For e-commerce brands, web accessibility is not only the right thing to do - it’s a great decision for your business. With an accessible website, you can enhance user experience, reach a wider consumer market, improve your brand reputation, and mitigate legal risk. It’s a simple way to foster a more inclusive internet while enjoying an impressive array of business benefits.
accessiBe has already empowered thousands of e-commerce stores, including those on Shopify, to become accessible with accessWidget, our AI-powered accessibility solution. Now, we’ve made it easier than ever to install accessWidget on your online store with the launch of our app for Shopify. Read on to find out more about accessibility for e-commerce brands and our new app.
The E-commerce Accessibility Challenge
More than one in four American adults live with some form of disability. That’s a lot of people, and a lot of potential customers that e-commerce business owners shouldn’t overlook if they want to reach their full potential for success. This huge consumer market also has substantial purchasing power, with a combined post-tax disposable income estimated at nearly half a trillion dollars. What’s more, the community has high buying intent. According to a survey conducted by accessiBe in collaboration with Open Inclusion, consumers with disabilities planned to spend an estimated $22 billion in online purchases during the 2023 holiday season alone.
Unfortunately, less than 4% of websites are accessible to everyone. This can lead to serious challenges for consumers with disabilities, who often struggle to complete purchases using inaccessible websites.
In fact, accessiBe’s research revealed that two out of three consumers with disabilities have had difficulties making purchases through websites or apps. Online retailers and e-commerce brands that failed to make their websites accessible risked missing out on some $8 billion in sales during Q4 of 2023.
It’s a legal requirement, too
In addition to the benefits that implementing web accessibility solutions can unlock for your business, an accessible website also mitigates legal risk. Ensuring that your website is accessible to all users is a legal requirement around the world. Many governments, including those in the United States and Canada, have enacted legislation to help turn the internet into a more inclusive space.
Failure to adhere to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), which is the accepted international accessibility standard, and comply with laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act in the United States and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and Accessible Canada Act (ACA) in Canada can result in legal action. This tends to be quite costly for businesses.
E-commerce businesses with inaccessible websites are at a particularly high risk for lawsuits. An audit conducted by accessiBe of 100,000 leading e-commerce websites revealed that only 7.4% were compliant with legislation and met accessibility standards. In addition, 82% of digital accessibility lawsuits in 2023 targeted the e-commerce sector. E-commerce business owners should therefore take extra care to make sure their websites are accessible.
A Seamless Solution
One of the main barriers to a more accessible internet is lack of awareness. A recent accessiBe study found that only 25% of business owners and company leaders are able to accurately define web accessibility, highlighting a need for more visibility when it comes to accessibility solutions.
To address this lack of awareness and create a more inclusive online shopping experience for all consumers, accessiBe has developed a web accessibility app for Shopify. By offering a seamless accessibility solution in the Shopify app store, accessiBe is increasing its visibility and bringing accessibility to more e-commerce businesses.
Web Accessibility by accessiBe on Shopify
Shopify is the leading e-commerce platform for merchants who sell products online. It’s popular in large part thanks to its ease of use, customizability, and efficiency. While Shopify provides guidelines for building an accessible online store, it’s still merchants’ responsibility to offer an inclusive shopping experience for everyone.
That’s where we come in. accessiBe provides an ecosystem of accessibility solutions designed to meet every business where they are on their accessibility journey. Now, our app for Shopify makes our popular AI-powered web accessibility solution, accessWidget, even easier to install on your Shopify store.
Simply head over to the Shopify app store, search for Web Accessibility by accessiBe, and follow the instructions. Or, click this link to go directly to the Shopify app page.
When you add accessWidget to your Shopify store, it uses advanced AI technology to scan your site, find accessibility issues, and automatically remediate them in real time. It then conducts regular scans to help maintain accessibility even as you update your website content.
You receive a built-in accessibility certification and statement showing your ongoing compliance efforts. The widget does not impact loading times and is adjustable, so you can tailor it to your unique brand look. You can rest easy knowing that accessWidget is built with disability community input and is trusted by over 200,000 websites.
Boost Your E-commerce Business’s Potential
With the introduction of our app for Shopify, accessiBe is taking another step toward streamlining web accessibility for e-commerce sellers. Merchants can now open their digital front doors to all consumers regardless of their ability, mitigate legal risk, and reap the business benefits of an accessible website without ever leaving Shopify.