Accessibility & Usability

In the context of a website "accessibility" refers to the practice of creating and maintaining a website such that all users can navigate and understand the information presented.

It is vital that all users, including those with disabilities, find a website usable--that is, they are able to use the website effectively and efficiently to meet their goals.

Part of maintaining a good website is being careful to avoid adding obstacles for users, regardless of their ability.

When building a site in Conductor, the Web Team considers a wide variety of accessibility and usability concerns as they make decisions about colors, typefaces, page layouts, features, styles and more.

Common Accessibility Concerns 


  • Color blindness: Using color alone to convey information may create problem for color blind users. Designers often use underlined text for links, as well as distinct colors.
  • Slight to moderate vision impairment: Calls for a larger minimum type size than one might think.
  • Blindness or severe vision impairment: Visitors may make use of screen readers to browse a website.
    • Images should have adequate alt text.
    • Headings styles should have a logical order.
    • Links should provide context (and never read “click here.”)


  • Video audio: If there are no captions for your video, the content may be of little use to hearing-impaired visitors.


  • Visitors may not be able to use a mouse and must rely on other means to navigate the website, making good and consistent headings, links, and images very important.
  • Visitors might struggle to control their devices well enough to locate small buttons on the page. Designers employ a certain minimum size for navigation and interactive elements.


  • Colloquial terms or jargon may be helpful to some of your audience, but you may be adding confusion for a significant percentage of users. Speaking in plain terms is most often the best way to help users accomplish their goals.
  • If using icons, make sure they are generally accepted images and that they make sense in context.