Here are some of the things you should know about the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and how it can affect your website. We’ll cover the importance of ADA compliance and why you need to comply.
Should small businesses be concerned about ADA?
The primary reason why ADA compliance is a concern for small businesses is that if your website is incompliant, you could be sued for discrimination. Major companies, like the supermarket empire, Winn-Dixie, have been sued for not accommodating customers with impaired vision. Many businesses have suffered substantial losses in litigation over ADA compliance, and the litigious trend is rising. As recently as 2018, there were over 1,000 lawsuits associated with website compliance.
Why it pays to have an ADA compliant website
Another reason why having an ADA compliant website is imperative is that an overwhelming 91% of customers prefer buying from websites that feature web accessibility.
One of the concepts enshrined by the ADA is that disabled individuals should be granted equal enjoyment of goods and services. If your website doesn’t feature web accessibility, you’ll be blocking out a potentially lucrative customer base. There are over 61 million disabled persons in the United States alone. Each of those individuals is a potential customer, meaning it literally pays to accommodate.
For small businesses in Canada and the United States, those numbers represent opportunities for new customers. When you’re working hard to build your brand, every customer counts, and if you remember that after you’re off the ground, you’ll do even better.
Keeping your website up to date improves your brand’s image, not to mention helps to protect you from being sued for being incompliant with the ADA.
What’s the best way to make your website ADA compliant?
Now that you know how urgent it is to be ADA compliant, one question remains, how to make it happen. In short, the answer is, leave it to the professionals. Our team of experienced professionals has been optimizing websites for years, so making your website ADA compliant is something we can do for you – either in a new website build, or by updating your current site.
There was a movement a few years ago that recommended browser detection to see if a site visitor was using one of the many screen-readers, and then redirecting them to a screen-reader-friendly version. Two strong arguments against simply detecting screen readers are revolved around development and privacy. Coding a website to detect screen-readers has been flagged as a privacy concern and is uncomfortably similar to the ill-advised practice of browser-sniffing. From the developer’s standpoint, adding the additional separate channels of code would be overwhelming, and from a content management perspective, maintaining two separate sites is impractical.
The smart thing to do is to have your website designed to accommodate everyone without turning it into a developer’s nightmare.
New businesses should incorporate ADA compliance into their websites from the get-go. Existing businesses should plan to become ADA compliant by the next iteration of their site. The sooner you get on it, the better. All it takes is one customer with an ambitious lawyer to give you an expensive headache.
Don’t just comply with ADA, profit from it with Time2GetOnline
Your website is the face of your business, so give it a good one with Time2GetOnline. It all starts with a free site evaluation. From there, we’ll ensure that your website is smooth, stylish, and accessible. That means you won’t have to worry about ADA; you’ll just have to worry about how to handle all those new customers.
Have a chat with Time2GetOnline and ask about becoming ADA compliant. We make websites easy.
Written by Harrison Stone Bryan, Professional Copywriter
Harrison is an experienced writer and marketing connoisseur. He works with some of the most innovative names in business and is interested in the relationship between marketing and psychology.