Digital accessibility means designing your website(s) and application(s) such that they can be used by all users, regardless of ability. More specifically, it refers to ensuring your digital offerings can be used by persons with disabilities.
Accessibility is extremely important for business owners to be aware of, since the unfortunate truth is that many web developers are not. For most, accessibility is an afterthought - "we'll just add a widget at the end of development and not worry about it" - but the risks (and rewards) are far too great to warrant this attitude. The benefits of making your website(s) and application(s) accessible boil down to the following:
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 61 million adults in the US live with a disability. These persons with disabilities have a total after-tax disposable and discretionary income of about $490 billion, according to the American Institutes for Research. That is a huge market that many companies are not tapping into, as these potential customers cannot access the companies' website(s) and app(s).
Denying persons with disabilities access to goods and services by not having an accessible website or application is akin to discriminating against any other protected group. The Americans with Disabilities Act, as well as State- and Local-level laws strictly prohibit such discrimination on the basis of disability.
Companies that have inaccessible digital offerings face the very real risk of being sued. According to Usablenet, there was a 23% increase in accessibility-related litigation in 2020 (3,550 total cases). It's important to note that it is not just "big box" retailers facing the risk of litigation anymore. More and more small- and medium-sized businesses are being sued for non-conformant websites. A class action suit was filed against wineries right here on Long Island, not too long ago. This shows that all business owners - regardless of size or industry sector - must be aware of accessibility.
LI Tech Advisors has an in-house team of Certified Professionals in Web Accessibility (CPWA) who can train your development team and assist in remediation. LI Tech Advisors has a thorough knowledge of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), the standards and guidelines relating to building accessible websites and applications. We specialize in training development team members in the many facets of accessibility and the considerations which need to be taken into account to ensure successful implementation. LI Tech Advisors is also experienced in acting as a "help desk" of sorts, so clients can ask us questions and get quick reviews of what they are working on, in real time.
We have years of experience acting as the quality assurance team for clients large and small, and helping these clients ingrain accessibility into their core processes. We are always happy to have a discussion regarding accessibility and how taking action today can benefit you tomorrow, and beyond.
For information regarding our ongoing efforts and commitment to accessibility, visit our Accessibility Statement page.