Effective colour contrast
People with visual impairments may struggle to read content if the text and the background aren’t clearly distinguished. Implementing high colour contrast will make the words easier to comprehend, as long as they aren’t too bright, as this can cause eye fatigue. It’s also a good idea to use white space or borders, which can help users separate blocks of content.
Full keyboard navigation
There are plenty of reasons why a user would rely on a keyboard rather than a mouse to navigate a website, particularly for those with a motor disability. This usually involves using the Tab key to interact with things like links and buttons.
To provide a good user experience, each element must be presented in a logical, intuitive order — left to right, top to bottom. Test your own site using the Tab key, and if there are any parts of the site you can’t reach, this is a problem you’ll have to rectify.
Another tip is to keep your navigation as simple and streamlined as possible, so that users don’t have to spend much time tabbing through all the links. You could also consider having a link at the top of each page which skips to the main content.
A range of indicators
Indicators show users when and where they need to take action. In terms of accessibility, it’s important not to rely on just one visual cue, such as colour. What if a potential customer is colour blind, for example?
Rather than simply making the text red to show an error, you could also add icons or additional text, and help links stand out by formatting them in bold or with an underline. This also applies to focus indicators, which allow people to see where exactly their mouse or keyboard cursor has landed on the site. When someone hovers over a link, for instance, it needs to look distinct compared to the other elements on the page.
When designing a form, every field should be clearly labelled so users instantly understand what they need to write. For example, ‘your surname’ could be written in the box where their surname should go. Ambiguous place-holder text can be confusing, but you don’t want to overwhelm someone with a long instruction either. Simply provide the right amount of information for them to complete the task without any second-guessing.