Visual Disabilites and Beyond: Lifting Digital Barriers for All with accessWidget

Visual Disabilites and Beyond: Lifting Digital Barriers for All with accessWidget

Sponsored by accessiBe.


For people with disabilities, digital barriers prevent navigating the internet. These barriers hinder the user experience and create an environment where it’s sometimes impossible to browse websites both leisurely and in order to make a purchase. The only way to ensure that people with disabilities are able to use your website, is to make it accessible. Companies like accessiBe are on a mission to help businesses achieve accessibility with AI-powered solutions and professional services that allow all users to equally access websites. 

Accessing websites, however, looks and feels different according to disability characteristics and many people tend to forget that. In fact, most people automatically think about a person who is blind when asked to consider the communities that benefit from web accessibility. Often, they overlook those with invisible or mobility disabilities, who also deserve fair access to usable websites. accessiBe’s AI-powered tool, accessWidget, was built to break down the digital barriers that impact all communities. 

Those who are blind or live with low vision experience the following digital barriers online: 

  • Images that lack alternative text 
  • Poor page, heading, or content structure 
  • Inconsistent or difficult navigation 
  • Time-limited forms and fields
  • Low contrast between text and background 
  • Pixelated images or visuals

Those with mobility disabilities, learning or cognitive disabilities, livewith epilepsy, and who are deaf or hard of hearing, may experience digital barriers like: 

  • Lack of text or description for the function of a link 
  • Complex content or navigation 
  • High contrast and repeating patterns  
  • Triggering and/or flashing images or videos 
  • Time-limited forms and fields 
  • Insufficient space in clickable areas
  • Videos and multimedia without closed captions or transcripts

accessWidget works to clean up the user experience and decrease the amount of cognitive load on a website. The tool itself is designed for the inclusion of various disabilities and works in a subtle, yet impactful way, based on what each user needs. 

How does accessiBe’s widget work? 

accessWidget consists of two applications that work together to make websites inclusive and accessible. The first application is the accessibility interface which affects a website’s UI and design-related adjustments. The second application is the AI-powered process that affects comprehensive digital accessibility including compatibility of screen readers and keyboard navigation optimization. After initial installation, accessWidget takes up to 48 hours to make a website accessible and compliant in adherence to WCAG standards.

accessWidget benefits for users who are blind or have low vision

For users who are blind, accessWidget syncs with screen readers and makes dropdown menus forms, icons, and buttons accessible to improve the user experience. The tool also adds alt text of images to give context to the user browsing the website. To do all of this, accessWidget uses machine learning to scan, analyze, and interpret page elements and uses ARIA attributes to give that 

For those with low vision, the tool’s interface offers a “Vision-Impaired” profile that changes the design and UI of the website accordingly. Scaling, font sizing, spacing, contrast, and orientation are just some of the adjustments made during a user’s session. All of these website changes improve the usability of a website, while also making the browsing experience more enjoyable for everyone.

accessWidget benefits for users with mobility and invisible disabilities

For users with mobility disabilities, acessWidget makes websites keyboard navigable. The contextual understanding aspect of the technology does this by temporarily adjusting the backend code, allowing users to rely on their keys for actions and functions. Those with cognitive or learning disabilities open accessWidget’s interface to turn on the “Cognitive Disabilities” profile that activates relevant adjustments needed for focus, context, or guidance. 

In the accessibility interface, a “Seizure Safe” profile is also present for people with epilepsy, which turns off or freezes flashing or moving special effects found in images, video, or other multimedia. Individual adjustments also exist for personalized preferences or adjustments needed to fit certain disability characteristics.

How to set up and use accessiBe’s widget 

Setting up accessWidget is a business-friendly endeavor. Website owners simply open an account, install the one-line of code into their website, and wait 5 minutes for accessWidget to install. After 48 hours, the tool’s AI-powered process has made all of the website’s content accessible and it re-scans and analyzes the site every 24 hours to update new or added assets. The goal of accessWidget is to streamline the process of eliminating digital barriers on websites for people with disabilities. 

Learn more about accessWidget 

Resources are public to help users and website owners get the most out of accessWidget and its many functions. accessiBe’s product page gives a clear overview of how accessWidget works, but you can also watch the demo videos that give an in-depth explanation of the technology and benefits of the tools. Website examples and testimonials are also available, offering insight and personal experiences from customers, agencies, and users alike. 

Asheley Rice

I am a pop culture and social media expert. Aside from writing about the latest news health, I also enjoy pop culture and Yoga. I have BA in American Cultural Studies and currently enrolled in a Mass-Media MA program. I like to spend my spring breaks volunteering overseas.

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