I myself do a whole lot of shopping on line and find different levels of accessibility. Some sites work very well, all forms are correctly tagged and functional. Others work, but with some effort to get around some accessibility barriers. I use amazon, e-toys, and up until recently was a big user on e-bay. There are so many benefits to shopping on line. It saves the hassle of scheduling transportation, dealing with customer service at the stores, and not really knowing all of your choices. On line, I can compare prices, see all items I want and their descriptions, and have them delivered to my doorstep with ease. So here’s my beef with e-bay. I hadn’t shopped on there for some time, quite simply because it is addictive and I was spending too much money. You can’t pass up great deals after all! So yesterday, I was looking for a good deal on a specific item for my daughter, went to e-bay and was a little dismayed at some changes they have made. First of all, they have added a lot more graphics that are untagged and all over the place on the page. They have also incorporated more layout tables, causing jaws to spit out unnecessary table information with empty rows and columns. They have no skip to main content, so when I want to see an item and its description, I have to weigh through all of the graphics and empty tables to get to what I need. The headings are still there, which is great, but even skipping by heading doesn’t get me past quickly to the information I’m seeking. I can still shop and complete my purchase, but it requires more effort than it used to, and it is extremely tedious.
Will I still shop at e-bay? Probably, but perhaps not as often, I don’t have the time to take forever to get information, no matter how great the deals are. I’m not sure what prompted them to make these changes, but from my standpoint, they decreased their accessibility. So what can one do when you find yourself in this situation? Who do you talk to? How can you tactfully tell a big business like this that they’ve lost my few cents because they have become inaccessible to me? Knowbility surely can help improve the site, but the company has to be open and want to become accessible. I would love to see a procedure in place to help anyone report somewhere or talk to someone who can help if they encounter problems accessing any web site for any reason. This is just one example, but I find sites often that I can’t easily get information I need or want, sometimes I don’t get it at all. Obviously the more accessible a site is to me, the more I will use it, and I believe that is important to any business, no matter how big. It is us little people who make them what they are.