WCAG: What it Means for Businesses Like Yours
This section explains WCAG and what it means for business owners. In simple terms, businesses must set up their websites so that people with disabilities can use the site and comprehend the content. Web developers need to code content so that text-to-speech software can translate it into an audio format for those with impaired vision.
To compensate for people with poor hearing, all videos must have text transcripts. Some people have conditions that stop them from using a mouse correctly. Ensuring websites are accessible by people who can't use a mouse requires the site to have keyboard commands that can perform all functions.
The Cost of Change
A lot of people hear about these laws and want to know how they can stay compliant with the ADA and WCAG. Since most business owners don't know how to code web content, they have to hire a developer to implement the updates. The amount it costs depends on a range of factors that professionals must consider as they move forward.
One of the most significant factors is the size of the website. While small websites can cost less than $100 to update, large sites can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Business owners will often compare the cost of gaining compliance with the cost of losing a legal battle.
Hiring a web developer to make the required changes to a website is a powerful step in the right direction, but it's not always enough for those who want the best results possible. Even experienced web developers can make mistakes that make websites vulnerable to legal action, leaving many professionals wondering what they should do. Those who don't want to take risks must hire a WCAG auditor or a web designer specializing in those guidelines.
These experts can review web content and make changes that prevent business professionals from finding themselves on the wrong side of the law. The steps might seem extreme to those who are learning about the regulations for the first time. Anyone who follows the news knows these lawsuits are becoming even more common, so the risk continues to grow for those who are not compliant.
WCAG is a new spin on the ADA, which was implemented in 1990. The ADA requires businesses to make accommodations that allow people with disabilities to get full enjoyment of their services. When the ADA translates to the modern world, it means that business websites must include features that allow those with disabilities and other challenges to using the content the same as anyone else.
Many businesses experts are still unaware of the law and don't learn about it until they find themselves facing fines and lawsuits. Gaining compliance often requires investing in web developers and WCAG auditors, but the cost is less than what a business would likely have to pay following a lawsuit.