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How Do You Make Your Shopify Website ADA-Compliant?

Web accessibility is a term you should be acquainted with if you operate a Shopify business. It refers to modifications, tools, and technology that aid disabled people in accessing and engaging with websites and other online content. In a nutshell, these changes make it far simpler for someone to understand, comprehend, and interact with anything on the internet.

Let’s dive in.

What Do WCAG and ADA Mean?

Unfortunately, the truth is that a majority of Shopify websites are not fully accessible or compliant.

EcomBack can guide you through everything you need to know about being ADA compliance and digital web accessibility.

What Are the Risks Associated with Non-Compliance? What Could Happen if Your Shopify Store is Not ADA Compliant?

It’s your obligation as a Shopify website owner to make sure that all visitors, including those with disabilities, can access your site, goods, and any digital content you produce.

Now that the importance of web accessibility is growing, a few law firms have entered the market and are raking in cash by suing website owners. This is known as a “surf-by” lawsuit akin to the “drive-by” ADA lawsuits that have exploited the law in a nefarious way against businesses and organizations for three decades.

ADA compliance is critical for any Shopify website, as failure to do so might result in costly demand letters, which start from about $5,000. Most of these lawsuits are boilerplate copy-paste filings seeking class-action status. Your non-compliant Shopify website could face settlement fees (that go to the plaintiff’s lawyers) that can range from $20,000 to $50,000 to settle and hundreds of thousands of dollars to defend at trial!

Why is it Important to Have an Accessible Shopify Store?

  1. Shopify is one of the largest e-commerce platforms.

Shopify’s digital presence has had a significant impact on the e-commerce industry. Shopify websites must comply with ADA standards for both legal and commercial reasons, as well as to preserve their good reputation.

  1. Lawyers are specifically targeting e-commerce websites.

Image of man holding pencil with Shopify

Law firms are trolling for a win, which is why physical and online-based businesses with a presence in the United States are so appealing. Here is a must read-article for any Shopify website owner or manager detailing how these law firms are finding success in the Southern District of New York (SDNY) (their preferred venue) –

Forum Shopping for a Website Lawsuit Over the Holidays

So even if you only have an online presence in the United States and do not actually sell to US clients (meaning they can only see your website, not buy from it), you can still be at risk. Overall, ADA compliance is a requirement no matter where your site is or where you are based.

  1. ADA compliance is a social responsibility.

There is no debate from a moral standpoint. It is the correct thing to do to prioritize a website’s accessibility. Accessibility entails providing an eCommerce or information website that is accessible to everyone, regardless of their disability. It’s something most businesses overlook, but it has a significant impact on individuals’ daily lives.

You’ll have a bigger influence by becoming ADA compliant now that many individuals rely on a company’s online platform more than they ever have before.

What Are the Benefits of Having a WCAG ADA-Compliant Shopify Site?

The good news is that taking the time to make your website accessible is beneficial to both you and your customers. You’re ensuring that everyone has the best possible online purchasing and viewing experience by making your Shopify site accessible.

One of the primary aims of accessibility is to create platforms, services, and online environments that are more accessible, useable, and comprehendible for disabled users. If a website isn’t ADA compliant, disabled customers may not be able to access it in the same way as anybody else can, which is an unpleasant experience. We all have the right to access the internet and all it has to offer, including persons with impairments.

The number of ADA lawsuits is on the rise, making you a likely target if your Shopify website isn’t up to snuff. Taking a few easy actions to enhance your website may make the distinction between more sales and expensive legal expenses, as well as a damaged brand reputation.

In today’s market, a brand’s reputation is everything! Customers want to do business with companies that are inclusive and provide them the sense that they are part of something.

You are automatically growing your target audience and increasing your bottom line by placing a strong emphasis on web accessibility and ADA compliance. Why give up potential sales to something that’s so important to fix?

 

Graphic of laptop and website ADA compliance

 

Google is Blind!

We all know how crucial SEO is. The cleaner your website code is (i.e., accessible), the easier it is for Google to read the content you have. This results in higher rankings and more sales you’ll be able to get. Many people, however, are unaware that accessibility and SEO are intimately linked.

By making your Shopify site accessible, you are providing shoppers and browsers with a better user experience, and search engines love an easy-to-use and accessible website. It signals to the search engine that your site is valuable and worth ranking higher. This means that people who are looking for the products and services you offer will be more likely to find you in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

This, in turn, will result in an increase in traffic to your website, and as we know, more traffic usually means more sales. So not only are you doing the right thing by becoming ADA compliant, but you’re also increasing your chances of making more money.

There’s no reason not to make your Shopify site accessible! It’s beneficial for everyone involved- customers, employees, and businesses alike. By enhancing your website according to WCAG 2.1 regulations, you are helping to break down barriers and make the internet a friendlier place for all.

The Main Benefits:

  • Enhanced User Experience
  • Reduced Legal Risks
  • Improved Market Reach
  • Improved SEO

How Do You Make Your Shopify Store Accessible?

The Department of Justice recently released their guidance for accessibility, which is twenty years overdue and very basic. But it is worth reading. Click here to read

Color and Text Accessibility

Customers who have visual impairments may appreciate your store more if you use the proper text formatting. WCAG has some guidelines, including using the appropriate color contrast, headers, text size, and alignment. Text links should also be distinguished by an underline or a visible differentiator.

Alternative Text

It’s critical to ensure that images are available to everyone, regardless of their skill or handicap. You must use ALT text with your website’s photos to make them more accessible and readable by screen-reading software, and Google’s crawlers. ALT text works with screen readers to guarantee that visitors know and understand what they’re seeing on your site.

Video Accessibility

It’s also critical to understand your customers’ needs when it comes to accessibility, as this will ensure that your videos are accessible to everyone. Text-to-speech is important for some people, while others are deaf or have hearing difficulties and need closed captioning.

Forms

Forms on your website must be labeled correctly for screen readers to convey to their users the information they need to enter such as “credit card number”, along with clear instructions on what to fill out, and errors that are caused when some form field is not filled in.

Navigation

A critical and time-consuming aspect of website remediation for accessibility is to ensure that the website can be navigated using only a keyboard, specifically the TAB key. People with impaired vision navigate the website without the use of a mouse.

How to Test Your Shopify Website for Accessibility Errors

The most common and free way to run an automated test, which only captures about thirty to forty percent of the errors is a free Google Chrome Extension called WAVE by WebAim. Click here to read more about WAVE.

Shopify Store ADA Accessibility Consulting, Auditing, Remediation, & Training Services

EcomBack has a devoted team of trained experts and ADA consultants who can fix your Shopify store according to the ADA and WCAG 2.1 guidelines. You can avoid expensive ADA federal lawsuits with our expert Shopify ADA Compliance services.

We can assist you in lowering your legal liability and making your website accessible to persons with disabilities by employing our team of experienced web accessibility specialists.

Shopify Store ADA Accessibility Consulting, Auditing, Remediation, & Training Services

ADA consultants at EcomBack can audit your Shopify site, set up policies and procedures, create training manuals, and test your website for WCAG 2.1 compliance. We can also help you to understand how to make your website more accessible for all users.

We do things the right way at EcomBack. To ensure Shopify website accessibility compliance, we use the highest standards and tools. Our experience in web development and digital marketing, as well as our practicality, make us the ideal ADA consultancy for your company.

The good news is that making your Shopify website ADA-compliant doesn’t need to be complicated. With the help of EcomBack, it can be easy and straightforward- so you can focus on what you do best: running your business!

Contact us today! Speak to an ADA consultant today and get an accessible Shopify store.

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