Accessibility may not be the first thing neophytes think of when they launch an email marketing campaign. But seasoned email senders are studying it closely, judging by Accessibility in the Inbox, a study from Pathwire conducted by Ascend2.
Of the marketers polled, 57% have considered factors like color contrast, screen readers and ADA compliance during email production. Another 24% sometimes do so, and 19% do not.
But this varies by sector: of the B2C marketers surveyed, 64% consider email accessibility, versus 54% of B2B. And 26% of B2C sometimes assess it, as well as 23% of B2B. But 23% of B2B brands do not.
In addition, 65% of enterprise firms consider accessibility, compared to 42% of small businesses.
Why is this important?
“Among every email list are groups who tend to be forgotten and marginalized,” the study states. “This includes subscribers with various disabilities.”
Indeed, some of these individuals “rely on email to receive life-saving information,” it advises.
Many elements come into play. One is the need for alternative text for images. The primary purpose of alt text is to help “screen reading software interpret graphics for people with vision impairments or blindness,” the study notes
Then there’s color contrast — lack of it can hinder accessibility. Then there’s the language in subject lines.
Here’s how brands now support email accessibility:
Here are the situations they consider when designing emails for accessibility:
What tools are they using? They include:
The report is based on two surveys: of 92 email marketing professionals in April 2021, and 87 in June.