Web Accessibility for Square Online Sites
With Square Online, you can create a professional website or online store that attracts visitors and customers from all across the globe. To get started, it’s recommended that you choose an accessible website design that everyone can navigate. Accessible design improves the overall experience and satisfaction of your customers, and ensures equal and inclusive access for as many visitors as possible.
Note: For more information on building a website with Square, check out getting started with Square Online. You can also learn more about designing and customising your Square Online site for more information on all of your site design options.
The tips below can help you plan and build a website that satisfies any accessibility guidelines within your jurisdiction. You can always retrofit an existing site to make it accessible, but the best approach is to plan with accessibility in mind when first creating it.
Text and Link Accessibility Tips
The way your content is written and displayed on your website can have a huge impact on accessibility. When writing and linking text, ask yourself the following questions:
Are the font and text easy to read when zoomed in or enlarged?
Is there enough space between each line of text?
Do the text and background colours have good contrast?
Is the content written in a clear and simple way?
Are links easily distinguishable from the surrounding text?
Does linked text make sense out of context (such as linking the phrase “click here to learn more about our mission” instead of just linking “click here”)?
Do all pages have a descriptive title?
Image Accessibility Tips
The HTML code for images displayed on a website typically includes what’s known as ‘alt text’, which screen readers use to describe images for visitors who are unable to see. Using appropriate alt text is also important for search engine optimisation (SEO) since search engines can read the alt text to better understand the content of a page.
There are a few key points to consider when adding alt text to an image:
Keep the text brief and focused on only the purpose or content of the image.
Alt text shouldn’t begin with phrases like “A picture of” or “Image of”. Screen readers will already identify the content as an image.
If an image is also a link, the alt text can possibly describe the function of the link (although it’s generally better to link text rather than an image).
If an image is purely decorative and not relevant to the content of the page, then the alt text may be left blank.
Video Accessibility Tips
If your website includes video, you can add captions and create transcripts to make them more accessible. It’s possible to add subtitles directly to a video file, but this option requires video editing software and is more time-consuming. You may prefer to host your video on a site like YouTube or Vimeo to add captions using built-in settings.
If you’re using YouTube to host your video, you can add subtitles to your videos or use automatic captioning to have subtitles in several languages. Automatic captioning is typically based on speech recognition, so it may not provide perfect results, but you can review and edit the captions once the video has been processed. Learn more about how to add subtitles to YouTube videos and use automatic captions on YouTube videos in the Google support centre. You can also check out how to add captions to videos hosted on Vimeo in the Vimeo support centre.
Learn more about displaying videos on your website with Square Online.
Additional Accessibility Resources
Take a look at these additional web accessibility resources for more information:
Disclaimer: The information in this article is solely provided for informational purposes, and isn’t intended to be construed or relied upon as legal advice. Square is unable to ensure that websites built with our platform meet any accessibility compliance standards. We suggest you reference the laws and legislation of your jurisdiction for more information on how to make a website accessible. Like most ‘what-you-see-is-what-you-get’ site builders, the finished product will be as accessible as you make it. We provide all the tools to help you build a compliant website, but site accessibility is your responsibility.