Are you reading this article on your smart device or computer with perfect use of your eyes, ears, and fingers? That’s great if you are, but did you know almost 10% of your readers, on average, may not be?
A quick disclaimer: This post is meant to be purely constructive in every way. I wanted to talk about this because I see an opportunity to help. The anime blogging community here is one of the most inclusive that I’ve seen, but we can be even better.
Web accessibility is a big deal these days. With the ever growing use of technology in our lives, it’s becoming more essential that content is presented in a way that that allows everyone to access it. It’s such a big deal that there are government requirements (WCAG) for businesses to make their web pages accessible for blind, deaf, or motor impaired users.
Of course, most of you reading this are probably WordPress content creators, which is a fancy way to say you write your own blogs. There’s no one standing over you to make sure your pages are accessible, or forcing you to do things in a certain way. All of that is entirely up to you.
But if it was easy for you to make your page more accessible for a reader who would otherwise have trouble with it, wouldn’t you want to?
WordPress has a whole lot of tips on how to make your pages more accessible. You can find them here, but today I want to share a simple tip that takes mere seconds of your time but will make a big difference.
Say you found the perfect image for a post. It’s funny, and it illustrates your point.
If you don’t add descriptive text though, this is what a viewer using a screen reader gets:
The good news is that adding descriptive text is super easy. If you’re using the WordPress interface to insert a picture, there’s a field set up for you to do just that:
Is it hard for you to read the text? I bet you wish you had some help now 🙂
Fortunately, I can give you a closer look:
That’s just a bare bones description I used so it would visually fit in the box, but you can make this as descriptive as you like. eg: A girl with red frame glasses, Mirai from Kyokai no Kanata, taps furiously on her phone while complaining “All I can do is whine on my blog!”
Once you enter the text you want, hit insert and voila! you’ve made your image 100% more accessible!
There are countless blogs that don’t have alt text for their images, and usually it’s because the blogger isn’t familiar with the tools available.
But maybe you know this tip already, yet don’t feel like it’s worthwhile. Maybe you feel like your images are only useful for someone who can see them without descriptions. That could be the case, but how about letting your reader decide that for themselves instead of you deciding for them?
I hope that everyone who reads this is either already using descriptive text or will try it on their next blog post. I’m sure you will agree the more “eyes” you get on your posts, the better.
Are there any quick and easy tips you use on your blogs to make them easier to enjoy? Leave a comment and let everyone know!