Last week we included an item about AccessiBe, an AI company that promises to make companies’ websites accessible within 48 hours. Our tester tried one website that uses AccessiBe and found it didn’t completely deliver on its promise for screen reader users. Matt Krieger, RDPFS board chair, did a little research and came upon this blog by Colleen Gratzer, an specialist in accessible design and branding. In Episode 60 of her blog, Creative Boost, “Overlays and Plugins Aren’t the Answer to Accessibility”, Gratzer notes: “When I was on a site with one vendor’s overlay, I couldn’t use the tab key to go through the page via the keyboard. I had to use the overlay’s keyboard functionality, which kept looping me in and out of that option. This is frustrating and makes for a poor user experience because it changes the way someone is used to getting around a site. Not only that, it’s requiring them to take an additional step to do so.” At many points in the blog, Gratzer’s findings mirror those of our own tester.
If you’ve used one of these quick accessibility overlays, plugins, or widgets, write us about your experience. With accessible websites a hot topic these days, we need to learn all we can.