The Business Case for Web Accessibility

By UsableNet on Aug 2, 2023
Topics: Web Accessibility



Global awareness of disability has grown significantly in recent years, as has the need for accessibility services in all areas, particularly for the all-encompassing and growing role that the internet plays in our lives. In 2023, your business case for web accessibility couldn’t be stronger.

 The reasons for this are plentiful but can be simplified into three key areas.

Web Accessibility Statistics You Should Know

Numbers don’t lie, and those associated with disability are quite striking.

  • Over a billion people are estimated to live with some form of disability, which can include blindness, deafness, and a variety of others. This corresponds to about 15 percent of the world's population.
  • One in four U.S. adults—over 61 million Americans—have a disability that impacts major life activities.
  • About 217 million people worldwide have moderate to severe vision impairment, which is expected to triple from 36 million to 115 million by 2050. In addition, 826 million people live with a near-vision impairment.
  • The average person with a disability can expect to spend eight years, or 11.5 percent of their life, actively managing their disability.
  • Approximately 40 percent of adults age 65 and up have one or more disabilities. By 2035, there will be 78 million adults in this age range or approximately 20 percent of the U.S. population.

Don't underestimate the spending power of people with disabilities

People with disabilities spend a colossal half-trillion dollars annually, a number that should bring every business to sharp attention. The population of the United Kingdom that identifies as living with a disability spends over $120 billion annually.

Despite these compelling figures, 73 percent of the people in the U.K. spending these incredible amounts of money are unable to complete basic transactions on more than a quarter of the websites they visit, according to a 2016 survey.

  • Seventy-one percent leave the site (and revenue on the table).
  • Eighty-six percent encounter difficulty even when they use assistive software.
  • Perhaps most importantly, 82 percent say they would return often and spend more with a company that provides an accessible online experience.

See our full guide on web and app accessibility. >>

Lawsuits can be costly financially and to your reputation 

When websites aren’t compliant with ADA standards, customers notice and brands pay the price, legally and financially. If, after reading the statistics above, you still have reservations, consider the following:

  • In the last five years, we counted more than 16,000 digital accessibility claims. These numbers are only ADA claims filed at the federal or state level and do not include pre-lawsuit legal actions, like demand letters. This year, we will likely see over 4000 lawsuits again. 

  • These suits are expensive and cost companies between $15,000 and $100,000, which does not include internal costs to complete accessibility remediation.

  • When Dominos tried to fight a lawsuit publicly from a blind customer, the dispute was featured on mainstream sites like CNBC. This is likely not the way you want your brand to be known in 2023 when customers say corporate responsibility influences their buying decisions.  

Read more about why digital accessibility falls under the ADA and Key Cases- Download your copy of "A Primer on ADA and Digital Accessibility."

Fix the Problem, Grow Your Business

While there are surely no good reasons to ignore your site’s potential accessibility issues, there are many great ones to take immediate action. These include:

  • Brand Integrity. People share experiences—good and bad—with their social circle and the larger world. Take a proactive stance on web accessibility and increase the chances that your site visitors will speak well of you and become your brand ambassadors in the process.
  • Optimized SEO. You can look forward to more conversions, a lower bounce rate, and fewer complaints with a fully accessible website. These stats are key when Google and other search engines rank your site.
  • Financial Rewards. Spend money now on accessibility, save money later in costly legal expenses and emergency design upgrades. Also, reap the rewards of dedicated business from customers whose brand loyalty to you is now impenetrable because of your dedication to their community.
  • Enhanced Innovation. Bring your accessibility up to a new level and you may just find solutions to longstanding issues.

UsableNet Can Help

Creating an accessible website is not only necessary for inclusivity but also good business practice. Making your website and digital content more accessible can help you avoid expensive lawsuits and open your business to new customers. Learn how to get started by taking our free assessment now.New call-to-action



Founded in 2000, UsableNet created some of the first tools and platforms to make websites accessible and usable for all people. Starting out, we worked with government agencies as well as universities and corporations. Today, accessibility has become important to almost all companies. We provide accessibility solutions to Fortune 1000 companies, small and medium enterprises, government, and education organizations across industries including retail, travel, hospitality, food services, automotive, financial services, and healthcare.

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