Creating a stunning website that can be enjoyed and used by all users, should be the aim of every web designer. Unfortunately, too often the term “all users” is forgotten and missed out completely. But making your website available to everyone, doesn’t have to be too complicated.
Web Design and accessibility
Web design and accessibility is about making sure that browsing the web is a universal experience that can be enjoyed by everyone. Instead of being a challenge or a chore. And creating a website that is both responsive and well designed, and also accessible, can really make a big difference. This means being considerate of different needs, and taking steps to ensure that these needs can be met.
What are the most important considerations for accessibility in web design?
Some of the key considerations for providing a truly accessible website experience should be:
- design that meets the requirements of screen readers
- design that uses colour effectively
- design that uses typography effectively
One of the most common methods for people with a visual disability to access websites is through a screen reader. A screen reader is a web browser that can read the content of a website out loud. However, in many cases, even the most stunning of websites can be a challenge to listen to. As a result, you should consider:
- your use of <h1> to <h6> tags- screen readers can use headings to organise information. So make sure your content is in the correct order.
- using alt tags for images- a screen reader can’t read an image. So fill in the alt tag to give a description of the image and help users understand what is being displayed.
- use unique and descriptive names for links– instead of saying click here, use the actual page name to help with navigation
Colours can cause all kinds of effects. And if you want your website to be accessible, it needs to be legible. This means choosing a text colour that has a suitable contrast from the background colour. Otherwise users that are colourblind, or partially sighted, will be unable to make out the text from the background. In fact, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, specify that the contrast ration should be 4.5:1 for the perfect result.
Use your fancy fonts for embellishments only. Your main text, and your headings, need to be legible. This is important for all your users, and is not just a matter of accessibility. For people with a visual impairment, there are a variety of tools and plugins that can help to enlarge text. However, if your font sizes are based on pixels, this might not work. So make sure you use ems, instead, as these can be scaled up with ease.
For more information or advice, or for high quality, professional web design solutions, get in touch with the experts today, here at Pumpkin Web Design Manchester. We are Manchester’s leading web design professionals and we work with companies in a range of industries, across Manchester and the surrounding region, including Wigan and Southport, to deliver high quality web design solutions for effective results.