An often overlooked aspect of web design (especially for small businesses) is making sure your website is ADA compliant. This means it meets the specifications of the Americans with Disabilities Act (1990) that maintains that businesses in certain fields need to make sure their websites are accessible to those with visual and hearing impaired people as well as others who need assistance navigating the internet.
Perhaps this was brought to your attention by a customer or a friend, or maybe you received a letter threatening legal action from Apex Trial Law. Some people, such as Apex Trial Law send out letters stating that you're violating the ADA guidelines.
The ADA states that any business with a minimum of 15 full-time employees that operates for 20 or more weeks every year needs to meet the requirements. However, the ADA doesn't provide a specific set of guidelines for you to follow. So how are you supposed to make sure your website complies? Many businesses follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines or WCAG.
While not law, WCAG helps outline steps to take to make your website accessible. It lays out three tiers of guidelines:
The WCAG helps your website become easy to read and perceive for those who may have a visual disability. It will help make your site easy to navigate for those who may have trouble using traditional computing tools. Also, everything should be easy to understand and easy to access on any device or platform.
Even if the ADA lacks specificity, making sure your site meets the requirements is important. If you'd like to learn more about ADA compliance, what's required of you, and what the consequences can be, speak with a qualified professional such as a disability attorney.
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