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How do I make a link ADA compliant?

The best practices for making hyperlinks ADA compliant include adding additional attributes to the link markup, such as a title, a role, and a target. Additionally, the visible link text should describe the link itself, not just say “click here.” Since colorblind users may not be able to perceive color cues, present links with underlines or other non-color style indicators. If you have an image functioning as a link, you must include alt text which conveys the location and purpose of the link, not which describes the image. Treat image links as links, not as images. 

Consider the following examples:

Non-compliant link:

<a href=”http://example.com”>CLICK HERE</a>

Compliant link:

<a href=”http://example.com” target=”_blank” title=”Example Link” role=”link” style=”cursor:pointer; text-decoration:underline; color:red;”>Example Link</a>

Where can I find a compliance website checklist?

A good place to start is by reviewing the opens in a new windowWCAG standards. This guide gives the full compliance list, and techniques for how to fix any issues your website has. To find the problems your website has in the first place, there are a large number of services you can use; from automated subscriptions, to one-time scans, to continuously scanning plugins or modules, to browser extensions. To learn more about these testing methods, read “Best Ways to Test Website Accessibility; Easy, yet Comprehensive!”.

How do I test a website for 508 compliance?

The term “508 compliance” is shorthand referring to requiring federal government websites to be safe and accessible for people with disabilities. opens in a new windowSection 508 is an amendment to the United States Workforce Rehabilitation Act of 1973 mandating that all electronic and information technology developed, procured, maintained, or used by the federal government must be accessible to people with disabilities. 

To meet 508 standards, any audio or video files your website uses must include closed captioning, a text transcript, or other accommodations. Additionally, your website must be compatible with screen readers, and keyboard-only navigable. To learn more about testing your website for compliance, check out our article “Best Ways to Test Website Accessibility; Easy, yet Comprehensive!”.

What is meant by AA and AAA accessibility conformance?

WCAG guidelines are organized into three successive level of compliance: A, AA, and AAA. AAA is the most stringently compliant and difficult to obtain. Each successive level is progressively harder to meet, and each level of conformance indicates having met all of the criteria for the previous levels as well. There are 25 criteria which you must meet to reach level A. For level AA, you must meet 13 additional requirements. Level AAA requires compliance with 23 additional criteria. 

If your website meets level A, the majority of users will be able to use your website. Each additional level and criterion met makes your site accessible to more and more people. The level you should aim for as a business is AA, which is the level that’s legally required for certain types of sites, and the one that is typically referred to when you’re tasked with “making a website accessible/ADA compliant.”

What is the WCAG 2.0 standard?

WCAG is a set of guidelines for making web content more accessible to people with disabilities. In other words, it’s not a law, but it does give you some specific criteria which will be helpful for accommodating users across a wide range of disabilities. WCAG is developed through the opens in a new windowW3C process, with the goal of providing an international shared standard of meeting these needs. 

The four principles of WCAG compliance are that your web content is perceivableusers must be able to perceive the information being presented whether through sight, hearing, or touch; operational – do all of the navigable components of your website work? Are there any elements which require interaction that all users cannot perform?; understandable – the information presented and the method of operating your website must be easily understood; and robust – the content must be able to be reliably interpreted and used by most common assistive technologies.

To read more about the WCAG 2.0 AA accessibility standards, read our “A Quick Primer on the WCAG 2.0 Accessibility Standard.

What are accessibility standards?

Accessibility standards are a universally agreed-upon set of guidelines which make a website usable by people with various disabilities. This includes those who are blind, colorblind, with limited physical mobility, with seizure disorders, and more.

Many of those with disabilities use assistive technologies to surf the internet, so bringing your website up to ADA compliance means in great part that your website is compatible with these technologies. Common assistive technologies include screen readers, refreshable Braille displays, text-to-speech outputs, etc. Your website will also need to be navigable via keyboard only, among other concerns.

How much does it cost to make a website ADA compliant?

The cost varies according to the size, purpose, and complexity of your website, whether or not your site leverages a lot of video or audio content (which would need to be reviewed and brought into compliance), what the firm you’ve hired to handle your compliancy audit and rework is charging, and many other factors. 

The cost of bringing your website into ADA compliance will be much less than the cost of a lawsuit if you’re found non-compliant. The consequences can include fines, monetary damages, court fees, attorney’s fees, and settlements; not to mention the hit your company will take to its reputation, which may negatively affect your customer base and sales. Nobody wants to be perceived as being discriminatory against the disabled!

How do I protect myself from an ADA compliance lawsuit?

By ensuring that your website adheres to opens in a new windowWCAG 2.0 AA standards, at the very least. To read more about the WCAG 2.0 AA accessibility standard, check out our “Quick Primer on the WCAG Accessibility Standard.”

How do you fix accessibility?

If you’re in the designing stages of your website yourself, design with an eye to ADA compliance and accessibility. That way, you won’t potentially be paying to have your site designed twice if this is overlooked! If you need a redesign, contact us and we’ll build in ADA compliance for you.

If you already own a website, we can review it for ADA compliancy standards, since we’re a web design firm that specializes in such concerns. It’s important to hire a firm like ours which employs a manual review process in addition to an automated one – many automated ADA compliance detectors and auditors miss key elements, which would prevent you from becoming fully ADA compliant.

How do I know if my website is ADA compliant?

There are easy ways to test whether your website meets ADA requirements, and many things you can do at relatively low-cost to ensure that you’re meeting your customers’ needs. Primarily, your content needs to be user-friendly and easy to understand, and your website’s UI (User Interface) needs to be compatible with common assistive technologies. This means easily navigable using tools such as screen readers, or by keyboard-only navigation.

Read more about testing your website for ADA requirements.

Does a website have to be ADA compliant?

Yes! Any website which does business in the United States is legally required to provide equal accessibility to all. To learn more about whether or not your website is required to be ADA compliant, read our article on “Is Your Website Required to be ADA Compliant? Any Exceptions?

Although it is rare for a personal website to be sued over lack of accessibility, it can be a major concern for a business. Moreover, if you address accessibility concerns, you’re taking steps to ensure that your website is open to everyone, you’re attracting new clientele, and you’re showing your visitors and customers that you care. It may surprise you to learn that according to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 61 million people, or a quarter of the adult American population, live with some kind of disability.

What is website ADA compliance?

Website ADA compliance means that your website adheres to legal accessibility standards, meaning that it can be easily used by individuals with disabilities. Website ADA compliance means that not only is your content user-friendly and easy to understand, that it is available via sight, hearing, and/or touch. It also means that your UI (User Interface) is operable and compatible with common assistive equipment. As technologies and platforms evolve, your website needs to evolve with it and remain operable on assistive technologies.

What if my website is not ADA compliant?

The ADA tells us that all public spaces should be accessible to everyone, which includes some digital spaces and those accessible via the internet. You could face a lawsuit if a person with a disability claims that they are unable to access your website. This can result in legal fees, a potential settlement, a potential public relations problem, and the cost of rebuilding your website to be ADA-compliant, not to mention the potential for damage to your company’s reputation.


ADA Compliance is complicated. Thrive can help.

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