Charities, at their very core, are all about helping those in need. Yet as more and more charities move online, many are ignoring a fundamental need of those they typically interact with – and that’s the accessibility of their digital products. With poor accessibility, a charity is neglecting a whole population of disadvantaged people, while also missing out on the wider take-up of its offerings.
Surprisingly, a significant number of companies and charities still ignore the power of the ‘purple pound’, which refers to the spending from disabled households in the UK, and equates to an estimated £2bn per month. By engaging with this neglected user base your charity gains more potential donors, advocates, and sponsors. It also means you’re maximising the potential of your digital products and making sure they deliver on their promises.
In fact, if you’ve never considered the accessibility of your digital products, new accessibility regulations in 2018 for public sector bodies – and not-for-profit organisations in the UK – could mean your digital products are actually non-compliant. The regulations stipulate that digital products, like websites and mobile apps, have to be accessible for all users. That means they should be ‘perceivable, operable, understandable and robust’. These new regulations outline the requirement for many organisations to focus on ensuring digital product accessibility.
That being said, even if your organisation isn’t subject to these regulations, bringing your digital products in line with these standards is simply the best way to do right by everyone, including users with disabilities. For example, 85% of websites and digital products fall short of contrast requirements, which means that 85% of digital products fail to serve the people they’re meant to.
How Charities can develop accessible digital products
In our latest guide, we provide charities with a comprehensive overview of how to develop a digital experience that works for everyone. The guide lays out, in plain and simple language, how you can build truly accessible digital products – and is ideal for any charitable organisation wanting to make its online presence fully inclusive, while at the same time catering for disabled users.
We know how hard it can be to know just how to ensure digital products meet the right standard of accessibility compliance, especially for charities that aren’t heavily involved in the digital space. The guide starts right at the beginning, from considering the digital touchpoints your users interact with, to what areas you should consider when auditing your products. The guide covers:
- The 15 areas to pay close attention to when defining the areas of focus within your digital product
(The 15 areas that ensure your product is set up or managed in a way that best performs for accessibility)
- Adjusting WordPress powered websites
- Publishing your accessibility statement: How & What to cover
- Links to useful resources
- AN audit of top 20 charities’ accessibility scores
- How and when to create an accessible design system
Furthermore, if your charity has to comply with the 2018 regulations, the guide explains how and what to cover in your accessibility statement to ensure all users know what to expect. We’ve made sure to include useful reference links and detailed insights on how and when it’s best to create an accessible design system, to arm you with all the information you need to get started with making your offering truly inclusive and accessible by anyone.