Need to add web accessibility to your site? These digital tools and services can be your fresh set of eyes.
You may already know that web accessibility is a crucial part of modern design. But many internet users report that accessibility is on the decline in recent years. How can we correct this?
The WCAG recently released a new set of guidelines for various facets of web accessibility. These accommodate all kinds of disabilities, from temporary to permanent to situational. Incorporating these standards into your design will make you reevaluate the fundamentals of your website and how users interact with them. It’s a worthwhile endeavor. Not only will more users feel comfortable and included in your website’s design, but new SEO standards favor these accommodations.
But accounting for new web accessibility standards can get complicated fast. For some outside help, we’ve put together a list of various tools to help make sure you’re on the right track.
General Accessibility Checkers
While we highly recommend the hands-on support of a consultant, these automated tools are a simple way to gauge your site’s accessibility.
As the “trusted leader in digital accessibility,” Deque offers online training and audits to ensure your web accessibility is up to standard. There is a free trial for their browser extension.
Monsido offers an entire platform for comprehensive web accessibility checks with the option to book a demo.
Tenon’s platform includes development tools, audits, and training to help you add web accessibility at every step of building your site.
WebAIM offers audits, training, and technical assistance for web accessibility concerns. They also offer accessible site certification.
Part of Perkins School for the Blind, Perkins Access takes a holistic approach to web accessibility.
Specific Accessibility Checkers
These tools are helpful for checking accessibility for specific disabilities.
For some users with visual impairments, color schemes with strong contrasts are crucial for effective navigation. This tool will evaluate the contrast ratio of any two colors on your site. Available for Windows and Mac.
Many visually impaired users rely on screen readers to navigate websites. Using one yourself is a great way to access web accessibility, as you’ll have an idea of how users will interpret your design.
This PEAT tool from The Trace Center can identify seizure risks if your website contains videos or flashy animations.
Professionals in the broadcasting and marketing fields use this tool. Generate and edit subtitles for videos in just a few minutes.
Check for dead links all at once with this free tool. You can search one page, an entire website, or multiple websites at once. Or you can sign up for a regular auditing service.
As you use these tools to up your web accessibility, keep in mind these are only meant as aids. Don’t make the mistake of using them in place of putting in the manual work to revamp your website. Automated scans will account for a small percentage of the WCAG and may not keep up with updated web accessibility requirements. Instead, let these tools set the foundation for your web accessibility efforts. Once you have the basics down, you’re free to make the tricky design choices that will really make a difference.
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