What WCAG and ADA Compliance Mean for Your Business Website

You might have heard of the terms WCAG and ADA compliance if you have a website. But what do they mean, and why should you care? In this blog post, we will explain WCAG and ADA compliance, how they affect your website, and what you should do to make your website accessible to everyone. 

What is WCAG?

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) are standards that guide making web content accessible to people with disabilities. WCAG covers various aspects of web accessibility, such as text alternatives, captions, keyboard navigation, contrast, and more. WCAG has three levels of conformance: A, AA, and AAA. Each level has a set of success criteria that web content must meet to be considered accessible.

What is ADA?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in various areas of public life, such as employment, education, transportation, and public accommodations. ADA law also applies to websites since they are considered a form of public accommodation. This means websites must be accessible to people with disabilities or face legal consequences. 

WCAG and ADA compliance are closely related. When individuals in the US have sued businesses with websites that aren’t accessible, courts have required those websites to reach WCAG 2.0 Level AA compliance under the ADA. You'll often hear the term WCAG ADA Compliance. That means that the best way to comply with ADA is by following the WCAG. 

So why should you care about WCAG and ADA compliance?

There are several reasons: 

  • It is the right thing to do. Making your website accessible means that you respect the dignity and rights of people with disabilities and value their participation in your online activities.

  • It is good for business. Making your website accessible means that you can reach a wider audience, improve your SEO ranking, enhance your brand reputation, and avoid potential lawsuits.

  • It is required by law. Making your website accessible means you comply with the ADA and other relevant legislation, such as Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.


How to make your website WCAG and ADA-compliant 

  1. Conduct an accessibility audit.
    • You can use various tools and services to check your website for accessibility issues and identify areas for improvement.

  2. Implement accessibility fixes.
    • You can use various techniques and best practices to fix the accessibility issues on your website and make it conform to WCAG 2.0 Level AA or higher.

  3. Maintain accessibility standards.
    • You can use various methods and resources to monitor your website for accessibility changes and ensure it remains compliant over time.

What will happen if you don't make your website WCAG and ADA-compliant?

  1. You might lose customers. People with disabilities might not be able to use your website or might have a negative experience with it, which could lead them to choose your competitors instead.

  2. You might damage your reputation. People with disabilities might share their negative experiences with your website on social media or other platforms, which could harm your brand image and credibility.

  3. You might face legal action. People with disabilities might file complaints or lawsuits against you for violating their rights under the ADA or other laws, which could result in costly fines or settlements.

In conclusion, WCAG and ADA compliance are essential aspects of web accessibility that you should not ignore. By making your website WCAG and ADA compliant, you can benefit yourself, your business, and others. To learn more about how iCorps experts can help your business navigate IT governance and compliance, request a free consultation.