Why You Need Inclusive Design When Creating Your Digital Product
In product design, inclusive design is often confused with accessibility and we mustn’t get both concepts mixed up. Where accessibility is based on principles that support the design of digital products and services for folks with disabilities, inclusive design is more universal and human-centered, applying to a varied range of people.
Why do you need an inclusive design for your products?
Well, for starters, there are quite a several sons why your products should have inclusive design. For this article, we would highlight four reasons why your products need universal design.
It’s good for SEO
Want to do wonders for your SEO? Integrate accessible semantic structure into your site when showcasing products. These include HI, H2 tags, descriptive link text, alt text for images, closed captions for videos, and so on. With all of this in place, you can be sure to cut down on the cost of maintaining your site while increasing its visibility.
It’s the humane thing to do
The world we live in is built primarily with able-bodied people in mind. Hence, certain factors like societal biases, inaccessible restrooms, and so on. On disabilities, the social model gives that people are not disabled by condition but by societal barriers. Today, over one billion people in the world have disabilities that are not always apparent at first. However, the advancement of technology has helped to change the lives of people with disabilities through the provision of peer support, connection, and independence. The same way elevators and ramps have helped folks in wheelchairs navigate the world in real-time is the same people with disabilities need to navigate the digital world with accessible technology.
It boosts sales and customer base
The inaccessibility of stores, websites, and apps has made making purchases arduous for people with disabilities and some folks find themselves spending less than they would like due to many restrictions. The United States has 26% of its citizens living with one disability or the other. And that’s just the United States alone. How does this affect the consumer base and sales? Think of it as the doorway to a brick-and-mortar store.
When the door itself is not designed inclusively, people with disabilities can’t come in and that’s one in every four customers you lose just for that oversight. This applies to a site or product with an inaccessible design. You are just going to keep them out. Running a business with inclusion and accessibility in mind goes a long way to expanding its customer base and giving sales a whopping boost.
It boosts brands
Because not a lot of businesses incorporate inclusive design in their model, being that one brand that does so makes it easy to stand out from your competition. A brand that actively demonstrates sustainability and ethics at its core tends to fall into the preference of the average consumer as opposed to a brand that does not. Want to top the ranks as a leader in tech? Make practicing accessible design a priority. Examples of brands that make inclusive design a core of everything they do are Microsoft and Apple. They not only create apps for people with hearing and seeing difficulties, but they also integrate universal design into their major products. Today, these two brands are number #1 in the tech space.
But you too can bag that edge by bringing inclusive design into your products.
Implementing universal design into products is not as complex as it may seem at first. All most businesses need to do is bring it to the forefront of everything they do with products, sites, apps, and even stores and it gets much easier from there. Besides the fact that it can be a pretty neat strategy, having products with inclusive design is more or less the right thing to do and can play a huge role in creating a world where no one feels isolated.