Have you heard of Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)? If you’re a public sector organization or a private or non-profit organization with more than 50 employees, it’s time to familiarize yourself! Why is that? Because AODA is an Ontario law, and according to this law, there are now less than 2 years left to meet its web accessibility requirements (WCAG 2.0 AA). Not sure where to start to meet the January 1, 2021 deadline? Don’t worry, we’re here to help. Here are four different ways you can start working towards AODA compliance and a more accessible website.

1.      Download the All-in-One Digital Accessibility E-Book

Get started on your web accessibility journey with this All-in-One Digital Accessibility E-Book. We’ve put together our best tips and expert insights on how to create a more inclusive website. In 14 chapters, you’ll learn the basics of web accessibility, how to create accessible PDFs, how accessibility helps with SEO, and how to employ accessible social media tips!

2.      Download Siteimprove’s Free Google Chrome Accessibility Checker

Another great step towards learning about accessibility and the issues on your web pages, is by downloading our free Accessibility Checker for Google Chrome. This accessibility checker evaluates a web page for accessibility issues. It provides intuitive, visual feedback of your content by highlighting issues directly on the page. This tool also gives clear explanations of how these issues affect your website visitors, as well as specific recommendations on how to fix them.

The check is done right within your Chrome browser, which allows for secure evaluation of password-protected or non-public pages, multi-step forms, and dynamic content.

3.      Automated Accessibility Testing

Web accessibility is not a one-time job. It’s an ongoing process because you continuously make changes to your website. To get an overview of the overall accessibility of your website and all its pages and content, it’s important to have an automated accessibility tool in place. With the Siteimprove Intelligence Platform, you gain access to site-wide accessibility diagnostics as often as you need them. You’ll be able to see a thorough audit of accessibility issues (pending and resolved), track improvement with progress graphs, and dig deeper into accessibility issues on a page-by-page basis.

4.      Manual Accessibility Testing

While most accessibility issues can be caught with automated testing, there are some that require manual testing. This includes keyboard-only commands, compatibility with various assistive technologies, and coordination with colour-adjustment plugins for web browsers. Just as automated scans of your website should be run regularly, manual accessibility testing should also be a routine part of your website maintenance. Through a series of keyboard-only interactions, assistive computer technologies, and web browser plug-ins, manual testers perform a full WCAG review of a site so that you get the benefit of computerized scanning as well as human observation.

Wondering how other Ontario businesses have started working towards AODA website compliance? Take a look at our customer stories from University of Ontario Institute of Technology and Structube!