AbilityNet ran a webinar with an SEO expert from a leading digital marketing agency to explore the connections between SEO and accessibility. The highly practical session offered top tips on getting SEO dividends from accessible websites and other digital content.
Search Engine Optimisaton (SEO) and accessibility are commonly understood concepts for anyone involved in web development, ecommerce or marketing. For many SEO is seen as an essential function for any business but accessibility is often viewed as ‘nice to have’, or worse an inconvenience - a legal tick box. Few people realise that paying attention to accessibility can deliver real SEO dividends: SEO brings more traffic to your website; accessibility is about opening your website up to the widest possible audience.
How accessibility can help with SEO
A key part of the process of optimising for accessibility is ensuring that your content is well crafted and properly tagged, which are also essential when optimising for search engines. Since Google and its fellow search engines focus on delivering the best results for users, tagged, crafted content will win every time with search engine bots. Given that the two fields share such fundamental aspects, just how much can optimising your website for accessibility deliver better SEO results?
In the first instance, opening your website up to a wider audience who otherwise might not be able to fully access your content increases the traffic moving through the site, thereby helping improve the authority of your site on search engines. By opening up for this audience you also increase potential for your content to be shared on social media and for backlinks to your site, both of which can be enormously effective in boosting your pages in search engine rankings.
Ask the experts
AbilityNet’s Head of Digital Inclusion Robin Christopherson is an expert in web accessibility and a firm advocate of the position that optimising your website for accessibility can go a long way towards helping to optimise the site for search engines.
We asked Robin and special guest Gerry White from leading SEO agency SiteVisibility to discuss the links between SEO and accessibility with real-life examples to show the many ways that the two fields are interlinked.