As a cannabis business, you likely want your customers to have easy access to the products they need. There’s a good chance your customers want that too. What happens when they visit your website, though? Can every prospective customer access the information on your web pages, or is it only accessible to some groups? Despite advocating for cannabis accessibility, many businesses neglect the importance of website accessibility.
Website accessibility refers to making your website usable for all visitors, including those with disabilities or impairments. It focuses on ensuring there are no barriers that might prevent interaction with or access to information on your site.
By creating an accessible website, you can reach a broader audience and create more positive experiences for all of your visitors. In turn, this can increase the likelihood that your visitors become customers. Here’s what you need to know.
Website Accessibility Standards to Know
Website accessibility consists of four main principles or standards:
- Perceivable: Your online visitors must be able to perceive or comprehend the information on your website using at least one of their senses.
- Operable: Your user interface (UI) components and navigation must be usable for all website visitors. In other words, your site can’t require interactions that some users might not be able to perform.
- Understandable: Visitors must be able to comprehend the content on your website. They should also be able to understand how to operate the user interface.
- Robust: Your content must be compatible with a variety of user agents, including different web browsers and assistive technologies, now and in the future.
Developing Your Cannabis Website Design: Website Accessibility Tips
The following tips can help you create a cannabis website design that’s accessible to all of your online visitors:
Use Headings to Organize Content Structure
Headings and subheadings (<h1>, <h2>, etc.) form the outline of a webpage. They help screen readers understand the organization of a given page, allowing them to navigate it. As a bonus, they also help search engines, which can aid in your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts.
Add Alt Text to Images
Alt text describes what images on a webpage show, enabling screen readers to understand them and convey them properly to users. Keep in mind that you don’t always need to use it. Decorative images — those that serve no purpose other than breaking up content or complementing text — don’t need alt text.
Label Input Elements
When adding input fields to forms, use the <label> tag. It lets screen readers know what information a user should provide and where it should go.
Provide Captions and Transcripts
Captions and transcripts provide text alternatives for your visitors. Choose video players that support closed captioning. Include transcripts for audio (and video) content.
Take Care With Color
Poor color choices make the elements on your web pages harder to distinguish for visually impaired visitors. They can also be jarring for those without visual impairments. In either case, they can ruin the user experience.
Choose your website colors with care. You can also use tools to help you assess color contrast and ensure your pages are visually accessible.
Keep Content Simple
Avoid using large, complex words and long sentences. Keeping things simple ensures your content is easy to read and understand.
Test Your Website Accessibility
Check your website yourself to make sure it’s accessible. Try navigating your pages and controlling their elements using a keyboard. Try out a screen reader and other assistive technologies. Make sure everything works properly — and is accessible — on mobile devices.
Make Your THC Brand Website Accessible to All Visitors
Do you need help developing an accessible cannabis website? The website design experts at Highopes are here to help. Contact us to schedule your call today!