content marketing professionals. We provide valuable web design, SEO, and marketing solutions to a range of clients, across the North West, including Southport and Wigan, as well as Manchester. As a result, we have produced this guide to everything you should know about accessible web design and improving SEO.
What is accessible web design?
Accessible web design is a web design principle that involves designing for all types of users, so that your content can be understood and used by everyone. This encompasses all of the different disability types that can affect how a user experiences your website, including visual, auditory, physical and cognitive barriers. As a result, accessible web design must meet four principles. These include:
- Perceivable- all website users need to be able to access and perceive your content. As a result, you may need to consider designing for screen readers, and using alt text options.
- Operable- all website users need to be able to use your website, on any device. To achieve this, you may focus on navigation and layout options that increase ease of use.
- Understandable- your website needs to be understandable. This is both in terms of the content itself, as well as the structure, design and layout.
- Robust- your website needs to be able to be compatible with different technologies including screen readers, and needs to stay fully working despite technological updates.
How can accessible web design improve SEO?
So, how can designing your website to meet accessibility criteria and standards help to improve the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)? Well, this can have a positive impact in a number of ways, including:
- The importance of structure- both SEO and accessible web design value structure. This means that when creating an accessible website with appropriate page titles, headings, and sitemaps, you will also be improving the quality of your website in terms of the SEO guidelines too.
- Using image alt text- image alt text is essential for screen readers and those with visual impairments. As the image cannot be shown to the website user, the alt text is used instead, which is usually a short sentence of phrase stating what the image is showing. This is not only beneficial for your website users, but it can also help search engine algorithms understand what your content is about too. This is quicker and easier than processing an image, and it can result in the image being added to the relevant search results. That’s a win/win!
- Usability- designing a website with the accessibility guidelines in mind means really focusing on usability and functionality. In practice, this means creating a navigation system that is easy to understand and a layout that is logical and easy to follow. This will also involve removing invalid or broken links, as well as de-cluttering the screen. As a result, your website will be more professional, appear more authoritative and be more likely to meet the high standards of search engine algorithms.
For more information or advice about SEO, SERP rankings, accessibility, and professional web design, get in touch with the experts here at Pumpkin Web Design.