Social media is a big part of any business, charity or organisation these days. It’s a fairly cost-effective way of letting people know what and where your business is. However, it has a few downsides, one of which is how much time it takes to grow your audience and develop your online content.

Our posts and videos are not always accessible to people with disabilities. It can be hard to know what changes you need to make if you’ve only just started to get the hang of Instagram or understand how to use TikTok.

Here are six small changes you can introduce:

1- Colours

We often don’t think about the colours we use on social media outside of using our brand colours. However, not having enough contrast can make it difficult for people who are visually impaired and/or colour-blind to tell the colours apart or be able to see the image.

You can check colours online to see if they meet the WCAG AA standard. You need to get the hex colour code for each colour you use before you start. By inputting them into something like the WebAIM checker.

You can visit the WebAIM website here.

The website will tell you if your content has enough of a contrast or not. If not, you’ll need to rethink the colours. This should be used for all communication – not just social media.

Extra tip – It’s not just the colour that you need to think about but if the text can be read against the background that you are posting it on. If not, reconsider the background.

2- Captions for social media videos

Adding captions to a video is easier than you think. It’s essential to help D/deaf or people who are hard of hearing access your content. Some people who are neurodivergent may watch videos with the sound off as they may find it distracting or jarring.

More apps are adding this as a feature to make creating videos in the app easier. However, if you are using this feature then you’ll need to check that the captions generated by AI are correct and remove anything like ahem or uh or er in the text.

If you don’t have the option in the app then software like Veed or apps such as Capcut can help you to edit your video and add captions.

3 -Alt text

If someone is using a screen reader or similar technology then they need a description of the image. Alt text can help someone to understand what is happening and why that image is there.

Often, people forget to add alt text completely or under-describe an image. Although you can also over-describe something too! The trick is to give someone the correct amount of important information that they need to be able to understand what is there.

There is debate over the placement of alt text within a post. Most apps allow you to add text within an image when posting. Some content management systems may struggle with Instagram so you may have to post the alt text manually within the app. It’s also worth adding the image description below or in the main text for those who do not use screen readers.

It’s also good practice to do this with video posts where possible.

4 -Lower case

Don’t shout!

For this reason, using all upper-case captions can be seen as rude when used in the main text of a post, we often don’t think about them within the design of an image. Lowercase texts are easier to read for neurodivergent people who may have conditions such as dyslexia.

If you would like to learn more about dyslexia, visit our blog which explains everything you need to know.

5 – Link text

Screenreaders may struggle to pick up links in a text correctly. It’s good SEO practice to include external links from reputable websites and to back up your research. However, just highlighting the words ‘click here’ doesn’t tell a screen reader what it means.

Using terminology that directs a person gives them a better idea of what the link is for and what they need to do. Why not visit our website to read our resources with the words, ‘visit our website to read our resources’ works best.

6 – Camel case hashtags

Hashtags let people find your content more easily – especially when one is trending. It can be really difficult to read and also, screen readers may as read them as one word.

CamelCase means writing words so that the first letter of each word is a capital. This would look like this – #EnhanceTheUK. It breaks up the word so that people can read it more easily.