The DDA (Disability Discrimination Act) states that service providers must not discriminate against disabled people. A website is regarded as a service and therefore falls under this law, and as such must be made accessible to everyone. Some organizations are making accessibility improvements to their websites, but many are seemingly not making the accessibility adjustments. Disabled people don’t access their website, they say, so why should they care?
Why you should care about disabled Internet users
The statistics on the number of users who may face difficulties due to your website’s accessibility are quite startling:
- There are 56.7 million disabled people in the US – 18.7% of the population (source: 2010 US Census). That number has surely increased by this time.
- There are 7.3 million people who have a sight problem – over 2% of the total US population (source: NFB 2013)
- There are 41.5 million adults (Age 15+) who have physical disabilities – Over 13.5% of the Total US population (source: 2010 US census). That has also increased by now.
Although there is inevitably some overlap between the aforementioned groups, adding up these numbers provides a total of 34.2% of the US population that could potentially face problems with your website’s accessibility. That’s an extraordinarily high number.
- Users on slow connections regularly turn images off to enable a quicker download time. Some browsers, such as the text-only Lynx browser do not display images at all.
- Not every user has downloaded the latest Flash program that’s needed to access your site. Additionally, the download time on Flash websites often takes so long that users lose patience and don’t even wait to see the content.
Web Accessibility is complex and can be a complicated process, but it is also tantamount to your small business success. To uncover the blind spots in your web accessibility guidelines, you may want to enlist the help of qualified and competent professionals like us, Two Blind Marketers & Associates. We can be reached by phone at (575) 233-6355 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Call us today to meet with one of our web accessibility consultants!