Is Your Website Catering To People With Accessibility Needs?

Digital Health Co’s new plugin is here to help make your business more inclusive.

While many business owners are careful to consider whether the physical spaces of their venues are equipped with appropriate accessibility aids, the same care isn’t always extended to a business’s website.

Considering this is often the first port of call for clients looking to book services, it’s crucial to ensure websites are friendly to those with accessibility needs as well. 

Enter: Digital Health Co.

This new website plugin is designed to assist clients with all kinds of accessibility needs ensuring that everyone – regardless of whether they may have a disability – can access, view, read, and understand the information provided.

“Most beauty businesses have a website to attract clients and generate bookings online. The plugin is aimed at those clients, or more specifically, to not cast out a portion of those clients: The elderly woman with limited mobility, the working girl who has dyslexia, or the new mum with visual impairments,” Digital Health Co’s Founder and Director, Marnina Diprose tells SPA+CLINIC.

“Anyone walking through the doors of a salon can have a disability, and making a website accessible ensures [everyone] can book a treatment online just as easily. With the plugin, we hope to educate business owners about the importance of inclusivity online and the power a website can have for their business when it is designed with their clients in mind,” says Diprose.

Why is website accessibility important?

One word: Inclusivity. Having an accessible website and booking platform means you’ll be making your business much more inclusive. Making sure websites are accessible plays a huge role in helping us collectively move towards a fairer and more equal society.

An accessible website will also open your doors to serving a much wider percentage of Australia’s population (and bringing in extra clients for your business). Considering 17.8% of females and 17.6% of males in Australia have a disability (according to The Australian Network on Disability), that’s a huge amount of extra people you could be serving with an accessible website.

“Things like visual and hearing impairments, physical limitations, photosensitivity and cognitive disabilities may provide an inability to view images, click on buttons, or read copy. The level of accessibility of a website can directly affect their experience and results in missed bookings for salons and clinics. Making a website accessible means that not only, a business can be attentive to their clients’ needs, but also increase their conversion rate,” says Diprose.

Digital Health Co’s accessibility plugin helps provide everyone with access to your business’s website and services.

So, how does Digital Health Co work?

Digital Health Co’s accessibility plugin ‘pops up’ as a widget – similar to the chatbot function that often appears on many websites.

“Someone with special needs or disability will be familiar with the ‘human’ symbol. When clicked on, a window will pop up with a set of settings: Typography, colour contrast, font size, and colour combination. Someone with a disability adjusts those to perceive and understand the copy and the call to action better. The widget can be accessed from any device,” explains Diprose.

What prompted the development of the Digital Health Co accessibility plugin?

After 10 years in the spa, aesthetic and dermal industries, Diprose understood all too well that business owners often don’t have enough hours in the day to work on websites, marketing and other areas outside the hecticness of day-to-day running procedures. 

In response to this, Diprose created Digital Health Co – a boutique agency serving the beauty and aesthetic worlds. Besides the accessibility plugin, Digital Health Co also offers sustainability and website audits, plus other tools to help business owners deliver more value and better service to their clients. “Overall, [we] help a business truly shine online,” says Diprose.

“We felt it was our responsibility to bring about the conversation of inclusivity and sustainability online. Offering solutions that are simple to implement and affordable ensures businesses can take actionable steps to serve their wider community. More and more salon and clinic owners are becoming increasingly mindful of ensuring their bricks and mortar space meets the accessibility needs of their clients, however, we identified that online this conversation and implementation is virtually non-existent,” says Diprose.

What’s the cost of Digital Health Co?

The Digital Health Co plugin is available via a monthly subscription of $29. The widget can also be customised to align with each business’s brand colours. “It offers accessibility without compromising on a website’s aesthetic,” says Diprose.

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