With CommonAccess Pro you can easily see how your website works with a screen reader. One of the most common issues users face with their website is that it wasn’t built with accessibility in mind. It takes a shift in thinking: How will a someone with little to no vision interact with my website?
Here are some writing tips on making your CommonAccess Pro website more accessible:
Put your most important information first.
What would be the main reason a person would be visiting your website? Try to reorganize the information in a way that would make sense to someone who is being read the material. Make sure the content flows in a way that makes sense. If your main website is constantly updated with new material, you will also need to remember to update your CommonAccess website as well.
Avoid Directional Language
Try to avoid writing anything that requires your website visitor to see what you have displayed on screen.
- Not Correct: "Choose your preference from the options at the top of the page."
- Correct: "Choose your preference from the options listed below." (With options listed directly below).
Write concisely, but not too concisely.
Think about what it would sound like to have your website read to you. Just like people with sight can experience “eye strain,” those with visual impairments can experience “ear strain.” Review your content and see if there is anything that can be shortened or said more concisely
Clarify your acronyms.
For people with sight, some acronyms are a no-brainer. However, there is no guarantee that a screen reader is going to pronounce the acronym correctly, or if the user will know what the acronym means. Spell out your acronyms to minimize confusion.
Avoid asterisks or parentheses.
Try to rewrite some of your content without the use of parentheses and asterisks. Very simple text like “(cat)” is read by a screen reader as: left parin cat right parin. And “**specials” is read: star star specials. This can be very confusing if it is read out loud, so try to remove them if possible.