Forms are an essential part of online life, and we all must fill them out. However, many forms create barriers to filling out information, including obstacles regarding race, gender, and even relationships. Web editors with the best intentions could unintentionally create a barrier for a user, which means the user will get frustrated with your brand and abandon your form. And you wonâ€™t get the conversions you want. Therefore, it is essential to create accessible and inclusive forms that make taking a survey easier for your community.
Here are some tips for building inclusive forms with Form Builder
1. Ask only if necessary: Determine the need for demographic data. Then, if it is deemed necessary, provide inclusive options that are broadly representative. Traditionally, form options have been cisnormative, gender binary, and heteronormative, which does not respect the range of identities that exist. When providing a field for people to indicate an option that is not provided, avoid using "Other" as it can have a negative tone. Others can convey separateness and reinforce exclusion. Consider using the phrases "Not Listed" or "Self-describe". These terms show humility on the part of the designer/organization as it acknowledges that additional options are valid, but not listed.
2. State why: When collecting personally sensitive data, be sure to state the reason why you are asking for their information and details about how it will be used/shared. At a bare minimum include, "We require this information so that... This information will only be shared with..."
3. Provide inclusive options: Provide inclusive options that are broadly representative. Traditionally, form options have been cisnormative, gender binary, and heteronormative, which does not respect the range of identities that exist.
4. Avoid "othering": When providing a field for people to indicate an option that is not provided, avoid using "Other" as it can have a negative tone. Others can convey separateness and reinforce exclusion. Consider using the phrases "Not Listed" or "Self-describe". These terms show humility on the part of the designer/organization as it acknowledges that additional options are valid, but not listed.
5. Ask for pronouns: Providing a field for people to indicate their pronouns is a simple way to show respect for gender diversity. It is important to note that not everyone identifies as he/him or she/her. Therefore, it is essential to provide an "Other" option or a "Self-describe" option.
6. Support Keyboard Navigation: Ensure all form fields can be navigated to (and away from) only using a keyboard. From assistive technologies to broken track pads â€” this is a must.
7. Use a Clear Visual Label: Not Placeholder Text: Placeholder text is meant to be helpful as an example response. It should not be used as a replacement for a label. The problem with trying to use placeholder text as a label is that it disappears when the user starts typing. This can be confusing for users who rely on screen readers.
8. Code a Clear and Logical Layout: Layout contributes a great deal to the usability of a site. With CSS, changing a form's visual layout is possible. However, changing the visual layout creates problems for people who rely on the structural layout of the page. Because of this, your forms should have a meaningful and logical sequence. If possible, avoid making your form inputs next to each other. This is because people have to spend a little more time correlating the labels with their elements, resulting in slower form completion.
9. Provide Error Messages: Let the person access the error, and provide instructions on how to fix it. Allow the person to re-submit the form.
10. Show Progress: If the form is extensive, a progress bar is nice to manage the time expectations for the user and what information is needed at each step.
RapidoReach Form Best Practices for Creating Accessible Forms
RapidoReach Form is a form builder tool that allows users to create beautiful and interactive forms without any coding knowledge. The platform offers templates for quizzes, research, feedback, lead generation, and more. One of the key features of RapidoReach Form is its accessibility checker, which allows users to check if their forms are accessible to all users, including those with disabilities. The platform provides guidance on creating accessible forms and offers an API key that is essential for connecting RapidoReach Form to other tools and services. Users can also personalize the web address of their surveys to align with their brand or project.
When creating accessible forms with RapidoReach Form, users should consider the following tips:
1. Use clear and descriptive labels for form inputs.
2. Provide error messages that are easy to understand and follow.
3. Ensure keyboard accessibility for all form fields.
4. Use a clear and organized layout with headings and subheadings.
5. Avoid using non-descriptive links and provide descriptive link text.
6. Use inclusive language and avoid categories that may exclude certain groups of people.
By following these tips and using RapidoReach Form's accessibility checker, users can create forms that are accessible to all users, including those with disabilities.
Common mistakes to avoid when creating accessible forms
When creating accessible forms, it is important to avoid common mistakes that can create barriers for users. Here are some common mistakes to avoid when creating accessible forms:
1. Incorrect or missing labels: Labels are essential for helping users understand what information is required in each field. Missing or incorrect labels can create confusion and frustration for users, especially those who rely on assistive technology.
2. Poorly structured form labels: Form labels should be structured in a clear and organized way, using headings and subheadings to break up the form into sections. This helps users navigate the form more easily.
3. Using non-descriptive links: Links should be descriptive and provide clear information about where they lead. Avoid using generic phrases like "click here" or "read more."
4. Insufficient colour contrast: Color contrast is important for users with visual impairments. Make sure that text and background colours have sufficient contrast to be easily readable.
5. Using overlays as a catch-all solution: Overlays can be useful for some accessibility issues, but they are not a catch-all solution. Overlays cannot accurately detect or diagnose all accessibility issues, so it is important to use other accessibility techniques as well.
By avoiding these common mistakes and following best practices for accessible form design, you can create forms that are easy to use and accessible to everyone.
In conclusion, creating accessible and inclusive forms is essential to ensure that everyone can access and use your website. By following these tips, you can create forms that are easy to use and accessible to everyone.