In today’s world, websites are no longer just an extra perk for businesses. They have become an essential tool for small businesses to reach more customers and grow their brand. However, while most businesses focus on creating functional and aesthetically pleasing websites, they often forget the importance of website accessibility. Many website owners still assume that accessibility is only for those with disabilities, but whilst that is very important, it goes beyond that. In this blog post, we’ll explore why website accessibility matters for small businesses.
Increases Customer Base
In today’s digital age, it’s easy to overlook the fact that not everyone uses technology the same way. For instance, individuals with visual or hearing impairments require assistive technologies to access websites. By making your website accessible to everyone, you expand your customer base beyond your intended target audience. When your website is accessible for everyone, you can cater to a wider audience that may have previously been excluded.
Enhances Your Reputation
Accessibility tells your potential customers that your business is mindful of their needs. Proper website accessibility is not only essential for people with disabilities but is essential for everyone who visits your website. By creating an accessible website, you demonstrate that your business is committed to providing a positive experience for your customers. It also shows that you care about the online community and strive to create a more inclusive environment.
Boosts Your SEO
When building a website, one of the essential factors to consider is search engine optimisation (SEO). Having an accessible website can improve your SEO, which in turn can increase your website traffic. Search engines like Google use algorithms that prioritise websites that are easily navigable and straightforward to access. Websites that have features like alternative text descriptions and captioning on videos increase their likelihood of ranking higher on search engines, which can lead to more customers finding your business.
Avoid Legal Issues
Accessibility is also a compliance issue for many businesses. In the UK, the Equality Act 2010 requires businesses to ensure that customers do not experience discrimination when using their services. This includes making reasonable adjustments to your website and online services to ensure that everyone can use them. By ignoring accessibility, you are potentially exposing your business to legal issues that could be costly and tarnish your reputation.
Accessible website design is user-friendly design. When you design your website with accessibility in mind, you create a pleasant user experience for everyone who visits. That’s because accessible websites have clear, concise navigation and easy-to-understand language. Improved usability ensures that users can find what they’re looking for quickly and efficiently which produces a positive experience. Customers who have a positive experience on your website are more likely to become repeat customers and recommend your business to others.
Having an accessible website is not only essential for those with disabilities, but it also ensures that your website is user-friendly for everyone. By making your website accessible, you’ll improve your SEO, expand your customer base, enhance your reputation, avoid legal issues and improve usability. It’s a win-win situation that every small business owner should consider when building or updating their website. Remember, accessibility is a proactive investment for your business.
If you are looking for a web agency to help ensure your website is accessible then get in contact.