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Shopify ADA Accessibility: What Merchants Should Know

By UsableNet on Apr 24, 2024
Topics: Web Accessibility, Shopify


This post was originally published in June 2021 and updated in April 2024.

Over 4.8 million websites from 175 countries trust Shopify to host their store. Almost 46K of these websites use Shopify Plus, which is Shopify's enterprise solution for high-volume merchants with complex businesses.

Clearly, Shopify is doing something right when it comes to e-commerce.

But if you are using Shopify, it's important to realize that additional work is almost always needed for an inclusive, ADA-compliant Shopify website.

As a Shopify Plus Accessibility Partner we've assisted in the accessibility journey for many Shopify Plus companies over the years.

We've compiled our top four things to know and do around accessibility for your Shopify Plus website.

1. Take Responsibility for Your Shopify ADA Accessibility and Compliance

It's easy to assume that a Shopify site will have built-in accessibility for your e-commerce brand.

Unfortunately, this isn't the case.

While Shopify strongly commits to its own accessibility plan and even offers its customers some accessible templates, Shopify does not ensure or check for ADA or WCAG compliance on merchant websites.

Instead, it is your company's responsibility to ensure that the 1 in 4 Americans with a disability has an equal experience when using your e-commerce site.  

Shopify recommends accessibility partners who are experienced in working with Shopify merchants on accessibility.

Taking web accessibility into your own hands can provide a huge opportunity for you to serve a massive demographic, 61 million Americans, that you may be missing out on now.

Web accessibility builds brand integrity, enhances innovation, improves SEO, and can help you avoid ADA lawsuits

Want to check the accessibility of your webpage right now? Run a free test with our class-leading AQA tool →

2. Understand the Legal Risks for Inaccessible E-commerce Websites

In 2023, 82% of all digital accessibility lawsuits involved e-commerce retailers, including those hosted on Shopify.

In fact, 21% of the top 500 e-commerce retailers received a lawsuit in 2023. E-commerce sites are also likely to be sued multiple times

To learn more about the latest trends in accessibility litigation, see our 2023 Year-End Accessibility Lawsuit report

3. Don't Rely on Automatic Accessibility Overlays or Widgets  

More than half of the criteria for Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.2 require humans to review for accessibility. 

This means that automated tools and overlays can't guarantee that your site is accessible This fact is highlighted by the latest accessibility lawsuit data: in 2023, over 900 lawsuits were filed against companies who were already using an accessibility widget or overlay

Invest in your company’s future by using a Shopify Plus accessibility partner that offers a holistic, in-depth approach to digital accessibility.

4. Find a Shopify Plus Accessibility Partner

One of the perks for brands that use Shopify Plus is access to its renowned Shopify Plus Partner Program. This group consists of more than 290 hand-picked partners that provide various Shopify services and solutions. 

Shopify Plus Partners are divided between the categories of Service Providers and Certified App Partners. Accessibility compliance services are listed among the service providers with accompanying details including a firm's approach, case studies, and history.

Check out UsableNet's Shopify Plus page here.

Learn how to Make your Shopify Website Accessible

Want to learn more about designing accessible Shopify websites? Our simple ADA Compliance checklist outlines some easy steps that every Shopify Plus brand can take to achieve a fully compliant e-commerce store. 

While you're here, consider UsableNet's ADA compliance strategies. As a certified Shopify Plus Solutions Partner, we have helped many Shopify and Shopify Plus merchants create fully accessible websites, including Ampro Industries, Pacha Soap, Touchland, Catrice Cosmetics, and more!



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.

Need to improve digital usability, accessibility or performance? We can help.
Partner with us. Get in touch.