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Accessibility and Search Engine Optimization

Check out this article on A List Apart: High Accessibility Is Effective Search Engine Optimization

Do any SEOexperts or anyone else have any comments?

4 replies on “Accessibility and Search Engine Optimization”

While I can’t disagree with his checkpoints, the top search engines do not show significant signs of preferring accessible websites. I work for a company who uses templates that not only use non-accessible site templates, but all of their sites do not comply with the DTD they put in their page headers. Many of these sites can be found in popular #1 search engine spots.

I find this dissatisfying, but then again what can you do?

Great point, Scott. Google should skew their rankings towards sites that comply with web standards! And yes, it’s very frustrating seeing all those sites out there that claim XHTML-compliancy while using table-based layout and neglecting to use proper DTDs or even any heading tags whatsoever…

As a webdesigner, I use the WAI checklist as part of the design process, along with ensuring that my pages pass the W3C validator etc…For me it, it means that my pages tend to be more cross-browser compatible, which some of the table-based, code-bloated pages aren’t. Whilst I understand that people working in corporations cannot personally do much, there are plenty of web designers out there who have no excuse.

Some good points there. After all Google is trying to act like a human viewer as to what is useful and accessibility is a key criteria. The issue is how can Google act like a human and do it quickly for the millions of web sites out there. I suppose that’s why often linking is used as a simple proxy for human popularity. Any thoughts on this? (

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