Are you curious about how well your website performs for people with disabilities? Wondering if you’re meeting accessibility standards? This guide will teach you how to test your website for accessibility. We will cover everything from the basics of web accessibility to specific testing tools like accessiBe and other techniques. By following our tips, you can ensure that your website is accessible to everyone.
Why website accessibility is important
Web accessibility means that people with disabilities can use the web. This includes people who are blind, have low vision, are deaf, or have other physical or mental disabilities. It also includes people who do not speak English as their first language.
Making your website accessible is important because:
- It is the right thing to do. Everyone should have equal access to information and resources.
- It is good for business. By making your website accessible, you can reach a larger audience and improve your bottom line.
- It is required by law in some countries. In the United States, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires that all government websites be accessible.
How to test your website for accessibility
There are many ways to test your website for accessibility. Here are some of the most common:
Use a screen reader
This software program reads text aloud, allowing people who are blind or have low vision to use a computer. In addition, screen readers can be used with most web browsers.
There are many screen readers available, including:
- NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access) – free and open source
- JAWS (Job Access With Speech) – commercial software
- VoiceOver (built-in to macOS)
- TalkBack (built-in to Android)
Use a screen magnifier
This software program enlarges text and images, allowing people with low vision to use a computer. Screen magnifiers can be used with most web browsers.
Some popular screen magnifiers include:
- ZoomText – commercial software
- MAGic – commercial software
- ChromeVox – free and open-source extension for Google Chrome
- Firefox – built-in screen magnifier (Windows and Linux only)
Use a color contrast checker
This tool allows you to see how well the text and background colors on your website work together. For example, people with low vision often need high contrast colors to be able to read text.
The WebAIM Color Contrast Checker is a free online tool that can check the color contrast of your website.
Other accessibility testing tools
Many other tools can be used to test for web accessibility. Some of these are listed below:
- Accessibility Insights for Web – free extension for Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome
- WAVE – free online tool
- aXe – free, open-source engine
- Lighthouse – free, open-source auditing tool
After testing your website
Once you have tested your website, you may find that some things need to be fixed to make it more accessible. For example, you may need to add alt text to images or ensure that your color contrast is high enough.
Closing thoughts on accessibility
We hope that this guide has helped you understand more about web accessibility and how to test your website for accessibility. Remember, making your website accessible is important for everyone. By following our tips, you can make sure that your website is accessible to everyone.