10 Principles

The Ten Principles of Inclusive Web Design

Creating Beautiful, Usable & Accessible Websites

Inclusive Design is where innovation and imagination flourish. Meeting the needs of the widest variety of people does not inhibit creativity. It opens our minds and inspires excellence.

1. Equitable
Be welcoming, don't discriminate and engage with people. Create different user experiences and make certain they have equally valuable outcomes. Aesthetics matter.
2. Flexible
Provide options. Think who, how, why, what, where & when people will be using your website. Make sure there is choice for diverse users and maintain device independence.
3. Straightforward
Be obvious and not ambiguous. Make sure your website's features add value, not complexity. Remember, good design is as little design as possible.
4. Perceptible
Don't assume anything. Make sure your website's purpose is clear, its content, structure and sequence are meaningful and convey information to all of the senses.
5. Informative
Make sure people know where they are on your website and provide different ways for them to find what they're looking for. Be timely, predictable, uncomplicated and precise.
6. Preventative
Provide easy to follow instructions and gently guide users in interacting with your website. Help them to minimise errors when submitting data, through well considered form design.
7. Tolerant
Handle errors respectfully and indicate precisely what the error is, where it is and how to fix it. Remember to let people know the outcome.
8. Effortless
Don't make demands or place restrictions on your users. People should not have to work or think hard to find what they want on your website. Ensure it can be used efficiently and effectively.
9. Accommodating
Be approachable, uncluttered and give people room to manoeuvre. Make sure that your website is unobtrusive and can be accessed by different devices of all shapes and sizes.
10. Consistent
Follow standards, guidelines, conventions and best practices. Provide a familiar environment with memorable functionality.

© 05/2011 Sandi Wassmer. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 License.

Downloadable PDF

You can Download a PDF version of the Ten Principles here

If you want to read about real world examples of the principles in action, check out Sandi's latest article in .net magazine