WHY ACCESSIBILITY MATTERS FOR YOUR E-COMMERCE SOLUTION

Let’s assume you have a lustrous, brand new, gorgeously designed E-Commerce storefront. This is it; you lastly made your vision of marketing Turntables for Kittens a fact by means of the internet. Cheers! What a fantastic time to be successful indeed. But, there’s one main difficulty here… you concentrated on a strategy where timer based carousels with animations of lasers shelling out of the kittens eyes run wild. To top it off, there are ‘equable setups’ like parallax with a group of red text on uppermost of black backgrounds since the artist’s kitten ‘Cat Damon’ encouraged them to scheme your store that manner. The fact is, you designed and constructed your website for a very specific viewers and did not even contemplate about customers who may not efficiently use your site due to incapacities or age. Now those individuals are not fetching or networking with your site. You are dropping traffic and site visitors. Conversions are down. It is a misfortune!

As per US GOVT:

The huge and budding market of individuals with infirmities has $175 billion in open spending, as per the U.S. Department of Labor. (12) $175 billion is nearly twice the spending power of teens and greater than 17 times the expenditure power of tweens (8-12 year-olds), two demographics adored by businesses.

Not just there is a greater prospect to provide to a bigger consumer market to escalate your productivity, on the more central level, web user-friendliness is a primary human right and requests to be preserved as such. So we, as designers, developers, and storeowners are in need of doing a better job of factoring in these instances and design  inclusive web experiences that work for the biggest number of individuals likely and aid those with low vision, deafness, dyslexia, anxiety, users on the autism spectrum, and those using screen readers.

Following are the several simple methods to turn your online store additionally reachable, and guarantee that the utmost individuals probable can shop at your store.

Lesson #1: Don’t simply purchase a “Random Theme”

With the increasing fame of SaaS based E-Commerce solutions for instance BigCommerce, Shopify, and Demandware, – there are countless pre-built themes saturating the market. For a mom & pop startup store – buying one of these themes (or even shoddier, downloading the free ones) is a very fast way of accomplishing your store being up and running. While several of these themes are certainly visually attractive, a very large mainstream of them are in dearth of core basics that make a manageable site. Some of them are even not very practical. It may appear like a economical way of getting a quick ROI with your store – but you are most undoubtedly going to be paying for it in the end.

Lesson #2: Empathize With Your Customer

As the storeowner, you may not even be aware of the way in which you can determine if a person with a disability is in a position to relate with your site, accidentally losing tons of impending income from those users. A means of determining if your store is user-friendly for all kinds of users is to put yourself in the shoes of one of your customers with a disability.

Consider a person with low vision who wants to make a purchase on your site. The base font size on your site is 13px – which will nearly be certain to be unreadable by a person with low vision. Suppose that person then moves to make use of a screen reader or an audible software to browse through your site as the content text is illegible, but there are loads of marketing banners with text in the image section without appropriate alt descriptions. Now that individual will never be able to know what you’re attempting to market on your store and, as a consequence of your site not being handy and working, that individual probably won’t make a buy on your store.

Conceivably after observing how tough it is to use your site for somebody with a disability, you may begin reassessing how things were designed and built. I will note conventional answers and custom themes are sometimes just as awkward as marketplace themes. Although you paid a Solution Implementer for a custom theme and you anticipated amazing quality work – frequently you will be frustrated to find out that web accessibility was not well thought-out all through design or development. So it is imperious to hire the correct Solution Implementer, with an established track record of success with Section 508, ADA, and WCAG compliance.

Lesson #3: Accessibility begins with design…

KISS! Keep it simple, stupid is a kind of buzzword in life and it is applicable here as well. The notion of effortlessness in layout and content is vital to all users. Your customers do not need to be stunned, so a “mobile-first” style is a decent starting point and a fair enough thing for accessibility in general. There is a motive why approximately majority of visited and used sites in the world are marginal, well-organized, and at times just plain ugly. Those sites are constructed so that everybody can use them commendably.

In addition, users with low vision and color blindness unquestionably need to be considered during design.

Color contrast levels are significant for users with infirmities who may have concern aiming on text colored likewise in the background. The main takeaway here is constructing a design and elegance that is artistically attractive while not bargaining the content or experience for those with visual impairments.

Color blindness, for instance red-green confusion, yellow-blue confusion, and monochromicness, can also make it hard for users with those impairments to define when a color is used to convey a sense or action, so it is significant for continuously backing it with proper text and even sometimes shapes.

Now do not misjudge my meaning here. You do not have to project your site to be dull and make it appear like a Microsoft Word Document. If considered with obedience deliberations in mind, and examined by a web developer who comprehends web accessibility before development commences, you can have an attractive, usable, and reachable storefront. Not to refer, E-Commerce sites typically have the identical structure and flow to them. So store owners previously have a one up over their content site equivalents as impaired users will recognize how they should be relating with your site. Due to this, you can generate a visually stunning site; it’s now depending on your developer to convert that into an accessible and usable store.

Lesson #4: …and carry on with fair enough development

We struggle to yield better markup and track certain code rules and best practices when evolving sites so as to be handy and usable. Few of those code guidelines comprise but are not restricted to:

  • Suitable heading structures – a flawless hierarchy of the maximum vital header to the least.
  • Visually hidden off-screen content to offer better context to definite sections of your site.
  • ARIA roles to facilitate assistive device users navigate your site.
  • Emphasize styles to aid users to be aware of where they are on a page – particularly essential for those traversing the page using just their keyboard.
  • Avoid main content link so users making use of screen readers are not needed to listen to the same Header and Navigation content on each page they browse to.
  • Readable font sizes and no text in pictures.
  • Alt tags to make an asset’s drive clear.

Now if the modules up to this point have been kept an eye on and you have an reachable and usable storefront up and running – your duty as a storeowner is still not over…

Lesson #5: Accessibility is never “fully complete”

One of the collective trends we perceive with storeowners is that they will run some tests, style a few slight alterations to advance accessibility, and then “call it a day”. Building your store accessibility should never be “once done and forever through”. There are frequently things you did not think through or unused during the initial run through, so GET COMMENT from your real-life customers to absorb how to make the procedure of Homepage to Checkout simpler and cooler to surge those conversions.

There are also innumerable tools out there to aid you test accessibility on your site. Screen readers for instance JAWS, which can be expensive, and free substitutes like NVDA are two of the best used audible software packages in the market. Automated testing tools such as Siteimprove, Wave, etc. can help hook a percentage of issues but clearly should not be depend on on solely.

Keep in mind; the takeaway of this lesson is that receiving feedback, accomplishing audits, and testing your store essentials to be continuing and long lasting.

Some tools for better accessibility

Color Oracle

http://colororacle.org/

This splendid tool applies a full screen color filter over some web page or application simulating color blindness and displays you in real time what individuals with common color vision impairments will grasp.

A11y Checklist

https://a11yproject.com/

This beneficial site delivers clear advice and guidelines on web accessibility.

WebAIM Color Contrast Checker

https://webaim.org/resources/contrastchecker/

WebAIM are not only promoters for web user-friendliness, but they offer a cool tool to test the grouping of two colors and shows the ratio level and if passes WCAG standards.

Siteimprove Accessibility Checker

https://goo.gl/SQey9t

A pleasant and cool Chrome extension to execute checks for convenience issues providing innate, visual feedback straight in the browser.

Lighthouse
https://goo.gl/RdA4f2

Swiftly becoming one the customary tools in our accessibility arsenal, Google’s open source tool checks the accessibility performance, finest practices, and PWA standards of any web page. It’s built right into the audit panel and can be run immediately.

headingsMap
https://goo.gl/s3xmqr

Nevertheless one more great Chrome extension, headingsMap, creates a tree, built on the headings on a page and highlights any that are inappropriate in terms of hierarchy (or have been missed totally).

In Conclusion

To say in a nutshell for the “too long; didn’t read” crowd – having an manageable and usable store will, devoid of a doubt, escalate profitability, cut bounce rates, and rise those irritating conversions. Not to mention, on a additional human level you are making it a slightly easier for a great number of individuals to shop online.

Bear in mind that AD2BRAND has a recognized track record in this arena and can be your long-term partner in producing your site accessibility and usability. So, set yourself distant from the rest of the crowded non-compliant online stores and reach us today to take the first step in the direction of accessibility!

Meanwhile, cheers to making the web more manageable.

So, in conclusion, while choosing a theme for an E-commerce website, we need to think from the customer’s perspective and then design. We can test the accessibility using various tools.

We at Ad2brand is the leading digital marketing agency in Pune that gives the best e-commerce solutions with beautiful e-commerce websites with complete accessibility.

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