Each month I will be responding to a question; chosen from a pool of some of
the most commonly asked ones that I have been asked over the years and
continue to be asked.
This month, I’d like to answer the following question:
How to make online shopping more accessible.
The trick here is to ensure that your online shopping facility is easy to
access, easy to navigate and one that visitors will return to time and time
again. No; it is not just about cute colors, snazzy images, and great
graphics! If you really wish to make your online shopping facility
accessible and nagigable, then I have some suggestions for you.
1. Make sure that your forms are easy to complete. That is, that your
fields are clearly identifiable and that they are easy to fill in.
2. Make sure that you clearly explain your products; not just through
pictures and graphics but also through the use of text that is easy to
understand and that it is written in plain and simple language.
3. Make full use of alt text to clearly describe graphics and icons.
4. Provide alternate texts of down loadable files in such formats as Txt,
Doc, HTML, and accessible PDF.
5. Make sure that your content is easy to access and easy to read.
6. Provide appropriate messages to let the person know if their transactions
have either been successfully completed or if they have failed and give
reasons and suggestions as to why they have failed and how to correct the
7. Provide suitable contrasts in foreground and background and make sure
that your fonts are easy to read.
8. Finally; employ accessibility testers to test for accessibility. One of
the most common pitfalls is that too many companies fail to hire persons
with disabilities to test choosing instead to hire regular testers.
This should be a good start for you.