Usability and Navigation Issues
The US Government is considerably more advanced than the UK Government when it comes to website accessibility. It has put together a comprehensive set of guidelines that, whilst not perfect, are extremely thorough and offer detailed guidance on creating the best possible website experience for everyone, regardless of ability or disability. More on this may be found on their website, which you can reach by following this link. We always include these Guidelines in our accessibility audits because we are concerned with achieving best practice.
Although there are many things that can only be checked manually, applying these guidelines often brings up additional issues automatically. An example might be that the page does not have certain attributes defined and this means that different elements of the page jump about the screen as the page is loading. This can be very difficult for someone reading the text or clicking on a link whilst it is loading. Not everyone has a fast internet connection and if you are connected to a public Wifi network, the page load speed can be very slow indeed!
Another example might be that the text of a link may be so long that it goes onto the next line of the webpage. The difficulty with that is that it can be seen as two separate links, which can be confusing. The more of these guidelines that are met, the better the experience will be for everyone, regardless of ability or disability. If you have not seen it yet, have a look at the photo on our About page, which you can reach by following this link. This photograph of a shop in a town, with two heavy glass doors and one automatic door, explains the concept of accessible design brilliantly. An automatic door is an easy option but no-one is forced to go through and they are welcome to use the glass doors instead.
As a business or organisation, your website exists to inform your visitors what you do and how you may be of service to them. The easier you make it for anyone to find out what they want, the more likely they will stay on your website, have a positive experience and feel welcome.
If you would have any concerns around the usability and/or the navigation of your website, please get in touch with us for a free 15 minute consultation by following this link.