Accessibility for eCommerce Sellers

accessibility tools

The world of business is notoriously cut-throat, and it can be a constant challenge to stay ahead. No business owner hasn’t struggled at some point, and this can lead to a lot of stress. 

Unfortunately, many business owners aren’t prepared to deal with the pressure and eventually close their doors. Small business owners often struggle the most with the switch to eCommerce, and they’re even more likely to suffer the consequences. 

The challenge of owning and managing a business is even more difficult for people with disabilities, especially the visually impaired. And since the 2020 pandemic, there’s been an increasingly strong push to transition to eCommerce businesses. As you can imagine, this can be even more of a challenge for them than running your standard brick and mortar stores. 

Disabled business owners aren’t the only ones struggling. Many people suffering from a disability have trouble finding workplaces willing to accommodate their needs. Many businesses are switching to eCommerce and that can make things difficult for the visually impaired. It’s important for business owners to make their eCommerce resources more accessible for both shoppers and employees. 

Managing an eCommerce Business as Someone with a Visual Impairment

There are many business owners out there living with a visual impairment, and they’re all too familiar with the frustrations of an inaccessible online world. If you’re a visually impaired eCommerce owner, don’t give up on finding ways to make things easier for yourself. 

As eCommerce evolves, so does accessibility technology. Many tools and resources are becoming more available to make the internet more accessible for the visually impaired. Voice dictate and voice-controlled functions have given people access to parts of the digital world that they otherwise couldn’t enjoy. With advancements in AI, smart devices like Alexa, Cortana, Siri, and other virtual assistants can help the visually impaired or those with limited mobility get more done with less effort. Voice-controlled devices open a realm of opportunities for those who might have previously sat on the sidelines. 

Another great tool available for blind or visually impaired people is a screen reader. These devices analyze the text on a web page and convert it into audio that the user can listen to. With this, visually impaired internet users can locate, navigate, and even design web pages much more easily. It even picks up alt text describing a webpage’s images, so users can accurately understand what the image portrays. Not only does this help enhance the intended message of a webpage, but accurate alt text also helps boost SERP rankings and is an important aspect of SEO. 

There are also tools that describe colors to the user so that anyone can choose the theme they like while still maintaining a pleasant user experience for those who are color-blind. Maintaining digital accessibility is just as crucial for eCommerce as it is for brick and mortar stores to maintain physical accessibility standards. 

Making your Business Accessible for Disabled Employees

ECommerce has been on the rise for years, and the recent pandemic has only hastened the process. Buyers and sellers alike find this switch makes doing business more efficient than in the past. However, that isn’t necessarily true for everyone.

Selling to disabled consumers, especially those who are visually impaired, can be tricky at times. And web content accessibility guidelines (WCAG) can be pretty strict. 

However, customers aren’t the only ones that may suffer from a disability like visual impairment. Chances are that some of your employees may have one, too. Neglecting website accessibility makes disabled employees’ jobs more difficult, sometimes even impossible.

Making your eCommerce site more accessible improves the shopping experience and also boosts your ranking with Search Engines. Website accessibility also offers benefits for your organization and employees. 

Neglecting to create disability-friendly work environments can result in an ADA lawsuit. While it may be a hassle for you to make the changes, it’s even worse for disabled employees who work in inaccessible work environments. Dealing with an accessibility lawsuit will ultimately be more difficult than implementing assistance tools, so it pays off in the long run to address issues before they become a problem. 

Financing Disability Assistance

Implementing changes to adhere to web content accessibility guidelines for your eCommerce site can be expensive, but the cost of not doing so is even higher. That’s part of the reason why financing for your eCommerce is so vital. If you need help with that, Payability is here to help.We’re a financing company designed to help eCommerce sellers just like you. We offer two simple solutions: Instant Access for daily payouts and Instant Advance. There are no background checks, and approval is based on your sales history. Click here to learn more about what Payability can do to help your business.

Alison Sperling
Alison is the Director of Marketing at Payability. She has 10+ years of experience in marketing helping small businesses and startups find new tools to grow their business. Prior to Payability, Alison started the marketing team at Stack Overflow. Alison completed an MBA with a concentration in Finance from Syracuse University in 2011. She volunteers with several cat rescue organizations.

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