How to Create Accessible Sites in Duda

Options
visioncraft
visioncraft Member Posts: 157 Learner

Hi all,

We've been approached by a high-profile blind athlete, who would like us to create a new website for them. Their website gets quite a lot of traffic from users with different degrees of vision impairment, and we therefore need to make sure that their site is fully accessible.

  1. Is the code generated by Duda automagically compatible with screen readers and other assistive-technology devices? Are there any widgets that are "less accessible", and that we should avoid? Are there any special 'gotchas' we should be aware of when trying to develop an accessible site with Duda?
  2. Would you recommend we install a third-party app, like AudioEye? If so, which?
  3. Can a blind client use the Duda Editor to edit the content of their own site?

Any guidance and tips would be greatly appreciated.

Best Answer

  • the_duda_app_guy
    the_duda_app_guy Member Posts: 25 mod
    Answer ✓
    Options

    Hey @visioncraft and @Aj_Cre8 - I'd like to jump in and help shape this conversation and give more accurate information.

    First, I'll answer the questions directly and then get into a few of the comments to clarify some information.

    Is the code generated by Duda automagically compatible with screen readers and other assistive-technology devices? Are there any widgets that are "less accessible", and that we should avoid? Are there any special 'gotchas' we should be aware of when trying to develop an accessible site with Duda?

    Yes, standard screen reader technology will pick up the content of a website and read this back in an artificial voice. The problem when you don't use an accessibility tool is that the reader technology relies on you being 100% correct with header structure, how you structure the content, etc. which oftentimes we see being incorrect (people using lower-tier headers for smaller font instead of using an H1 than H2, but reducing font size).

    Would you recommend we install a third-party app, like AudioEye? If so, which?

    Yes, this gives you the "assurance" given that these solutions will help ensure the structure of the site is correct and make adjustments when it is not. Now here's where it gets tricky, not all accessibility solutions are the same. I'll get into that below…

    Can a blind client use the Duda Editor to edit the content of their own site?

    No, the Duda editor is inherently "drag & drop" which would be very tricky in providing an experience for someone who is visually challenged.


    Now, getting to the topic of AudioEye versus Userway versus AccessiBe.

    There are generally a few "types" of accessibility solutions: Overlays and those that actually "fix" the issues (AudioEye).

    Overlays are pretty self-explanatory. They add a layer to the website that changes aspects of the site purely in that layer being added to the site. Overlays do not fix the website and are often highly targeted by predatory law firms looking to bait websites into paying fines since the items are not truly fixed. There is also very little "protection" the overlays give you when it comes to being targeted in these lawsuites.

    On the other hand, tools like AudioEye and others automatically and manually (depending on the package) fix the issues on the website. Let's say you mislabel headers. An overlay will only change the headers on the overlay, but you are still at risk of the site not being in compliance with ADA standards.

    AudioEye would have actually gone in and fixed that issue at the source (either the template or the page itself).

    • Same as what @Aj_Cre8 said, there's a reason something is FREE versus costing money. Userway is a great tool and a great partner, but the use case is drastically different than something like AudioEye.


«1

Answers

  • Aj_Cre8
    Aj_Cre8 Member Posts: 673 MVP
    Options

    We use Accessibee!! Been a great tool!!

  • Aj_Cre8
    Aj_Cre8 Member Posts: 673 MVP
    Options

    As for the client editing the site, I wouldn't bank on Dudas editor being accessible for blind, seeing as how we need 3rd party tools to create ADA compliant sites!!

  • visioncraft
    visioncraft Member Posts: 157 Learner
    Options

    Hey, @Aj_Cre8 thank you for the tip about AccessiBe! I just had a look at their website, and it does look quite good — but it seems crazy expensive compared to AudioEye. Curious to know why you choose to go with AccessiBe: are there any compelling advantages?

  • Aj_Cre8
    Aj_Cre8 Member Posts: 673 MVP
    Options

    They are actually more affordable than Audio compared to what you get. The same price for Audioeye just gives you an overlay widget that doesn't actually change anything on the site. The accessibility of Accessibee actually changes the code of Duda sites to make it accessible. Lots of reasons. Keep doing some digging.

  • visioncraft
    visioncraft Member Posts: 157 Learner
    Options

    I've just spent several hours doing some comparative research between AudioEye, UserWay and AccessiBe. I've decided to recommend UserWay, because:

    • it is available in the Duda App Store, and integrates neatly into the client's Site Editor.
    • the plans offered in the Duda App Store have extremely generous discounts, when compared to the equivalent plans offered directly through the UserWay website - which allows the agency to add a reasonable markup, make a modest profit, and still save the client some money.
    • the plans are very generous and comparatively inexpensive, with the top-level plan, which allows for unlimited visits/month, priced at $50/month.
    • the level of customisation offered by the UserWay widget is fantastic, allowing us to reorder the UI elements to focus on specific diabilities that the site may target.
    • UserWay also provides a free, custom Accessibility Statement — even on the free plan (although it must be added to the site manually)

    Finally, while all the services offer a 'free accessibility scan' of a website, UserWay is the only one that provides a button that allows us to show the client immediately how their accessibility score would change if we install the widget — and that does make the sale easier.

    I hope this helps others. Any further suggestions, tip, trick and or guidance that anyone can offer in regards to making websites accessible with Duda would be extremely welcome.

  • Aj_Cre8
    Aj_Cre8 Member Posts: 673 MVP
    Options

    Lots of sites that use Userway get targeted for lawsuits in my experience because they don't actually make anything compliant, just as Audioeye.

  • visioncraft
    visioncraft Member Posts: 157 Learner
    Options

    @Aj_Cre8 from the information on their site, it seems they all function largely the same way — so I guess I must be overlooking something. Could you explain what is it that AccessiBe does that actually makes the site legally compliant, which the other 2 don't? Any information would be welcome.

  • Aj_Cre8
    Aj_Cre8 Member Posts: 673 MVP
    Options

    The other two (on the same price plan as accessible) only offer OVERLAYS. They don't actually alter anything on the site. Accessibe actually alters the site and the code output for accessibility tools. Also, Accessibee has yet to have a lawsuit against them that has won (according to their docs and their team). Userway and Audioeye free plans and even the ones above just place a widget overlay on the site. As mentioned accessibee will actually alter the websites code to make it complaint.

    I am not trying to stere you in any single direction. Just don't want you to use a subpar tool because it's free or a Duda App. I encourage you to hold this responsibility to your client as ultimately it is their responsibility to ensure their site is compliant.

  • visioncraft
    visioncraft Member Posts: 157 Learner
    Options

    Thank you for the explanation, @Aj_Cre8 — truly appreciated. Based on your description, I went back and double-checked the way that UserWay works compared to AccessiBe. I didn't bother to check AudioEye, but I believe our conclusion might be the same.

    It seems to me that the way all these services implement "on-the-fly" fixes on the website is the same: they provide us with a javascript that we add to the site, which 'watches' the rendered page on the browser, and evaluates it for transgressions. It then rewrites the live code on the browser, in order to remedy what it perceives to be 'transgressions' to the accessibility requirements. This may include things like changing the size of fonts, colours of objects, and even adding metadata and specific tag attributes that are needed for accessibility compliance - sometimes with the help of AI.

    Some plans also include additional extras, such as detailed reports on what the errors are that the script found on the page. Developers might then choose to correct these errors directly, manually, and also address errors that the automatic script is not able to 'fix' at runtime.

    In the case of UserWay, the FREE tier does not apply the fixes automagically: the visitor will get a widget on-screen that they can use to toggle and apply the fixes 'as needed'. The paid tiers all include auto-fixing, but also offer the widget for the user to fine-tune their experience — eg., if they want to make fonts bigger. UserWay also guarantees compliance with all the current, latest web accessibility standards, offers free Accessibility Statements for all, and even includes legal support in some plans. You can find more info on their FAQs.

    In the spirit of full disclosure, I haven't actually tried any of these tools yet, and my opinion is solely based on reading all the information provided online on each of their respective websites. But based on that information, UserWay does not seem like a 'subpar tool' compared to AccessiBe. Indeed, it looks quite refined, well integrated into Duda, and offers plans that are great value for money compared to the competition — so at this point it is probably worth trying…

    Again, if I misunderstood or overlooked something, do let me know — I always aim to get as much information as possible before making recommendations to our clients, so input from those with more experience is truly welcome.