A More Accessible Future

A More Accessible Future

About a year ago, Big Cartel announced that we were starting an Accessibility Audit to make sure that everybody, including folks using assistive technologies, can easily build an online store. The audit is complete, and we figured it was time for a little update.

The audit process hit a few bumps in the road, which made the process slower than expected. Our original auditor had to step away due to some personal circumstances, but thankfully, Deque was able to step up and complete an audit of their own. We received results of the audit in February 2022, and for a first-time audit, it went pretty okay! There are definitely ways that Big Cartel can improve, and work is underway to address the identified issues.

Easier for shop owners to use

As a platform that prides ourselves on being a simple solution for shop owners, we want to make sure that anyone can set up shop, so we're focusing on making it easier to get through your shop admin. For example, some areas of the admin include tooltips, extra info about a particular detail that is revealed by a hovering mouse. But the tooltips weren't as helpful when a shop owner is using a screen reader, so we've started working on improving that experience.

For folks with low vision, we've pumped up the contrast in some areas. One example: when someone creates a new discount code, they can choose to limit the date range of when it can work. Our old calendar was a dark grey, with small white and light grey numbers and didn't follow best practices for visibility (if you enjoy nerding out on this sort of thing, this resource explains accessibility guidelines for color contrast and a whole lot more). The updated date picker has larger numbers, with higher contrast — it's literally easy on the eyes.


A better experience for everyone

With a company-wide focus on accessibility, we're examining ways that we can build things better from the start, rather than making small changes here and there. We're taking this new mindset of addressing accessibility to future projects, and are excited to share more as things solidify. It’ll take a little time for our scrappy team, but the goal is to make using Big Cartel easier for everyone, including customers who use accessibility aids.

This update only scratches the surface of the work we're doing under the hood to make Big Cartel a friendly experience for all. We hope it gives you a glimpse of where our heads are at and how we're making changes — big and small — to include more people in the fun of shopping indie.

19 April 2022

Words by:Big Cartel

  • Share