The link between SEO and accessibility and how to master it on your e-commerce website
User-friendliness is paramount online, and that means your website needs to be immediately easy to use for everyone. This means that it doesn’t matter what device someone uses, whether they use their phone or desktop, and it doesn’t matter if the user in question is working around disabilities like hearing, visual or motor impairments. Technology can do so much, but you need first to make your website as accessible as possible. The good news for those looking to boost their ranking on the SERPs and their DA, accessibility and SEO today go hand-in-hand. By making your website accessible, you can reach a wider audience and provide a better user experience for everyone, all while improving your on-page SEO efforts.
The Link Between SEO and Accessibility
SEO and accessibility may seem like two unrelated topics, but they are actually closely linked. Google and other search engines want to provide the best possible user experience for their users. This means they prioritize websites that are easy to use, fast, and accessible. Websites that are not accessible can hurt your SEO efforts because they can lead to a poor user experience. For example, if your website does not have alt tags for images, a user with a visual impairment may not be able to understand what the image is about. This can lead to frustration and a negative user experience, which can hurt your SEO.
How to Master SEO and Accessibility
To master SEO and accessibility, you need to focus on optimizing both aspects of your website. This is particularly important for e-commerce sites that showcase products. You want your products to stand out, be easy to find, and be accessible to everyone. If you aren't quite sure how to optimize your site or alternatively want to get it done right the first time, it's recommended that you bring in an e-commerce SEO expert. This way, you can optimize your site and products for users and search engines all in one go to increase visibility and improve the overall customer experience.
The strategy laid out for you will generally make these key recommendations:
Conduct an Accessibility Audit
The first step in improving your website's accessibility is to conduct an accessibility audit. This involves reviewing your website to identify any accessibility issues and fixing them. There are many tools available online that can help you with this, including the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and the A11y Project.
Use Proper HTML Markup
Proper HTML markup is essential for both SEO and accessibility. Make sure you use heading tags (H1, H2, H3, etc.) properly and include alt tags for images. Proper HTML markup can help SE understand your website and provide a better user experience for people with disabilities.
Make Your Website Fast
Website speed is an important factor in both SEO and accessibility. Users with disabilities may have slower internet connections, so it's essential to optimize your website for speed. Use tools like Google's PageSpeed Insights to identify areas where you can improve your website's speed.
Provide Alternative Text for Images
Alt tags provide alternative text for images on your website. Alt text and tags can help users with visual impairments make sense of images, particularly if there's text meant to be read on them. Make sure you provide accurate and descriptive alt text for all images on your website. You'll want to optimize the text so that it's easy to understand, informative, and conveys the image well.