Your website is a user interface through which your customers can gain access to your services. To fully utilise the powerful resource of web based communication and marketing, the performance of your website is of fundamental importance. This means that clarity of design and structure, simplicity of use and intuitive interfaces are of huge consequence.
Accessible Web Design is the process by which your web site is developed to be inclusive to all users of your website, regardless of their software or physical/mental abilities.
Designing your website to be accessible is desirable for both economic reasons and legal reasons. A recent Disability Rights Commission study found that:
"If we look at the high accessibility websites, it took an average of 36 seconds for non-disabled people to do a representative typical task on those sites. For the low accessibility sites it took an average of 52 seconds. That means that on a site which was designed to be accessible for disabled people, non-disabled people were 35 per cent faster. So that I call the usability bonus, because it suggests that if you design sites to be accessible for disabled users, you will actually automatically create a site that is usable for everybody."
-Professor Helen Petrie, City University, Centre for Human Computer Interaction Design
During DRC Formal Investigation Press Briefing
Putting usability/accessibility at the core of your web development strategy can hugely improve the overall performance of your website. We have had website results improve drastically after enhancements in the user interface – and we have the statistics to prove it!