How To Create Accessible WordPress Websites
December 5. 2019
Did you ever wonder what does it mean to create accessible WordPress websites? What does it mean for it to have accessibility? Many would think that it is actually rather easy to have access to a website, but is this really what we are talking about? You are correct, it is not. If you were wondering what it means to create accessible WordPress websites, you are in the right place. We will talk about the right type of accessibility.
Based on the data collected by the World Health Organization (WHO), there is a very relevant population of people with vision impairments. This number amounts to 15% of the global population. Let’s let that sink in for a second. This means that nearly 300 million people will have a hard time on your website, potentially because they cannot see well enough (or at all). These are the people you need to take care of. You want your website content to be accessible to them as it is to other people. They could be your key target audience as well. However, in order to have them, you need to help them digest your content.
How do you create accessible WordPress websites?
The first thing we discussed was the reason for it. More often than not, many are not even aware of this fact – there are a lot of people with visual impairments. This is what you are trying to address, out of two reasons. First, you really wish to have everyone with equal access to your content. Second, this is a large population of potential customers that would otherwise miss out on everything you have to offer.
So, what you want to do is to use certain techniques to ensure that people with visual impairment are able to have the full potential of your website. But, visual impairment is just one way of your website not being accessible. What you need to do is to consider what types of impairments there are. Some people are maybe unable to use a mouse, whereas others can’t see colors. The tough job is to find a way to cater to all these needs, with a single website. So how do you go about doing this?
Step number 1 – make sure to have WordPress as a content management system
This is of vital importance considering just how seriously WordPress takes web accessibility. The whole thing goes as far as having a full blog dedicated to accessibility. This is a testimony to just how much they are invested in it. Using WordPress as your main tool will bring you one step closer to achieving your goal.
Furthermore, if you want to create accessible WordPress websites, you can do it with ease using countless plugins. These plugins are here to make your job and life much easier. This is why you need to make sure you use their full potential.
If plugins weren’t enough, we have accessibility-ready WordPress themes!
So if you thought this didn’t get any better, you have accessibility-ready themes. These are absolutely brilliant. If taking something out of the box is not really your cup of tea, you always have the option to simply use the existing patterns and make something yours and unique out of it.
Be as it may, these themes make it a lot easier for both those beginners wishing to achieve accessibility, as well as professionals who need a head-start. You should not pass on the opportunity to use these features.
Your content needs to be easy to read. The easier – the better
There are simple and easy techniques to make sure your content is readable. First off, the most important thing is not to use small fonts. You want your fonts to be large enough, and very visible. Second, you don’t want to have large paragraphs of text. If you wish to create accessible WordPress websites, a lot of compressed text is never a way to go. Careful with the images as well, you don’t want to go overboard with them.
But, if we move away from formating, another very important thing is not to use big and complicated words. Potentially making both complex and hard to digest content will become obnoxious for your population of website visitors. The previous sentence is an example of an overcomplicated sentence that has nothing to look for in your website. The simpler the text – the higher the chance someone will actually bother reading it.
Create accessible WordPress websites by creating intuitive navigation menus
Rarely do you see that people achieve this. One would think that this is an easy objective to reach, but you’d be surprised at how many people actually fail. We never understood why, but it is so often that people try to overcomplicate their website navigation when this is supposed to be the simplest thing of them all. It needs to give access to every bit of the website and be easy to comprehend. That’s it! Everything past that is obnoxious and not necessary. However, people still tend to do it.
A common mistake is to think that simplifying things remove quality. Quite the contrary really. Simplifying content removes any probability of failure and provides the ultimate accessibility. Furthermore, this is something that will ensure that everyone will have a nearly equal chance to enjoy the content on your website. Complicated and complex is not necessarily high quality. Sometimes, it is just that – a complication. Besides, minimalism is making a huge comeback, so watch out for this new trend!
If you have any questions or doubts, feel free to contact us!