Online PDF editors play an important role in making all PDFs readable, viewable, and accessible to everyone, especially people with visual or auditory impairments. How do they do this? The way many other edit PDF tools accomplish this, through text-to-speech features, making text larger, or ensuring the contrast levels are higher. In a roundabout way, they promote accessibility and inclusivity in document design, since they let people edit PDFs online without making them buy or download additional software if they do not want to. But are there ways that editing PDF tools can make PDFs more accessible? This blog will take you through the various ways that the best online PDF editor can help you read and access all types of PDF files and documents.
Making PDFs More Accessible
The question of access is a complicated one, but that’s why many online PDF editors and other word or document processing programs have upgraded their formats to make visually viewing PDFs easier and more accessible. When we talk about inclusivity and accessibility, we mean whether people with impairments can access (visually or through another medium) files and texts the same way that sighted people can.
This may seem impossible or hard to do, but many online PDF editors and other programs have adopted a series of measures to allow visually impaired people the ability to “see” texts by adding important tools and creating platforms that adhere to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).
Aside from tech companies, many organizations and governments have implemented accessibility standards, such as the WCAG. Complying with these standards is not only a legal requirement in some cases but also a moral obligation to ensure equitable access to information.
Another important route of access that the best PDF online editors offer is free use of their products and features. Online PDF editors like PDFescape and Sejda PDF Editor offer features that allow users to edit PDFs directly in the browser, without the need to download or install additional software. These tools enable quick and efficient text edits, layout adjustments, and image modifications, ensuring that documents remain up-to-date and accessible. But, most importantly, you can use many of these tools for free, although more advanced features are premium. These premium features also include accessibility features that we’ll talk a little more in-depth about.
H2 – Why Make PDFs Accessible
As we talked about before, making PDFs and PDF editors more accessible is a moral obligation, although some countries enforce these guidelines as law. But one of the more self-interested reasons to create more inclusive content and viewers is to increase your audience. If you make your texts and viewers more inclusive, you’ll ensure that your documents are accessible to individuals with various abilities, including those with visual, auditory, or cognitive impairments.
By creating accessible PDFs, you open up your content to a broader audience. People who would have previously been turned away by inaccessible text or content will now engage, increasing your views, engagement ratings, and hopefully, your rate of conversion. But this is not the only audience that will benefit. Since your content is more accessible and easier to view, all of your users will experience the advantages of implementing accessibility guidelines into your document creation.
H2 – How to Make PDFs More Accessible
Now that we’ve discussed why making content and PDF editors more accessible is worthwhile, how can you make your content more accessible? There are several ways that you can create PDFs that are accessible to a wide range of people, ensuring fair and equitable access. One of the main ways is to add speech-to-text writing or add descriptive audio so visually impaired people can hear spoken words.
Many PDF editors also let you create fillable PDFs. Creating fillable PDF forms is an essential aspect of accessibility, especially when collecting data or feedback from users. Online PDF editors like Adobe Acrobat and Lumin PDF give you form-building capabilities, so you can design interactive forms that can be filled out digitally, ensuring a seamless, more inclusive experience.
You can also use a PDF editor to include things such as:
- Captions for audio and visual content
- Descriptive text for hyperlinks and other clickable content
- Adjusting the color contrast so words are more visible
The various ways you can make PDFs more accessible and viewable to everyone mean that there is no excuse not to do it. You can try everything from visual aids or captions and descriptive videos to heighten the experience for people with all types of impairments. Online PDF editors offer you tools to create, edit, and modify PDFs but can also help you create texts with accessibility in mind. By adopting best practices such as providing alt text, and ensuring sufficient color contrast, you can empower inclusive document design and make information accessible to all users.