The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a set of laws developed in 1990. This act was created to make certain people with disabilities have the accommodations they need to work and use public services. While the internet as we know it didn’t exist in 1990, today the ADA expands to include websites and even mobile apps. In fact, Title III of the ADA made an official standard of website accessibility. This means there is little excuse for a website owner to get by with a website that inhibits people with disabilities from accessing all elements of the site.
What you may not realize is that having an ADA compliant website is beneficial to a business in many ways. We’ve put together four of the ways improving ADA web accessibility may impact you the most:
1. You Reach a Larger Target Audience
One of the most immediate benefits your business will see when you make your website ADA friendly is that your target audience increases. According to Adata.org, approximately 54 million Americans have a disability.¹ Having a website that is set up to make browsing, buying and communicating easier for this large section of consumers will give you more possible customers. In addition, simply by having a site that is accessible, you improve your reputation in the disabled community.
2. ADA Compliance Improves Your SEO
SEO or search engine optimization is one of the most important marketing tools a website can use. Put simply, it means optimizing your website to work better with the search engines, which in turn makes your website appear higher on organic web searches. Today, the major search engines (such as Google and Bing) take into account whether or not a website is ADA compliant when determining how they rank in searches. In fact, Google provides a built-in set of tools to help you see how your site ranks and how you can improve that rank—ADA compliance is a major part of this.²
3. Following ADA Regulations Helps You Avoid Penalties
Frustratingly, today you could find yourself facing penalties if you do not have a site that is accessible to all visitors—including those with disabilities. The penalty for such a violation can be up to $150,000 (for a second violation.) The cost to make a website compliant is much less expensive than the penalties which can be assessed for non-compliance.³
4. Your Site Will Be More Accessible to ALL Visitors
While making a website accessible for people with disabilities makes the site easier for that audience to use your website, good accessibility is beneficial to nearly everyone. A site that is accessible to people with disabilities will likely be easier to read, navigate and enjoy by all visitors.
Now that you know how beneficial it is to have an ADA compliant website, perhaps you would like some assistance in bringing your site up to date in this area. Request a demo from eSSENTIAL Accessibility today and let us show you how easy it is to make your website compliant, accessible and fully functional for all visitors—including people with disabilities.