Website compliance is essential to avoiding a lawsuit or government action. It is also vital in providing an equal opportunity for individuals to enjoy your goods and services whether they are disabled or not. With the passage of the ADA, most firms have made great strides to fill the gaps between web access and those looking for information.
But there is still a lot to be done to help individuals with disabilities access the information on the web. According to the ADA Compliant Standards for Business, website developers are stewards driving this change. Businesses need to understand that there is a lot of information and data passed over the web that each individual should have access to.
Early this year, ADA regulations became clear setting the deadline for sites to be compliant. It is high time for all website developers to take on the challenge of the web accessibility. Here is what you need to know about ADA compliance for websites.
What Does ADA Compliance Mean?
Americans with Disabilities Act compliance is about making components of your website and other applications accessible to everyone. For most individuals who design and develop websites, it is easier to develop a site with ADA compliance in mind than incorporating these components after the fact. This law prohibits any discrimination against those with disabilities in all areas of public life.
Who Needs to be Compliant?
Currently, any business that is considered a public accommodation need to have an ADA compliant site presence. Public accommodation applies to several things depending on the individual who is doing the interpretation. In most cases, this refers to retail, business to customer or any business that the general public need to use, access or understand easily.
The Main Levels of ADA Compliance
According to the ADA Compliant Standards for Business and the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, site accessibility is grouped into three main conformance levels: A, AA, and AAA. The higher the ADA compliance level, the better your site satisfies or meets the requirements and allows for excellent accessibility to users.
For your site to conform to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, you need to satisfy the following requirements:
- Level A which is about the use of color in conveying information, prompting a response, indicating an action and distinguishing a visual element. All business should understand that color is not only used as a visual means to convey this information.
- Level AA is about the contrast. The level indicates that the visual presentation of images and texts should have a contrast ratio of at least 4:5:1.
- The level AAA which is about satisfying all the other level requirements including A and AA.
The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines indicates that the level AAA is not required to be the general rule for the whole site since it is not possible to fulfill or satisfy all the Level AAA success standards for some of your content.