The financial sector has faced many economic storms in recent years. Against a backdrop of unpredictability and volatility, banks are now identifying ways to respond to a fluctuating global economy. How can banks plan a smooth path forward to foster customer trust and loyalty to maximize business value? And why is prioritizing online banking accessibility an increasingly important way to maintain competitive edge?
Our blog will explore the importance of digital accessibility in the banking industry and will give you actionable insights on how to improve digital banking services for all customers.
3 Benefits of Online Digital Banking
Digital banking has revolutionized the banking industry, providing customers with a myriad of benefits. In the past few years, we’ve seen a huge uptick in the adoption of online banking, bringing it to the forefront of the banking business. It has changed the game for the banking sector by offering greater levels of:
Digitalization in banking is helping people control their finances in ways that were not previously possible with traditional banking processes. With online banking, customers are presented with 24/7 access to their finances.
No longer do people need to visit their bricks and mortar banks to deposit checks, check balances or transfer funds etc. People can now access their accounts from anywhere, carrying out their banking from the comfort of their homes, with speed and efficiency.
Banks have always been under the constant threat of security breaches and digital banking presents the same challenges. To tackle these threats, banks have implemented several security measures. From multi-factor authentication to biometric features such as fingerprint, facial or voice recognition, these measures have added extra layers to security across digital banking.
Although digital banking offers numerous advantages, a significant portion of society experiences obstacles to accessing the convenience, security and accessibility it provides.
According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s report on the American Community Survey (ACS), 1 in 5 people with disabilities are in the US alone. The banks that prioritize online banking accessibility will be the ones that generate the greatest long-term business value.
The Legal Requirements of Online Banking Accessibility
It’s important for banks to be aware that while making web content and services accessible to everyone is an important ethical and social responsibility, digital banking accessibility is also a legal requirement.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), requires that people with disabilities have equal access to goods and services, including those provided across the digital space. All businesses, including those in the banking industry, are under legal obligation to make reasonable accommodations to ensure that people with disabilities can access their products and services.
Furthermore, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), a widely recognized industry standard for web accessibility, has been created to help make the web more inclusive for people with disabilities. Its set of guidelines help businesses remove barriers for people with a range of disabilities. Here are some ways that you can become more legally compliant and inclusive:
Make Text Size Variable
Making sure that your text size is adjustable is important for web accessibility because it allows users to personalize their browsing experience to meet their specific needs and preferences. For individuals with visual impairments or other disabilities, being able to enlarge text can be essential for accessing information on the web.
Add ‘Good’ Alt Text
Alt text describes image content for people with vision-related impairments, including people who use assistive tech such as screen readers or Braille displays. So what makes ‘good’ alt text’? Writing succinct, clear and specific alt text to describe any images on your digital banking website or app will be a significant step towards becoming a bank that offers online banking accessibility.
Make Images of Text Customizable
The text on your banking website or mobile app should clearly communicate the pages’ information. The image of text should be customizable, where users can control the size of font, line spacing, alignment, font family for example, to suit their users’ requirements and expectations,
Make Your Headings Descriptive
When creating web content, it’s important to make your section headings descriptive. This means that your headings should accurately describe what that section is about, so that users can get an idea of what the content is all about just by looking at the headings. This helps people find what they need more easily.
Test For Accessibility Gaps
What are your site’s main accessibility issues? What caused these issues? How can you fix these banking accessibility gaps? An accessibility audit can show you any barriers your users encounter. You will then be able to fix these obstacles which will help to promote positive brand perception, foster a sense of trust among your customers and boost customer loyalty.
UserWay: Online Banking Accessibility Without Barriers
UserWay’s mission is to make the digital world accessible to people of all abilities. With a full suite of AI tools, solutions and legal services, UserWay can help you make your digital banking platforms more inclusive. Taking advantage of these online banking accessibility tools will make your mobile apps and websites welcoming for more of your customers, driving revenue for you and improving the user experience.
Ready to rethink your online banking accessibility practices? Book a demo today.
Is our online banking compliant with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)?
We recommend you conduct an accessibility audit to identify and address any compliance issues and barriers to your banking websites and apps. Not sure where to start? Read more about the benefits of accessibility audits and how they can help you move closer to conformance with legal regulations and guidelines.
Which elements of our website and mobile app are causing accessibility barriers for our users?
Every banking website and mobile app is different so team up with accessibility experts who can do the heavy lifting for you. At UserWay, we can scan your digital content including your videos, images and alt text to identify the areas that need attention and, with a single line of code, our automated AI-powered full suite of tools and services, we can help you remove existing barriers and get closer to compliance.
Can my in-house team make our website and mobile banking app accessible?
Of course, but as a well established institution, this is likely to be a complex and resource-heavy task. Web accessibility can be a highly technical arena and ensuring compliance with accessibility standards requires specialized knowledge and expertise. By partnering with an accessibility expert, you can create a more inclusive and equitable online presence, and avoid legal liabilities and reputational damage that can result from non-compliance with accessibility requirements.