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Saturday, 2 November 2019

Master of all things email – ensuring accessibility

What exactly is email accessibility?

It’s a step farther than making sure your email can be read on desktop and mobile devices. There is another group to take into consideration when designing emails. This group’s of those with disabilities. These people may have limitations to what they can see in your emails. They may also require assistive technologies to read their emails.

Master of all things email – ensuring accessibility

Just when you thought you had the clever wit and artistry to create the most enticing emails, we have a wrench to throw into your world – email accessibility. It’s not necessarily a wrench, however an additional layer of awareness when designing your emails. Think of today’s blog as a way to open your eyes to ensure that those with impairments won’t ever miss your message again.

Visually impaired

Technology is available to remove vision obstacles by making the text readable by:
  • Magnifiers to make text larger for visually impaired readers.
  • Screen reader software that reads out text for the visually impaired or converts information into a Braille interface.

Mobility impaired

These readers require assistive technology to aide their navigational obstacles:
  • Joysticks to improve ease of hand movements.
  • Sip and puff technology controls movements by a series of inhales and exhales.
  • Eye-tracking technology enables people to navigate and control their computer activities with their eye movements.

Typography and design

Typography and design
  • Provide transcripts and alternative (alt) text with different types of media.
  • Use alt text on all images so assistive technology can give accurate descriptions.
  • Provide easily understandable content and explain complex terms.
  • Avoid including any critical information inside of images.
  • Avoid or be generous with time limits on accessing the content.

Specifically, with emails

Now that you are thinking like a web designer, let’s sprinkle some extra knowledge nuggets to your email design strategy.

Subject lines matter

Just as it does with any reader, you are inspiring your reader to open the email. If they are too long, however, it may be difficult to read at extreme magnifications and be deleted before it gets a chance to make an impression.

Headers matter

This helps readers work out the organization of your email and zero in on critical information to them.

Colors matter

Consider readability of the color impaired and make strong contrasts with text and background.

Labeling hyperlinks

Give hyperlinks a meaningful name for clarity of the reader. Something vague like “click here” may be overlooked or skipped. Instead, try “Mailchimp Accessibility Content Guide” instead, so your readers know exactly where they are about to go.

Accessible email coding

So many email creator programs have simplified the process of email creation by novice users. It helps attract subscribers and sell their product, but it falls short when that message needs to get across all levels of accessibility.

Think like a web designer

Think like a web designer

Bring your design – your first coding is free



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