Is your website ADA Compliant for 2020? It should be.
In the U.S.A. and Florida in particular, countless business websites fail to keep up with WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Even in 2020, we see websites and businesses suffer from a lack of focus or attention given to these fundamental government-set guidelines. In this confusing world of ours, where federal law collides with technology output, knowing the limits of what you should, or should not be doing, is complicated and extensive work for business owners with an online presence.
Is my business website compliant? A quick overview:
Since the number of new laws regarding ADA, the existing law is vaguely worded and complicated to filter yourself. Website compliance has been limited it’s often difficult to identify if your site fits within the lawful limits.
However complicated, the best rule of thumb is this: If your business offers a service or product, being compliant is the safest bet to avoid possible lawsuits.
Of course, every situation and business is different and we intend to treat it that way. However, if you are still concerned whether or not your website is required to follow ADA laws and compliance, let’s get in touch and send us a message below.
- Complimentary call to discuss if your website requires ADA compliance
- Full-service renovation for your business website
- Consulting and education to web developers staying ADA compliant
- Assisting with creating a new ADA compliant website
- Maintaining and increasing search optimization for ADA websites
“526 Federal ADA Title III Website Accessibility Lawsuits were filed in Florida Federal courts in 2019” – Seyfarth ADA Title III Specialty Team Attorneys
According to the ADA Title III compliance blog written by Seyfarth ADA attorneys, 526 Federal ADA Title III Website Accessibility Lawsuits were filed in the state of Florida in 2019 alone. That number averages out to at least 1 lawsuit is filed in Federal court every day, just in Florida! The number of ADA Website Compliance lawsuits filed in state and county courts is harder to determine but are still estimated to be high numbers, simply because many business owners aren’t aware their business website needs to be accessible by their visitors, whether deaf, blind, or in any way handicapped. Why? It’s simple: people with disabilities are just like those without disabilities – we all value our independence.
The solution for ADA Website Compliance is not as cut and dry as you’d think. Considering 1 in 4 Americans are disabled, you could be unintentionally eliminating a quarter of your website’s visitors and in turn, their opportunity to buy from you!
Stay alert and stay vigilant, many consulting agencies and law firms charge tens of thousands of dollars to make a website ADA compliant. The reality is, in many cases website ADA compliance isn’t that complicated. We are happy to consult with you, your web developers, or your team to see if making your website ADA compliant is worth the time and money.
Why Your Website Should Follow Accessibility Guidelines
The ADA became a law in the United States in 1990 and prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. From navigating the public and private sector world to living through day-to-day life, the ADA protects those that need protection.
In January 2018, some new regulations began taking effect. These new laws regulate every business website that provides commerce, services or products. They state that each website must meet the guidelines listed in WCAG 2.0.
What does ADA Compliance mean for your business?
Because the precedent is changing and ADA compliance lawsuits seem to be winning more and more, being compliant is more important than ever. Title III of the ADA compliance laws pertains to both offline and online private businesses. Lately and more than ever, we’ve seen these protections expanding into the digital territory as apps and the internet gain awareness as a necessary part of life for individuals living with disabilities.
Who needs to be ADA compliant?
The general rule of thumb is that any business considered a “public accommodation” should have an ADA compliant website.
“Public accommodation” applies and depends on whoever is making the interpretation. That’s what makes this field of law so important to understand. Since it is up to interpretation, it’s important that any B2C (business to customer) website is easy to access and follows the guidelines set forth by the government. Whether a retail website, hotel, restaurant, professional service, or any other business that deals with the public, ADA guidelines should be met.
10 Tips: How to Stay in Compliance with ADA/WCAG Regulations
- Look over the newest WCAG 2.0 (Website Content Accessibility Guidelines) from w2.org
- Organize your content based on it’s priority, with highest priority content displaying first
- Make sure your website’s images have alternative text tags, descriptive of the images they portray
- Having a font sizing function to increase your website’s font if the reader has eyesight issues
- Make sure your website is completely functional on mobile devices, as well as tablet and desktop computers
- Evaluate your website’s front-end code to ensure that it’s completely functional
- The website must be able to operate from the use of only a keyboard, in cases where a user is unable to use a mouse
- Make your content readable: separate subjects with paragraphs, add headers when appropriate
- Choose colors that balance in contrast (black lettering on a white background, for example)
- Choose a font that is easy to read, like Open Sans, Georgia, or Helvetica
ADA Website Compliance is just part of what we do at Custom Design Partners.
While you do your best to run your business, let us do what we do best,
develop your website to include ADA compliance and site optimization.