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How To Test A Whole Website For Accessibility With Accessibility Reporter

I am a good person, which means that I always aim to make any website I work on accessible, so I have created a little website to try to help improve website accessibility called Accessibility Reporter.

What is Accessibility Reporter?

Accessibility Reporter is a tool for testing the accessibility of a website. There are quite a lot excellent free accessibility testing tools out there such as WAVE Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool, axe and Lighthouse, however I couldn’t find one that reports on a whole website.

You simply type in a starting URL and you get a report, without having to download anything.

Whole website accessibility testing

The tool crawls an entire website, rather like an SEO crawler would do, and runs a number of tests on each page. It updates the user in real time using web sockets and provides a report of all the issues found and the number of violations for each Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1.

The use case for this type of tool is for when you want to audit a whole website for accessibility like you would do an SEO audit.

Example report

Each issue found contains a link to the page where it was found, the associated code and a list of related WCAG 2.1 criteria.

Below is a screenshot of an example report.

Limitations

There are a number of areas that cannot be tested by Accessibility Reporter, or in fact any automated testing tool, so it is critical that you use both automated and manual testing. In a government blog article they created a test page with 143 accessibility issues on it and the best tool only discovered 37% of the issues.

Also, because the tool doesn’t render JavaScript it will also not work for testing SPAs, or websites that heavily rely on JavaScript.

The future

Accessibility Reporter is very much a work in progress and I will continue to concentrate on improving the quality and number of tests and of course the accessibility of the website.

Check it out

Check out Accessibility Reporter and test how accessible your websites are.