Using SEO, User Experience & Accessibility to Improve Search Results

The effectiveness of mixing website positioning, consumer expertise, and accessibility finest practices into your web-based enterprise often is the holy grail for creating success with search engines like google.

Before we join these highly effective skillsets, everybody has to agree to the union.

We usually are not there but.

The Riddle

On February 5, 2021, I posted the next riddle on Twitter.

Two web sites stroll right into a bar.

One carries a trophy awarded by Google for assembly all their standards to obtain excessive rank in search engine outcomes.

The different web site is constructed with very good data structure, usability, and meets Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) requirements.

A crowd of individuals adopted it into the bar.

Who does the bartender serve first?


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UX/UA conversation on Twitter

The responses had been a combination of selecting the web site centered on the folks it’s designed for versus those that advocated for advertising and marketing because the winner.

Just a few very long time website positioning professionals supplied many concepts that expanded on what would occur with every web site.

Accessibility conversation on Twitter

Google provides tantalizing tidbits of knowledge right here and there about its algorithm annually.

Always listening. Always testing.

What are they on the lookout for?

What does Google want in accessible content?

Google’s John Mueller captured the essence of why I offered the riddle.


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He wrote:

“So, you’re saying each meet a unique bar, however on the similar bar?”


We need the identical finish consequence for our web site. We need it to be chosen.

John Mueller on accessibility

Whose Bar Is Better?

At first, it will appear that in the event you do every part Google requires to meet its efficiency necessities your web site can be rewarded.

In truth, you could get a gold star subsequent to your title.

Google’s Core Web Vitals give attention to consumer expertise.

But it’s restricted to webpage efficiency metrics reminiscent of Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS).

Your web site is a product with many components that make up the consumer expertise.

What goes into creating one of the best consumer expertise?

User interface design. Privacy. Security. Accessibility. Performance.

For instance, when an infinite quantity of visitors hits an internet site unexpectedly, the load on servers have to be prepared to deal with the visitors.

Failure to load pages or gradual response instances is a poor consumer expertise.

For digital entrepreneurs following Google’s pointers, the emphasis is generally technical.

It requires data of how pages are listed and ranked and the way to obtain placement in prime areas on search outcomes pages.

Search engines should current correct outcomes for search queries.

In the riddle, the bartender could have desired a purely correct, dependable, quick web site, and served that one first.


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Is this one of the best ways to measure web sites?

The Human Experience Bar

Most folks felt the web site arriving on the bar joined by a crowd of individuals made a greater impression on the bartender.

What would make an internet site spectacular?

  • Creative consumer interface design.
  • Privacy.
  • Security.
  • Accessibility.
  • Performance.
  • Usability.
  • Human components.
  • Information structure.
  • Conversions and persuasive design.
  • Inclusive design.
  • Responsive design.
  • Universal design.
  • Desirability.
  • Trust.
  • Authority.
  • No ache factors.

All of those are consumer expertise testable metrics. They go far past gradual loading pages or warnings for safety.

The finest consumer expertise is being seen and acknowledged.

We don’t typically take into account treating web site guests as our company. A well-designed, functioning, user-friendly, inclusive webpage is an indication of respect.

When this occurs, happy clients make referrals, which in flip boosts model fame.

We anticipate performance once we arrive.

We anticipate to give you the chance to see the contact kind in order that we are able to enter the information.

We anticipate to perceive there’s a kind on the web page when listening with a screen-reader and we anticipate to give you the chance to fill out that kind.


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We can design options that meet a number of necessities by becoming a member of forces for the good thing about our web site guests.

For instance, a easy one-level navigation menu with out submenus can profit accessibility finest practices, consumer expertise, and website positioning by presenting a versatile web page construction conveying data and relationships by deep hyperlinks, textual content, and content material.

We anticipate that prime search outcomes will take us to what we want and wish.

The bartender noticed proof of a profitable web site when it arrived with a crowd of joyful clients.

Planning for Website Accessibility

Today’s digital advertising and marketing methods could embody usability metrics as a result of they contribute to conversions and revenue. It’s a logical union.

Technical website positioning is a complicated apply that features the data structure, as effectively, as a result of no home could be constructed with out a strong basis and exact plans for what goes the place and why.

Conversions and website positioning are married with phrases. Every key phrase placement counts, as do phrase decisions for hyperlink anchor textual content.


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By the time you attain this stage, you start to see the dance of relationships between varied abilities.

Your copywriter is as vital as your graphics designer, and everybody wants to be lunching with builders and QA engineers.

The lacking piece from the plan is often accessibility.

For the riddle, what if the bartender was deaf or blind?

How about if the bartender had a hidden incapacity?

Was accessibility a part of any plans for the consumer expertise of somebody with a incapacity?

Does Having an Accessible Website Improve Rank in Search Engines?

First, let’s tackle the inaccurate data.

Using an accessibility overlay or widget doesn’t present an help for search engines like google.

They don’t assist folks with disabilities, both.

These apps intervene with settings already in place by individuals who want to regulate their pc gadgets to make them extra user-friendly and responsive to their wants.

Automation sends a message to individuals with disabilities that say there is no such thing as a plan to embody them.


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Rather than investing in constructing an accessible web site, they gamble that they won’t face litigation.

According to a current examine, over 250 companies that invested in accessibility widgets or overlays had been nonetheless sued.

AI for digital accessibility is up for debate.

We are a good distance off from instructing machines to suppose as we do.  The human mind is exclusive.

The finest manner to perceive the limitations of accessibility and AI for search engines like google is to work with individuals with disabilities.

An individual with dementia struggles to recall what they simply learn, so web page format and content material writing are vital components.

Stroke victims have problem talking and typing.

People with listening to impairments want transcripts, which isn’t a part of most routines for corporations that produce video content material.

Google invitations volunteers with disabilities for consumer testing.

Alt textual content, even when completed appropriately, shouldn’t be highly effective sufficient to outrank a web page optimized by an website positioning.

The magic happens contained in the code when combining website positioning, consumer expertise, and accessibility. Each has its personal mission.


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All three instruct internet web page content material to reply to machines and folks. Developers proceed to study and apply enhancements.

We’re fortunate to sustain with the modifications in digital expertise, which matches again to my advice for hiring a tribe of execs from diversified backgrounds.

The well-built digital property stands a a lot better likelihood of rating effectively.

Accessibility as User Experience

Some internet accessibility Web Content Accessibility Guidelines success standards and finest practices have traditionally been a part of usability testing.

The best success standards to take a look at and remediate are shade contrasts and alt textual content for photographs.

Why are colours vital to consumer expertise?

We reply to colours with emotional responses and cultural conditioning.

So crimson means cease (in some international locations solely), or a warning.

Green is related to go, cash, and nature.

Blue is calming, like the ocean.

Does this matter to somebody who’s shade blind or visually impaired?

Since males are extra typically shade blind than ladies, an internet site that targets males might want to take into account their shade decisions.


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Color contrasts matter for sight-impaired individuals who want readability and crisp foreground and background colours for studying, particularly in varied lighting.

Color contrasts are required to meet the aforementioned WCAG necessities. They are place to begin if you’re new to accessibility and all for supporting advertising and marketing efforts.

Begin by making webpages simple to see and browse.

Make pages easy to read and understand to improve accessibility.

There are some ways to take a look at shade contrasts. Two of my favorites are:


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Alt Text for Images

Most website positioning professionals are conscious that alt textual content is readable by search engines like google and subsequently used to insert key phrases.

It have to be completed with considerate consideration not solely as a result of key phrase stuffing places your webpage in danger, however as a result of folks could hear to the alt textual content, too, with a display screen reader.

Images have a objective for visible customers in addition to blind customers. For this purpose, automating the creation of alt textual content could possibly be unkind to an individual with disabilities.

An alt attribute is so vital to photographs that Twitter, Medium, and different social platforms have added the flexibility to add alt textual content to photographs.

There are guidelines for deciding how to implement alt attributes. I like to recommend following An Alt Decision Tree.

More importantly is context, which shouldn’t be left up to automation.


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If you suppose you understand how to add alt textual content to your photographs, I really useful studying Context is the most critical aspect of alt-text everyone seems to miss.

“Two an identical photographs can have completely different alt-text approaches relying on the context.“

– Sheri Byrne Haber, CPACC Certified Accessibility skilled

Accessibility & Marketing

It takes a tribe of individuals with complementary abilities to elevate an internet site.

Some digital advertising and marketing businesses are studying this the onerous manner when a shopper faces an ADA lawsuit or receives a requirement letter.

Common obstacles triggering accessibility complaints embody the lack to full a activity reminiscent of filling out a kind, viewing a video, or buying a product utilizing a display screen reader.

Add accessibility to your advertising and marketing plan to set your organization other than those that are much less invested of their shoppers’ success.

If you conduct a usability evaluate, add in accessibility compliance testing performed by an authorized accessibility specialist.

The further outcomes of usability and accessibility audits present alternatives for repairing points with the consumer interface, navigation, and performance, in addition to figuring out the place folks with disabilities is probably not ready to use the web site.


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Who are your web site guests?

What sorts of pc gadgets do they use?

Is the web site examined with display screen readers or assistive gadgets that individuals with disabilities depend upon?

Are there distractions that make studying content material troublesome?

Why is accessibility an important consideration for marketing?

  1. 10 – 20% of the worldwide inhabitants has a incapacity.
  2. Disabilities usually are not at all times apparent or mentioned.
  3. Persons with disabilities use the online to do the identical actions as everybody else.
  4. Some international locations require accessibility requirements because the regulation.
  5. Accessibility is a civil proper.

“So, you’re saying each meet a unique bar, however on the similar bar?” John Mueller requested me on Twitter.

I’m saying it’s time to elevate the bar.

More Resources:


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Image Credits

All screenshots taken by creator, February 2021

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