Digital Products, Accessible for Everyone

A digital product is accessible when it’s usable by everyone, regardless of any disability they may have. As the inventor of the internet, Tim Berners-Lee, states “The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.” As web developers that’s something we value and work for.

4 ways accessibility can improve your business

Aside from it being the right thing to do, there’s also a clear business case for making your digital product accessible:

  1. Extend your market reach

    One billion people, or 15% of the world’s population, experience some form of disability (according to The World Bank). Many of those struggle to use digital products on a daily basis. You can make a quick calculation of how many more people you could reach with your product in your market. Imagine how much you’d need to spend on advertising to achieve those numbers.

  2. Strengthen your brand identity

    A brand’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) is valued more and more these days. Making your product accessible shows your devotion to DE&I is sincere and makes your brand stand out.

  3. Boost innovation in your organisation

    The telephone, the typewriter, email, text-to-speech and voice controls were all inventions initially meant to include people with a disability. Bell was motivated to help his deaf mother communicate with his wife, Turri to type letters to his blind lover, and so on. Imagine what embracing accessibility could do to spark innovation in your organisation.

  4. Minimise your legal risk

    If the points above aren’t enough of an incentive, risk management very well might be. In the EU digital products need to comply with the new European Accessibility Act (EAA), the USA has the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and many countries have their own policies for accessibility. So making your products accessible mitigates your legal and thereby your financial risk.

a woman typing with a simulation glove on a laptop
A men presenting next to a screen that says 'masterclass digitale toegankelijkheid'

How is your business doing in accessibility right now?

Measuring impact

Guidelines for making digital products accessible are well established. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) is an international standard that clearly describes principles, testable success criteria and techniques to make products accessible. We follow these guidelines while developing a product and to measure and review their accessibility. The WCAG principles in short:

  • Perceivable. Information and user interface components must be presentable to users in ways they can perceive  (it can’t be invisible to all of their senses).

  • Operable. User interface components and navigation must be operable (the interface cannot require interaction that a user cannot perform).

  • Understandable. Information and the operation of the user interface must be understandable (the content or operation cannot be beyond their understanding).

  • Robust. Content must be robust enough that it can be interpreted reliably by a wide variety of user agents, including assistive technology (as technologies and user agents evolve, the content should remain accessible).

If a product’s top 5 pages have a WCAG score of 95% or higher, we consider it committed to making it accessible for everyone.

A desk with a laptop on it where a color a screenfilter is active. On top of the keyboard are simulation gloves. Next to the laptop are lying simulation glasses.
Our physical accessibility testing kit
Our website with a color filter applied to simulate visual impairments
Our virtual accessibility testing kit

Making an impact on accessibility

Make accessibility your business

As described above, making your digital product accessible extends your market reach, strengthens your brand, boosts innovation in your organisation and helps minimise legal risk. By aligning accessibility with these business goals and your KPI’s you make accessibility part of your business. Growing your audience becomes a lot easier when you include people with a disability.

Embed accessibility in your digital teams

Once it’s part of your business, you can make the accessibility principles part of your processes, from user stories, to designs, into development and product demos. Accessibility issues often occur by not knowing about them. So educating your team about accessibility is important. Every team memberhas a role to play. And of course it helps to hire someone with a disability.

Test and review accessibility regularly

To ensure your product is and remains accessible it’s important to test it. Part of this can be done with tools, checklists and some tests can be automated. The WCAG-EM method helps to do a complete test. Yet nothing beats testing with real users with a disability. When your product is fully accessible you can have it accredited (in Dutch “Waarmerk Drempelvrij”). 

Up to 10% impact discount

We’d love to help you make an impact. If you commit to making your digital product accessible for everyone, you’re eligible for our impact discount. Want to know more?

Contact us for more information

Our specialists can make your digital product accessible. Discover the possiblities in a meeting.