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Providing a Usable and Accessible Banking Experience

To some, a bank’s front door is the website, which means the website needs to be as inclusive as the building itself.


  • Great Western Bank

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A bank’s ability to be accessible to all of its members is crucial to improving the overall customer experience.

But the accessibility of a bank doesn’t stop with the brick and mortar buildings. More than most, financial institutions like banks require a level of accessibility on the web equal to its financial protections.

For example, different background and link colors can cause issues in contrast for those who have difficulty seeing anything beyond “black text on white background,” so our design updates focused on adjusting the background colors and link colors to give an ADA-acceptable contrast to all elements on the site.

Additionally, we began to separate the editors’ experience from the rules of accessibility in order to make things easier for all involved. Different-sized headings often get used as design elements instead of as a way to show an “outline” to a screen reader. By separating out the design headings and actual heading functions, we can allow an editor to place headings out of order for a specific design aesthetic without completely confusing a screen reader.

Of course, accessibility goes beyond the design and structure of the site — there’s also an editorial aspect. For example, our testing was able to pull up a list of images that required alternate text. This list was tackled by Great Western Bank’s editorial team. They added alternate text to every image so, even without the ability to see images, the site is understandable to anyone.

Project results.

  • A home page accessibility score that shows no errors or contrast issues
  • Updated editor interfaces to help drive better editorial accessibility

Access Granted — Web Accessibility and Your Content (pdf)

Web accessibility is the practice of removing barriers for people with disabilities, specifically on your apps or websites. This handout, created alongside Woods Fuller Schultz & Smith P.C., helps provide some guidance around what you can do to bring your content up to speed.

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