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Website Accessibility and SEO

It's estimated that over one billion people, accounting for around 15 percent of the world's population, live with some form of disability. Each of them represents a potential client whose businesses might lose due to the lack of accessibility and inclusivity on their websites. By making accessibility a standard feature of their online platforms, brands not only fulfill their ethical obligations but also stand to enhance their SEO significantly, thereby expanding their reach and boosting their business potential on a massive scale. Moreover, there's a pressing need for websites to adhere to local legal compliance requirements and guidelines, such as the ADA in the USA, the Equality Act 2010 in the UK, and the WED in the EU.


Website accessibility and SEO

Let's take a look at what it means for a website to be accessible. Developed by the W3C* - The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) ensure websites are accessible to all users, regardless of abilities. WCAG offers standards and success criteria for creating inclusive digital content.


Its four principles are:

Perceivable: Information and user interface components must be presentable to users in ways they can perceive.


Operable: User interface components and navigation must be operable.


Understandable: Information and the operation of the user interface must be understandable.


Robust: Content must be robust enough that it can be interpreted reliably by a wide variety of user agents, including assistive technologies.


WCAG promotes inclusivity and user-centered design, benefiting site owners and SEO efforts by enhancing usability and demonstrating a commitment to accessibility. For SEOs, focusing on areas of overlap such as alt text, headers, and anchor text presents immediate opportunities for improvement.


Shall we broaden our perspective to consider how accessibility practices (for content and website building overall) can significantly impact SEO?


  • Embrace responsive design for seamless user experience across devices

  • Create a clear and consistent navigation menu for an intuitive user experience

  • Use descriptive anchor text for meaningful and informative links providing users with clear expectations for the linked web page

  • Ensure readability for all users by selecting high-contrast color combinations, prioritizing accessibility for those with visual impairments or color deficiencies

  • Opt for clear and straightforward language when creating content to ensure it is easy to understand.

  • Include alt text for images to ensure accessibility for those users relying on screen readers or with visual impairments

  • Utilize descriptive headers and subheaders to organize content for easy navigation and comprehension, aiding users in quickly finding relevant information

  • Avoid relying solely on color to convey information on your website, as this may exclude users who are colorblind or have visual impairments


*The World Wide Web Consortium is a widely recognized organization that develops standards to help people build websites based on sound accessibility, internationalization, privacy, and security principles.

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