I want to develop a more accessible website. What do I do?

“I want to develop a website that’s more accessible!”

There’s a wide variety of articles and how-tos on how to make a website or a blog more accessible to people with disabilities. This page offers a sample of some of them, along with some tools that can help.

WebAIM has a Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool. Putting a url into their tool will give you some idea of what sort of accessibility errors someone using a screen reader may encounter using your site. This won’t give you everything, but it can give you some insight into what may be making your website difficult for some users.

How to add subtitles and translations to videos. Useful for video bloggers, although I recommend also providing a transcription.

Readings on Accessible Web Design:

The Inclusion Principle: It is crucial that the designer can identify with the accessibility requirements of a project. Where this is not the case, there is no enthusiasm, and without enthusiasm we are back at our old ways—marginalizing accessibility tasks.

Section 508: “The information below includes resources developed and maintained by The IT Accessibility & Workforce Division, as well as external sites that link you with resources and tools.”

How To Make Your Website More Accessible [Written in 2008]: “One of the biggest mistakes I see from web designers is making accessibility more complicated than it actually is. Most designers think of creating accessible content as something that will take weeks of exaggerated tagging, designing tab-browsing and hot keys for every minute function of a site, and writing over-descriptive metadata, so most people just give up and don’t even bother. However, by using some simple techniques and following some basic guidelines, you can make your website accessible to a wide audience of users without spending too much time and energy.”

Dive Into Accessibility is a comprehensive resource with ample notes on specific accommodations for particular disabilities. It includes discussions of different types of browsers and publishing tools.