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5 After Sales Marketing Techniques To Improve Customer Retention

Apr 15, 2008
It's been widely reported that some website owners are facing the threat of legal action because they do not offer a website that is easily accessible for disabled people. But, even ignoring the legal threat, it is good business practice to ensure that your pages are accessible for anybody that wishes to view them. Another aspect of accessibility is that different page visitors may use different browsers, operating systems, screen formats, and have different Internet connections speeds - while many of us have turned to Broadband speeds, there is still a large number of people using a modem connection.

1 - Provide textual alternatives to non-textual items. It's been good practice to include Alt text for images for some time, but the advance of Internet technologies means that images are only a small part of the overall picture. Video, audio, and animations as well as scripts, buttons, and even bullets should have an alternative.

2 - Do you use colors that are easily read? Some people have problems with specific colors or color combinations and offering your page in a variety of schemes or skins is becoming more popular. Doing so helps to overcome the problem and it generally allows visitors to personalize your website.

3 - Do text links use anchor text that makes sense when read through without the link in place? For example, if you were to use "click" as linking text then the paragraph or sentence that includes this link would not make sense.

4 - Page formatting should make your page easy to understand and, therefore, accessible. Good navigation is an absolute necessity and if you use image buttons as part of your navigation then you need to provide a textual alternative. Headings, lists, and other formatting rules should be applied where necessary to make the content easy to read.

5 - Scripts and web applications or widgets may not be displayed on all computers. Some browsers have Java elements and other page elements disabled. Provide alternative content for those users that disable these features otherwise the page will become meaningless.

6 - Manually check your pages. See how long they take to load and whether the important elements load quickly enough. See how easy navigation is and whether improvements could be made to facilitate greater levels of accessibility. Check that tables and frames make sense and are well labeled.

7 - Validate the markup of your content using a validation tool or service. These check your markup language to find any errors or typos that may have been made. Errors may not be immediately obvious when you manually check a page but may become more than obvious when a surfer goes about their regular business on your website.

8 - Check your site using different browsers, screen resolutions, and operating systems. Check as many alternatives as possible, and ask others to do the same for you. This will help to ensure that your pages are easily accessible for any visitor regardless of their setup and connection.

Providing Accessibility For All

Accessibility is a big part of design and development. If you develop and maintain your own website then it is down to you to ensure that it remains accessible for as many visitors as possible. By checking the tips above it should ensure that more people are able to access more of your content, therefore improving your accessibility level.
About the Author
Omaro Ailoch is a senior software engineer, an internet marketing expert, and the founder of OC IT Services http://www.ocitservices.com/ a highly skilled California based web development, design, and search engine optimization firm. OC IT Services has successfully improved ROI for small to large businesses and corporations through the successful streamlining of core business practices and the implementation of SEO strategies.
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