Before going into the details about how to create a website with universal design experience, we will first discuss about What is universal design? And the importance of creating a website having universal design UX.
What is universal design?
Universal design describes a set of considerations made to ensure that a product, service, and/or environment is usable by everyone, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.
“Universal Design” aims to extend standard design principles to include people of all ages and abilities, but remains at the level of generality, so it does not address all the specific needs of any particular disability.
Universal design is based on principles, and has guidelines that allow organizations to be tested and rated for certain levels of accessibility.
The Importance of Universal Design
Now a days business is absolutely customer-focused and where everything depends on what the customer wants or needs. Web design is the visual interaction in this process and it must not stay behind.
UX is every bit as essential as the aesthetic components of a website. You could have the best looking online platform or app on the market, but if customers cannot quickly learn how to utilize it, they will leave it behind.
For intricate or in-depth websites, it is especially valuable, because the target audience does need to be able to learn how to navigate online content as quickly as possible. If the need for planned and carefully thought out UX approaches is not acknowledged, it is likely that a website will become untidy, chaotic, and overly difficult to navigate.
The importance of UX is even bigger for young businesses and start up enterprises, because they usually lack a robust reputation to fall back on. In fact, their chance at future success is generally pinned on the quality of their online platforms, as they provide potential customers with an enduring first impression.
Yet, the same principle can be associated with businesses who operate only small budgets. If you get your UX approaches right, they can be used to boost the speed of growth and expansion, making for larger budgets in the future. The truth is that a user makes the decision to accept or reject an online app or resource within mere seconds – you have to grab the attention fast, and keep hold of it.
Before jumping into the action steps, lets first discuss about the basic principles of a universal design.
Principles of Universal Design
Principle 1: Equitable Use
“The design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities.”
Principle 2: Flexibility in Use
“The design accommodates a wide range of individual preferences and abilities.”
Principle 3: Simple and Intuitive Use
“Use of the design is easy to understand, regardless of the user's experience, knowledge, language skills, or current concentration level.”
Principle 4: Perceptible Information
“The design communicates necessary information effectively to the user, regardless of ambient conditions or the user's sensory abilities.”
Principle 5: Tolerance for Error
“The design minimizes hazards and the adverse consequences of accidental or unintended actions.”
Guidelines for "Creating a website with universal design experience for users"
1.Unique value proposition : Creating a great first impression is key, but making the customer realize that what you offer merits their full attention is equally important.
1.Minimize repetitive actions.
2.Minimize sustained physical effort.
3.Facilitate the user's accuracy and precision.
4.Eliminate unnecessary complexity.
5.Be consistent with user expectations and intuition.
6.Provide effective prompting and feedback during and after task completion.
7.Provisions for privacy, security, and safety should be equally available to all users.
8.Provide compatibility with a variety of techniques or devices that people with sensory limitations use.
9.Alternative routes into the content, via both a scrolling view and a grid view
10.Call to action (CTA) : Call-to-action buttons should go beyond being attractive and fitting the overall design of the website. After all, their main purpose is to get your visitors to do something.
2.Location: Eye tracking research shows that above-the-fold elements attract the most attention. Eyetrack III studies also found that the upper left of the page is where the eyes often fixate first before going left to right, then further down the page
1.Maximize "legibility" of essential information.
2.Provide adequate contrast between essential information and its surroundings.
3.Accommodate right- or left-handed access and use.
4.Provide choice in methods of use.
5.Arrange elements so as to minimize hazards and errors: most used elements, most accessible, with hazardous elements eliminated, isolated, or shielded.
6.Arrange information to be consistent with its importance.
3.Visual illustration : “show, don’t tell” : Harnessing the power of visual information is a primary ingredient in connecting with your audience. This is anchored to the fact that our brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than plain text.
1.A chart, plotting data using just points.
2.A slider, combining a point and a line.
3.Differentiate elements in ways that can be described (i.e., make it easy to give instructions or directions).
4.Make the design appealing to all users.
5.Use different modes (pictorial, verbal, tactile) for redundant presentation of essential information.
6.A considered color palette which affords each featured guitar its own distinctive look and feel.
7.Improve accessibility, by considering contrast between the foreground and background colors; and Improve usability, through a considered typographic hierarchy.
1.Provide adaptability to the user's pace.
2.Provide the same means of use for all users: identical whenever possible, equivalent when not.
3.Accommodate a wide range of literacy and language skills.
4.Start with the information your users absolutely need and ensure this is right up front; Provide additional information that’s helpful, but not critical; and Close with the ‘nice to have’ information (for those readers who stuck with you until the bitter end!).
1.Accommodate variations in hand and grip size.
2.Provide a clear line of sight to important elements for any seated or standing user.
1.Provide fail-safe features.
2.Provide warnings about hazards and errors.