Accessibility gets real with BT’s MyDonate

Please note: as of 30th June 2019 MyDonate has closed. Visit the BT website for information about the closure of MyDonate

It’s over a decade since website accessibility became a legal requirement and yet more than 90% still exclude disabled people. Yet having an accessible website is not just about legal and moral obligation, it also makes good business sense as BT has discovered with its new online fundraising service, MyDonate.

The value of a more inclusive approach underpins AbilityNet’s usability accreditation, which has been awarded to BT’s MyDonate - a fundraising and donations platform which gives 100% of all donations commission-free directly to your charity of choice.

The ‘User Accredited’ badge is a graphic certification that you are committed to all your customers and have taken the appropriate steps to facilitate full access for everyone irrespective of their disability or the adaptive technology they use.

MyDonate Charities Manager is Christine Poole: "The virtual world has the scope to be fully inclusive which we have demonstrated with a site that has been tested by real end-users with a broad range of disabilities."

"The great thing about real life accessibility testing is that we’ve been able to work through the accessibility needs of fundraisers and donors to provide a simple yet efficient service which is open to more users. Put plainly - a more accessible service equals more donors which equals more money to charities and good causes."

Research shows that an accessible site can deliver a 35% ‘usability bonus’ for every visitor - a factor which translates directly into competitive advantage and time efficiency for the provider. The truth is that accessible sites are simply easier and more intuitive to use: they improve productivity for everyone.

However, adhering to the Equality Act (2010) and the global ‘gold standard’ of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) is not just a ‘box ticking’ exercise. With 12 million disabled people in the UK, a further 6 million with dyslexia and many millions more with a literacy or learning difficulty (a quarter of the population has a reading age of 14 or less), accessibility could be an issue for nearly half your visitors.

Says AbilityNet’s Head of Digital Inclusion: "It is inspiring to see an organisation take accessibility as seriously as BT and adopt such a clear sighted, pan-disability approach. We hope that by ensuring that MyDonate can be used by everyone regardless of any impairment, BT will help accessibility best practice become a benchmark industry-wide."