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The Significance of WCAG Compliance for Enterprises: The impact of user experience!

By: Skynet Technologies USA LLC
8 mins
WCAG Compliance in Enterprise

“Many organizations are waking up to the fact that embracing accessibility leads to multiple benefits, reducing legal risks, strengthening brand presence, improving customer experience and colleague productivity.”

- Paul Smyth, Head of Digital Accessibility, Barclays

If a business is focusing on digital accessibility and integrating WCAG compliance in its digital assets, offers inclusive solutions to its customers. Such accessible enterprises reach more people and meet emerging global legal requirements. According to Fortune 100 companies, disability inclusion is a common practice among high-performing businesses.

Basically, enterprises are required to ensure their products are compliant, and to meet that requirement, they are expected to adhere to WCAG standards. When accessibility is a part of their strategic planning, enterprises are better connected with the whole world and equipped for success.

Let’s learn web accessibility for enterprises and real-world use cases.

Reasons why enterprises require to embrace WCAG compliance!

Web accessibility helps businesses to get some major areas covered that are:

  • Target larger audience

    1.3 billion people, which is 16% of global population suffer from disabilities as per WHO.

    Well, the numbers indicate why every business is focusing on web accessibility. No business can afford to lose such a vast TAM (Total Addressable Market), it was $484.70M in the year 2020 and is expected to reach $769.50M by 2028. Clearly, this value is growing at the CAGR (Compounded Annual Growth Rate) of 5.99% every year.

    Enterprises that have already focused on WCAG compliance are outperforming lately. We will see some examples later in this article.

  • Enhance brand recognition

    When businesses display their commitment to WCAG compliance, it reflects their inclusive approach to ensure that individuals with disabilities will access and engage with their content. This approach helps enterprises create a positive brand image and avoid lawsuit risks.

  • Increase awareness and avoid legal ramifications

    In the last few years, awareness of web accessibility has increased. Businesses are talking about it more than ever. Maybe one of the reasons is the rapidly rising web accessibility lawsuits that have doubled last year in 2023 since 2018. Thus, lawsuits are also a profound reason to focus on web accessibility.

WCAG compliance improves user experience and help enterprises grow leaps and bounds!

Implementing digital accessibility eliminates maximum architectural and other barriers that are the hinderances in the way of innovation and smooth interaction between an enterprise and its users. The flexibility of accessible designs is useful for users with disabilities because they can access all the features and perform their desired tasks easily. Thus, such interactions are human-centered, contextual, and natural, resulting in happier customers and increased conversions.

Accessibility aims to define and deliver an intuitive and innovative user experience like text-to-speech, voice controls, etc. Accessible designs can be rendered using a broad range of devices, assistive technologies, platforms, and operating systems. And to offer accessible designs to the target customers, enterprises are only required to adhere to WCAG compliance:

  • Alternative text – According to WCAG compliance, all images on the websites and apps must have alternative text. It helps visually impaired users to understand the context and content of images, which improves their user experience.
  • Navigation – Clear and consistent navigation is required for a website/app by WCAG. It is helpful for all users to find their desired content easily, which improves UX for everyone.
  • Keyboard accessibility – WCAG asks that websites should be accessible via keyboard alone as well. Because many users with motor disabilities cannot use a mouse thereby websites with keyboard only navigation improve users' experience for them.
  • Color Contrast – There is a defined guideline for website text and images' color contrast to make them easy to perceive. By adding proper color contrast to websites or apps, businesses improve their digital products' accessibility for color-blind users.
  • Video captions and audio descriptions – As per WCAG compliance, videos on websites must have captions and audio descriptions to make them accessible for users with hearing disabilities.

And there are various other guidelines to ensure digital accessibility for everybody. A web accessibility partner can help implementing specific guidelines to improve web accessibility level of an organization.

Real-world examples of thriving enterprises!

Some enterprises have shown amazing growth after implementing WCAG compliance in their digital assets.

  1. Apple

    Apple made profound efforts to create its products WCAG-compliant. They now have a dedicated accessibility team to focus on the accessibility of their digital products. A wide range of features are added to Apple’s products to ensure their accessibility for users with disabilities like VoiceOver and Siri.

    This inclusion helped the company to earn customer loyalty and improve its brand reputation. Additionally, Apple’s efforts towards web accessibility broaden its market reach and share.

  2. Target

    Target Corporation encountered a lawsuit in 2008 alleging that some visually impaired customers were not able to access its website. Thus, under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the National Federation of the Blind filed the lawsuit. However, Target settled the case in 2009 by paying $6 million in damages to the plaintiffs and agreeing on the condition of making its website accessible.

    After the lawsuit happened, Target ensured that its website and mobile app are WCAG compliant. The company worked on keyboard navigation, ARIA landmarks, and alt texts, that improved its website’s user experience for everyone. Accessibility brought increased web traffic and revenue for Target.

  3. Bank of America

    Bank of America faced litigation in 2010 about the inaccessibility of its website and mobile app. The lawsuit was filed by the National Federation of the Blind alleging that the bank’s website and app violated the ADA guidelines.

    They paid a hefty $12 million to settle the case and began working on website and mobile app accessibility. Since then, Bank of America has prioritized digital accessibility and implemented myriad accessibility features to their digital products such as alt tags, ARIA landmarks, various assistive technology compatibility, etc.

  4. A gourmet grocery store from San Diego (one of our clients)

    They were facing lawsuits due to several ADA compliance issues, and they reached out to us to remediate their website as per ADA/WCAG requirements. We, as their accessibility partner, audited their website and created a remediation plan in accordance with WCAG 2.1 level AA conformance.

In a nutshell,

“Designing inclusive software results in improved usability and customer satisfaction.”

- Microsoft’s app developer guide

Accessibility is no longer a novelty; it is an integrated and crucial aspect of modern life. Enterprises that understand the need for a digital world for all, include accessibility into their development and procurement processes. Apple, Barclays, Microsoft, and myriad other business leaders are live examples of how web accessibility impacts business growth positively.

More than 1 billion people with disabilities are eager to connect with businesses as their customers, employees, partners, and clients provided they feel welcomed. Thus, create an inclusive digital environment for all and be a reason behind a positive impact on many lives!

Skynet Technologies is a leading provider of comprehensive digital solutions for enterprises, and their commitment to website accessibility aligns with their ethos of inclusivity and innovation. By prioritizing WCAG compliance, we ensure that enterprise websites are accessible to all users, including those with disabilities. We recognize the significance of adhering to WCAG guidelines, not just for legal compliance but also for enhancing user experience. Their approach to enterprise website accessibility involves thorough audit, strategic planning, website accessibility remediation , consulting, document remediation, VPAT, self-assistance training, ongoing monitoring, and support that cater to diverse user needs. Request a quote or reach out [email protected].