Many companies are devoting more time and money to making their websites and mobile applications more accessible to their users, especially for those with disabilities. As a business owner yourself, you might be wondering, why would a company spend the resources to do that, especially if the website is already functional?
Increasing a company's website accessibility is always a good idea and will ultimately add to your bottom line. Simply from a business standpoint, the ROI from increasing website accessibility makes it worth the resources spent. In this blog post, we will discuss the specific ways that investing in accessibility can lead to an impressive return on investment for companies.
Receive a tax credit — First and foremost, it's worth noting that the government rewards companies that invest in website accessibility. Companies can earnup to a $5,000 tax credit when they spend on improving their websites and making them more accessible to disabled users. That's $5,000 dollars that you don't need to hand over to the state every year, just for doing something that you should probably be doing anyway. Not a bad place to start.
Avoid legal fees — Just as the government rewards those who value accessibility, it also penalizes those who do not, and regulations are growing stricter. It is becoming more common for customers to sue companies for having web pages that do not comply with federal accessibility guidelines, which can be a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Firsthand experience has shown us that this is a position no business wants to be in, and the issue is only getting more serious as the internet is becoming more crucial the lives of consumers.
Increase your consumer base — Company leaders are often shocked after compliance tests reveal just how inaccessible their websites are for their users. It is important to realize just how much of your potential customer base you are missing out on by not making your website truly accessible. Visually impaired, mentally disabled, and even elderly users will not be able to even consider buying your product if you don't make the effort toward making your website accessible to them. The best argument for a return on investment in website accessibility is simply the sheer number of people with disabilities who you will be able to reach, without losing any of your current customers. Through simple accessibility tweaks, you could tap into the 20% of the global population that is disabled and is actively seeking accessible websites.
Stand out from your competition — Not only will you be able to reach an entirely new audience by becoming more accessible, but you will also have a leg up on competing companies who have not yet made the choice to invest. Imagine a disabled customer having to choose between your brand and a competitor's and finding an accessibility statement only on your site's homepage — the choice would be easy. Or worse, imagine losing business to a competitor because they have invested in accessibility, and you haven't.
Show users you care — Investing in accessibility is also a great opportunity for a marketing campaign. Nowadays, consumers are on the lookout to make thoughtful, morally sound purchasing choices. Marketing your brand as one that embraces accessibility will give you a way to stand out from the competition that unites you and your users in a fight for good, a psychological marketing tool that is proven to increase sales.
Invest in your best sales tool — If you're going to invest in anything, invest in your technology. You don't need anyone to tell you how quickly websites are becoming the center of the modern marketplace. Your website needs to be constantly up to date and innovative if you want to stay ahead. Accessibility is just one more piece of the sales puzzle, and soon enough, it won't be an option anymore.
Investing in your website's accessibility makes sense for many financial reasons, and at the end of the day, it's just the right thing to do. Don't hesitate to take the plunge and make your website more accessible. Your customers, and your bottom line, will thank you.