Is your online content more inclusive? Here is how you can make it

By Belinda Macdonald

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This was one question I had never asked myself (to my shame) until I attended the #BeMoreDigital Conference 2021 earlier this month. Amongst the excellent presentations, one in particular stood out for me: Top tips to make your digital marketing #BeMoreInclusive by Ellie Thompson from the social enterprise, Diversity and Ability.

Ellie provided the some great quick fixes that we can all start to make when posting content online and I recommend that you grab a cup of coffee and take 30 mins to watch her presentation – I think you will find it time well-invested.

Here are some of her tips:

  • Choose accessible fonts with no ‘twiddly bits’ and make sure that your text is 12pt size or larger. It is also a good strategy to avoid handwriting styles and ‘funky’ fonts that can be hard to read.
  • Use bold colours and high contrast between text and background – white text on a muted background might look chic, but it can be very difficult to read!
  • When posting images make sure you add AltTags and/or Image Descriptions, using as much detail as the space allows, especially for visual platforms like Instagram.
  • If you are making video content try to keep background noise to a minimum and add Closed Captions for the hard of hearing.
  • For podcasts, a written transcript should be available.
  • When adding links onto posts, use descriptive links where you can, make them a contrasting colour and ideally put them at the end of sentences where they will not interrupt the flow of speech reader device.
  • Use emoji sparingly as each one will be described by a speech reader!
  • When composing hashtags, use CamelCase where possible (adding a capital letter at the start of each word) and add the hashtags at the end of the post.

Accessibility, usability, and inclusion are closely related aspects in creating a web that works for everyone. Their goals, approaches, and guidelines overlap significantly. It is most effective to address them together when designing and developing websites and applications. ~ Web Accessibility Initiative

Belinda Macdonald is a charity trustee, The Uphill Trust – empowering children through education in rural Uganda

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