“Digital information is the great equalizer of our time, and access to it is a game changer. However, when access is impeded, millions are excluded.” Todd Bankofier, Chief Executive Officer, AudioEye
This is a great quote. It is true. Digital technology is opening doors and offering access to everything that is out there, and for the first time the playing field is being leveled by accessibility technology. Making products, content and services accessible to people with disabilities is an integral part of business today. In fact, it has become imperative for success in any industry. When you realize that an inaccessible website could exclude 15% of the world’s population, it can easily become all about money.
Providing everyone with equal access to what you have to offer is simply the right thing to do. Every company’s approach to digital accessibility should be that it is a part of its business model, public brand perception and mission statement.
The benefits of accessibility work both ways. The people who need it are able to contribute their own unique perspectives about their needs, and with a greater diversity of perspectives the market becomes broader to provide a bigger variety of goods and services for sale. Meeting the needs of as many people as possible is always good business.
In current litigation arising from the lack of accessibility in certain online transactions and interactions, it is being determined that in essence it’s just as discriminatory to prevent certain customers from conducting online transactions as it is would be if you physically prevented them from entering your front doors. Allowing accessibility barriers to permeate your website is comparable to dismantling or blocking the wheelchair ramp at the entrance of a building.
There is so much good information available from various companies that specialize in Accessibility. Interactive Accessibility is a woman-owned consulting organization that specializes in accessible websites, web applications, documents, and mobile applications. Their blog has a lot of interesting information
Essential Accessibility is another company offering accessibility services, and their website has good information.
People with disabilities deserve a complete digital experience and there is a lot of help available to help them get it.