The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law on July 26, 1990, to increase access and provide equal opportunities for people with disabilities. For retailers, this law extended not just to brick-and-mortar stores but also to digital properties, including ecommerce stores and mobile apps.
Today, big name retailers like Amazon, Target, and eBay have faced litigation by advocacy groups for not having accessible websites. As such, it is crucial that e-commerce stores undergo automated and manual testing to find out whether their website is accessible to people with disabilities. Some areas that are important for ADA compliance include:
Consider the Sensory Needs of the Visually- and Hearing-Impaired People
It is important that your e-commerce store can be viewed by a person who is visually-impaired. To do that, you can build a screen reader into the store so that any text may be visible to a visually-impaired person.
You should also consider adding audio navigation or instructions to your website. One simple adjustment you can make is to define the language of your website so that people who use text readers can use them more efficiently.
Another important consideration is adding text transcripts for images and visual content so that visually-impaired people can properly understand the content on your website.
Make it Usable
It is important to make multiple points of access for every part of your website. For example, a person who has ALS should have another option besides using a keyboard to fill out a form on a website. An alternative can be an onscreen keyboard, which can help them fill out the fields.
In addition, the website pages should also have search fields so that users can easily look for information they want quickly. It is also a good idea to include a sitemap that can tell users at a glance whether the information they are looking for can be found on the site or not.
Bigger Font Size
People with visual disabilities may need to zoom the content of the website. Hence, ecommerce stores should design their website so that they can be zoomed up to at least 200% for more readability. You should also make sure that hyperlinks are bigger in size, bolded, underlined, or italicized, as well as have a different color to differentiate them from regular text.
Also, makes sure your formatting and fonts are constant. For example, if you want to emphasize an important point, do not use the same type of text as a hyperlink to highlight it. You must make it easy for your users to understand the content of your website.
Provide More User Control
Avoid using automated elements on your website. Even though an automatic popup is something that marketers love to add, it can be a nightmare for a customer with a disability. If you absolutely need to have a popup, you should give your customers a clear and easy option for exit.
In addition, you should also avoid videos that play automatically as they can confuse or upset people with certain types of disabilities. Websites should also not be time-dependent since people with disabilities often require more time to complete an activity.
Make sure your website elements are created in a way that does not hinder anyone’s accessibility.
Test Your Checkout Process
The checkout stage is the most important stage of the buying process, and it is important for ecommerce retailers to get it right. Make sure that once the customer has selected their products, written down their details, and has pressed the submit button, their order is immediately sent to processing — not vanish in front of their eyes.
About online shoppers abandon 70% of their purchases in the shopping cart. Make sure that you reduce the likelihood of this happening by double- and triple-testing your checkout stage because it can be very difficult for people with disabilities to start the entire process again.
Optimizing Your Website for Accessibility
Not only does ADA compliance prevent bad reputation and lawsuits, it also helps online retailers increase their market share and profit by providing equal access to their products and services. If an individual with hearing, visual, cognitive, or mobility issues cannot access your website, it increases the likelihood of losing sales.
CloudCafe Technologies offers a comprehensive set of e-commerce systems development services that implement your business rules as well as are compliant with the ADA. We follow the industry’s best practices so that you can offer your customers an excellent UX and UI, increase customer satisfaction, get more traffic, and get higher profit for your site.
To check out their ecommerce technology experience, visit us at https://cloudcafe.io/ecommerce-services/ today.