WordPress Accessibility

Useful links on improving the accessibility of your Wordpress site.

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I love WordPress. Its intuitive, easy to use, beautiful, and free. Sadly, it is not known for it’s accessibility…

As I am not a web developer, I haven’t crafted my own blog out of HTML and CSS with love and joy. Instead, I have been writing ALT tags and hierarchy into my code to make it as accessible as possible. Recently, I started looking into plug-ins to increase the accessibility of my many WordPress blogs. To my surprise, plug-ins are only available to WordPress.org sites – which requires you to have a unique URL and web hosting. So, I created another blog, a travel site in reaction to the success of my China blog, through WordPress.org to utilize WordPress’ accessibility options.

Here are some helpful links to guide you through the process:

The WordPress.org Process

To help you along in setting up your own WordPress.org site, here is step-by-step directions and documentation from setting up my own WordPress.org blog, The Black Beret Abroad.

Initial Set-Up

  1. Set-up a location for your WordPress (WP) installation (if it is a new website then you will need to arrange a domain and hosting).
  2. Decide whether your entire site will be WP or just a part of it.
  3. Load WordPress on your server.
  4. Go to your control panel to determine which database to run WP in.
  5. Input necessary information.
  6. Administer your new WordPress site by going to domain.com/wp-admin (if the entire site is WP) or domain.com/wpfolder/wp-admin (if WP is only part of the site).
  7. Log into your unique URL (ie: http://yourwebsitename.com/wp-admin/) and enter password. (Troubleshooting note: If you get an Error 500 message like I did, contact your server provider and they can fix it for you. Once they’ve fixed it, clear your browser history and re-attempt to log-in.)

Wordpress.org login page

Installing the WP Accessibility Plugin

Wordpress folder on server

  1. Go to the folder on your server where your WordPress folder is.
  2. Click the ‘wp-content’ folder in your WordPress folder
  3. Upload the ‘wp-accessibility’ plugin (link to download the plugin) to your ‘wp-contents’ folder.
  4. Log into your WordPress.org account through a web browser.
  5. In the left hand bar you will see ‘Plugins’ between ‘Appearance’ and ‘Users’. Click it.
  6. You should see WP Accessibility in this list. Select ‘Activate’ – and ta da, it is activated!

    Wordpress Plugin page.

As always, suggestions and comments welcome below. Thanks!

Author: nchitty

Inclusive designer based out of Toronto.

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