We’re excited to welcome Equalize Digital back as a sponsor this year and to have several of their team members volunteer to help organize the event. Read on to learn more about Equalize Digital.
About Equalize Digital
Equalize Digital is a Certified B Corporation striving to build a world where all people have equal access to information, products, and tools on the web, regardless of ability.
Equalize Digital has a WordPress plugin, Accessibility Checker. The plugin is an automated accessibility scanning tool that helps WordPress websites become and stay accessible and is used by websites of all sizes from NASA to universities and small personal blogs.
Equalize Digital is proud to support WordPress Accessibility Day as part of the organizing team and sponsor. They’re also the team behind the official WordPress Accessibility Meetup.
Making WordPress Websites More Accessible
Equalize Digital Accessibility Checker is a plugin that allows WordPress users to dynamically scan, monitor, and report on the accessibility status of their websites in real-time as content, themes, and plugins are updated. Accessibility Checker provides native reports on the post-edit screen so content managers can identify and resolve problems before they hit publish.
With Accessibility Checker, there’s no waiting for a weekly scan to run, and then having to go back to fix issues on already published pages. There are also no per-page fees.
Accessibility Checker has a free version available, that allows for unlimited scanning of posts and pages. When the Equalize Digital team was first creating the plugin, their goal was to develop a tool that makes accessibility governance easier and more affordable, even for very small businesses and non-monetized sites.
Why Equalize Digital Supports WordPress Accessibility Day
Equalize Digital’s mission is focused on building a more accessible web that works for everyone, regardless of ability. Education is a core part of their offerings as a Certified B Corporation, and Equalize Digital’s team is committed to giving back to the WordPress community – largely because of how much their founders, Amber and Chris Hinds and Steve Jones, have benefited from others in the WordPress community openly sharing their knowledge.
Equalize Digital wants to pay forward that knowledge sharing, and sponsoring WordPress Accessibility Day and supporting it through volunteering is part of how they do it.
We truly believe in the mission of WordPress Accessibility Day: bringing free accessibility education to a global community. We love that the event takes place over 24 hours so that there are always talks happening during business hours not matter where you’re located in the world, and we love that there is a priority placed on selecting diverse speakers, including people with disabilities, and paying them for their time.Amber Hinds, CEO, Equalize Digital
Improving Accessibility One Step at a Time
In addition to supporting others in making their WordPress websites more accessible, Equalize Digital continues to focus on their own website’s accessibility.
In 2020, they rebranded their company, and at that time, they put intentional effort into making their color palette more accessible by choosing higher contrast colors and completely rebuilt their website with an eye for accessibility. While building a more accessible site, the Equalize Digital team used a combination of automated testing and manual testing.
Initially, doing this additional accessibility testing on their content took a lot of time, says, Chris Hinds, Equalize Digital’s COO. But as their knowledge has grown and they put processes in place to ensure that new posts and pages are published without accessibility problems, they’ve found that it doesn’t add too much time to make sure the content we’re publishing is accessible – just 5-10 additional minutes per page, and really not much more than they spend ensuring content is SEO optimized.
If you’re just getting started, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, but don’t, says Amber:
Accessibility is a journey. Choose one thing to fix or focus on first and start there, then move on to the next thing. You don’t have to be perfect, you just need to get started.
We’re constantly evolving – earlier this year we put a bunch of effort into fixing our own website’s navigation menu. While it had been “technically accessible” and it didn’t have any Web Content Accessibility Guideline failures, we realized that it could be a lot more usable for screen reader and keyboard-only users, so we reworked it. We’ve build that same accessible nav into our starter theme, which means that every website we build with it is now that much more accessible.Amber Hinds
Special Offers for WordPress Accessibility Day Attendees
Equalize Digital is offering a 30% discount on their plugin to all WordPress Accessibility Day attendees. They’re also giving away a free Small Business license for Accessibility Checker, so head on over to Equalize Digital’s sponsor page to get all the details and enter for a chance to win.
More Accessibility Resources from Equalize Digital
Here are two additional ways you can keep learning about accessibility from Equalize Digital:
- Equalize Digital runs the official WordPress Accessibility Meetup. See recordings from the meetup with captions and full transcripts.
- Equalize Digital’s founders, Amber, Chris, and Steve, have a podcast, Accessibility Craft, where they talk about accessibility while drinking interesting craft beverages.