Jon’s In Waikiki (AKA The Waikiki Marketer)

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Web Usability Takes Target to Court

October 11th, 2007 · No Comments

Target is being taken to court. Is it because of employee/employer issues? No. Is it because of unsafe products they sold? No. Is it because of alleged discrimination against a customer? No, but you’re getting warmer.

The National Federation of the Blind is taking Target to court over their web site. Specifically, the fact that they feel Target’s web site is not accessible to the site-impaired. It’s a case that could affect retailers everywhere. After all, every store and every business has a web site.

What this all boils down to is Web Usability & Accessibility – making and constructing your web site so it is easy to understand and to navigate. Not only by the blind, but by everyone. It’s a major point that many businesses miss. And that affects their profits more than they think.

Making your web site usable and accessible isn’t the same as adding a wheelchair ramp outside your shop. It’s much more than that. Usability and accessibility ultimately greases the slide customers ride from entering your store down into the Checkout line. If you can’t get behind it just from a legal obligation, surely you will appreciate it if you understand that it will affect your bottom line. For the better.

Not only does usability open the site fully to all your customer – it also will help your SEO efforts. After all, feeding content clearly to your visitors should also make it easier for search engine bots to collect and understand it as well. It’s a win-win all around.

The implications of Target’s case aren’t clear yet. But, requiring businesses to improve their site’s usability might be one of the few things the government could get completely right.

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