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Home > Accessible Web Services > Why Be Accessible : The Business Case

Business Reasons for Standards Compliance and Accessibility

1. An accessible website will allow you to reach disabled internet users of which there are 8.7 million with an annual spend of £40 billion. Think about that demographic for a moment. There may be a barrier preventing 8.7 million people accessing your products and services. We can remove that barrier.

2. An accessible website will also benefit non-disabled users. Key to accessible web design is making a website easy to use and intuitive to navigate. By following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines you will improve the usability of your website. That's good news for everyone.

This includes making the site available to users of alternative devices, such as mobile phones and PDA's. Standards compliant pages can be accessed through a variety of different kinds of devices rather than only a traditional graphical desk-top browser.

3. A website designed in XHTML and CSS will invariably be smaller than a 'table based' equivalent. Good news for your users as it will be faster to download. And if you have a large website, and pay for bandwidth, very good news for you. A web page that is 6K instead of 10K doesn't sound too impressive but take that 40% reduction and multiply it across your entire site and your annual spend on bandwidth.

4. If you make your website Standards Compliant then it could cost you less money to maintain and develop.

A bold statement indeed. Have you tried the style-switcher on this website? It's included on the footer of every page. One click changes the appearance of the site. Try changing the style but remember, each time you are viewing exactly the same page - only the style sheet has changed. This is possible because this is a Standards Compliant website, written using valid XHTML and valid CSS.

Not only is a Standards Compliant website easier to update, it will almost certainly cost less the next time a re-design or graphical touch up is needed. Change one stylesheet and update the appearance of the entire website.