Building accessible websites is about to get easier than ever. You can soon experience the most robust and reliable accessibility platform in the industry with the next generation of Siteimprove Accessibility. And we are thrilled to say that our customers will receive a free upgrade to the new product.

The new Accessibility module was created in partnership with the EU Commission and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), the world’s leading group of organizations, thought leaders, and experts working to develop international web standards. Our collaboration with W3C as active members of their community means our platform contains the latest developments in web accessibility.

Let’s go over the benefits you can unlock with the upcoming release of the Siteimprove Accessibility module.

What’s new?

  • Assisted accessibility testing anyone can run
  • New checks based on the latest W3C standards
  • Key insights to help you prioritize critical issues
  • Set your accessibility goals for a targeted approach
  • A comprehensive Accessibility DCI® score

Build accessible websites with total confidence

We have reengineered our Automated Accessibility Engine, known as Alfa, to ensure optimal performance every time you run a check on your website. Think of Alfa as the brain of the Accessibility module. To make the brain smarter, we’ve enhanced Alfa by integrating the latest Accessibility Conformance Testing (ACT) rules.

Achieve accurate and consistent results

As part of our collaboration with W3C, Siteimprove’s accessibility experts are actively writing new ACT rules and incorporating them into the Accessibility module. ACT rules are a growing set of test rules that aim to harmonize the interpretation of W3C accessibility standards, such as Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 and Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI).

Since WCAG 2.1 requirements can be vague and hard to read, they are left open to different interpretations. This makes it difficult for organizations to know whether they have met the legal requirements or not. With ACT rules at the core of our Accessibility module, you can expect consistent results and a better understanding of accessibility standards.

Customize your accessibility goals

You can set your accessibility goals so that you only see the accessibility issues relevant to your compliance goals, whether that’s Level A, AA, or AAA compliance. This will give you a clear overview of the issues you need to prioritize to reach your accessibility goals.

Prioritize relevant content

You can organize your site’s issues by the page section they are found in: header, footer, metadata, or all other content. This enables you to make smart decisions on recurring issues that span multiple pages. It also enables different content and development teams to prioritize issues that affect the parts of the page they are responsible for. 

For instance, if you have an image that lacks the adequate color contrast ratio in your footer and that footer appears on multiple pages, your design team can use the Footer issues filter to easily gain an overview of each occurrence on your site. Depending on the number of occurrences and the severity of the issue, your team can decide how to prioritize this issue with other tasks.

Measure success with the Accessibility DCI score

The new Accessibility Digital Certainty Index (DCI) score enables you to easily track and report your progress towards your accessibility goals.

You receive DCI points for every occurrence of an issue that you fix, no matter how big or small. You also get points for reviewing potential issues.

Because the Accessibility DCI score tracks all issues, even across groups, on your site, you can use it as a benchmark for your organization to use in your documentation and reporting. And if you have multiple sites, you can use their respective DCI scores to compare their progress.

Navigate accessibility testing with ease

With the new Accessibility module, you do not need to be an expert to understand and test for accessibility issues. We equipped the Page Report with better documentation and guidance, so anyone can build accessible websites.

Gain insight into accessibility

In the Page Report, we added a “Why is this an issue?” section that gives you a detailed description of the issues that are flagged on your page. In this section, you also get direct links to the relevant success criteria in WCAG 2.1 and the W3C ACT rules.

The Page Report also provides you with at least one example of how to fix the issue and, when possible, even provides code examples. With a better understanding of accessibility issues, you are well-equipped to fix the issues and manage your team’s tasks.

Execute testing with expert guidance

In the Potential issues section, you can quickly review potential accessibility issues using an intuitive Review Flow. When you review an item, the Review Flow will ask clear, simple questions that guide you to the most accurate results for your website.

For example, if we detect a video on your website, we need to know if the content is a live stream, has audio, or has captions. With this follow up information, the Review Flow can determine if there is an accessibility issue with that particular video. And if the video appears on different pages of your site, you only need to go through the Review Flow once for the entire site.

The future of web accessibility

Siteimprove Accessibility will keep growing and developing as we continue working in collaboration with W3C and WCAG to define harmonized testing standards and gain a better understanding of accessibility requirements.

We will reach out to existing customers over the coming months to give them exclusive early access. And we are working towards making the revamped Accessibility module available to everyone later in the year, so be on the lookout for more news on that.

With reliable testing, transparent documentation, and expert guidance soon at your fingertips, you can join us in creating a better web for all.

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