Top 25 Awesome Accessibility Testing Tools for Websites

Top 25 Awesome Accessibility Testing Tools for Websites

Last Edited April 28, 2017 by Garenne Bigby in Accessibility Testing

Why is web accessibility needed?

Web accessibility means opening accessibility of the Web to everyone, specifically those who have disabilities, allowing them to perceive, understand, navigate and interact with the Web. These disabilities cover all levels, including auditory, physical, speech, cognitive and neurological. Most Websites have some sort of accessibility barrier that makes it difficult for a person with a disability to use their site. Web accessibility assists making sure that people with all disabilities do not face these roadblocks when accessing the Web.

accessibility testing tools for websites2


Tools do exist that assist website developers in making their sites more accessible for those with disabilities. Browsers are also key in web accessibility. The challenge is designing a site and software that meets different users’ needs, preferences and situations. Web accessibility also can benefit those without disabilities, specifically those with a temporary disability such as a broken arm, aging, and slow Internet connections. The accessibility testing tool you should use depends on your site’s needs and budget among many other factors.

dynomapper accessibility testing

DYNO Mapper is a sitemap generator that checks the web accessibility of websites and online applications. DYNO Mapper also includes content inventory and audit, as well as daily keyword tracking. Results are displayed within visual sitemaps to allow for easy and efficient project discovery and planning. Version 1.0 was released on December 1, 2014. Guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0 W—3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, U.S. federal procurement standards, Stanca Act, BITV, Italian accessibility legislation, and German government standards. The program assists by automatically checking groups of pages or sites, including those that are restricted or password protected, and generating reports of assessment results. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, and XHTML. Licenses are available for commercial or enterprise, but users are also able to test the product through a trial or demo version. A free 14-day trial is available.

 

A11Y Compliance Platform

The A11Y Compliance Platform is offered through the Bureau of Internet Accessibility. The platform gives tools, reports and services to help companies and organizations maintain and defend the web site’s accessibility and integrity. The standards and guidelines that are used in this platform include Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, Section 508 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). How it works is each client is assigned a dedicated Client Manager who oversees their site. This manager takes on all aspects of the project, and this includes identifying the client’s specific needs and ensuring that milestones are met during the Audit. They offer dedicated attention to the company and serve as the experts who can help navigate them through the complex requirements. The most recent version, Version 5, Release 3.4 was released in November 2013. The platform generates reports of evaluation results, and the offered managers will help go through these results in a step-by-step fashion. The platform will automatically check single web pages as well as groups of web pages or websites. This is a web-based, online, hosted service, and licensing is available for commercial and enterprise. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, XHTML, SVG, PDF, Images, and SMIL.

 

AATT (Automated Accessibility Testing Tool)

AATT (Automated Accessibility Testing Tool) is a product offered by PayPal. This platform provides an accessibility API as well as other custom web applications for HTML CodeSniffer. Version 1.0.0 was released in April 2015. The program assists by creating reports of evaluation results. It automatically checks single web pages, as well as groups of web pages or sites. This includes password protected or restricted pages. AATT includes HTMLCodeSniffer with both PhantomJS and Express, which runs on Node. The license is Open Source and supported formats include HTML and Images.

 

Accessibility Checker

Accessibility Checker, created by CKSource, is a software program that allows you to inspect the accessibility level of content that is created in CKEditor. The software was released on March 20, 2015, and is known as an innovative solution for web accessibility. When accessibility issues are spotted, the product allows you to solve those issues immediately as they are found. The product is user-friendly in that it assists by providing users with step-by-step accessibility evaluation guidance. The product comes in both English and Dutch versions, and the supported formats are CSS, HTML, and XHTML. The Guidelines include WCAG 2.0 – W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0 – W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standard. You can test the product out in a trial or demo format, and once a purchase is made, the license can be both commercial and enterprise.

 

Accessibility Checklist

Accessibility Checklist, provided through Elsevier, offers a free and easy way to review the most recent and relevant web accessibility guidelines. The checklist was released on March 20, 2015 and covers guidelines WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508 and U.S. federal procurement standards. The checklist gives a simplified language framework, and the user interface is easy to navigate. Users can filter the guidelines by topic, and these topics include keyboard, images and forms. Another filter option includes filtering by standard levels, including A, AA, or AAA.


Accessibility checklist provides step-by-step evaluation guidance in terms of your site’s web accessibility. For those sites and developers who are working on a tighter budget, there is good news. Accessibility Checklist is a free software with no required paid license. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, XHTML, and Images.

Accessibility Management Platform (AMP)

Another web accessibility tool is offered through the SSB BART Group, and this tool is the Accessibility Management Platform (AMP). This platform is a web-based platform that provides turkey, scalable solutions for meeting all web accessibility compliance standards, including Section 508, the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. This compliance is garnered through comprehensive testing, reporting and training. Guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0 – W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, U.S. federal procurement standards, JIS or Japanese Industry Standards, and Irish National IT Accessibility Guidelines.


AMP generates reports of evaluation results and provides users step-by-step evaluation guidance. The report format is in HTML. AMP is an online checker, hosted service and server installation. The program automatically checks groups of web pages, websites or single web pages, as well as password protected or restricted pages. Browser plugins include Firefox, Internet Explorer 8, and Internet Explorer 9. Suggest formats are PDF documents, CSS, HTML, XHTML, PDF, XML Javascript, AJAX, and ARIA. The most recent version was released on June 1, 2004. License include both enterprise and commercial.

Accessibility Viewer

Accessibility Viewer is provided through The Paciello Group. Also known as aViewer, it is a Windows' inspection tool that displays accessibility API information exposed by web browsers to the operating system. The accessibility information includes IAccessible2, MSAA, UI Automation, HTML DOM, and ARIA. AViewer was released in April 2015, and it covers the guidelines WCAG 2.0 – W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. The program assists by displaying information within the web pages, and it automatically checks single web pages. The supported format is HTML and the product is an online service. Unlike many other web accessibility programs, aViewer is also a free license software program.


8. AChecker

AChecker

Inclusive Design Research Centre released its web accessibility program, AChecker on September 19, 2008. The characteristics that make this program appealing is it is interactive, international and customizable, depending on your needs. AChecker allows users to create their own desired guidelines as well as write their own accessibility checks. The program is defined by the OAC (Open Accessibility Checks). Guidelines covered are WCAG 2.0 – W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, U.S. federal procurement standards, BITV, Italian accessibility legislation, Stanca Act, and German government standards.


The program comes in English, German and Italian formats, and supported formats include CSS, HTML and XHTML. It is an online checker and hosted service that automatically checks single web pages, as well as password protected or restricted pages. Once these are checked, reports are generated with the evaluation results in HTML, PDF, XML and EARL report formats. The API is a Web service, and licenses are free as well as open source.

Acrobat XI Pro

A trusted name in web development, Adobe offers a web accessibility platform called Acrobat XI Pro. Released in December 2014, Acrobat XI Pro offers accessibility checking tools that can identify accessibility issues in PDF documents specifically, as well as offering the ability to address these web accessibility issues. The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. Acrobat XI Pro assists by generating reports of the evaluation results and providing step-by-step understanding of the evaluation. The support format for this software is specifically for PDF documents.


Acrobat XI Pro licenses are in commercial or enterprise format, but users can access the program via a trial or demo version first. The languages included are numerous including English, Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese (both simplified and traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Hungarian, Ukrainian, Turkish, Russian and Swedish.

aXe Chrome Plugin

Axe Chrome Plugin by Deque Systems is a program that evaluates the web accessibility of sites and applications from within the Chrome developer tools, specifically. The plugin assists by generating reports of web accessibility evaluation results and automatically checks single pages, password protected or restricted pages included. The specific browser supported is Google Chrome for this plugin. Supported formats are HTML and XHTML, and the guidelines covered are WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. Being a web-based program, the license for access is free and easily accessible.

Bookmarklets for Accessibility Testing

Bookmarklets for Accessibility Testing, by Paul J. Adam, uses JavaScript to highlight roles, states, and properties of web accessibility elements on web pages. These are accessible to the screen reader users on any browser, including those on mobile phones. The most recent version 2.0 was released on July 1, 2015, and it covers guidelines including WCAG 2.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards.


It works by dragging and dropping the link you wish to evaluate into your bookmarks bar to use in any browser. The program assists by displaying information within the web pages themselves, and it automatically checks specific, single web pages. Browser plugins include Google Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer 8 and 9, Opera 12 and 15, and Safari. Supported formats are CSS, HTML and Images, and the license is completely free for users.

CKSource Accessibility Checker

CKSource Accessibility Checker by CKSource offers a program that allows users to inspect the web accessibility level of content created specifically within the CKEditor program and then solve any web accessibility issues found. It is a brand-new feature of CKEditor with the most recent version 1.0 released on May 19, 2016. Guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards.


The authoring tool is CKEditor itself, and languages include Dutch, English and German. CKSource provides step-by-step evaluation guidance on web accessibility results and will display the information within the web pages themselves. The program will also modify the presentation of web pages as needed. It automatically checks single web pages, and supported formats include HTML and XHTML. Licenses are available open source.

CommonLook PDF Global Access

CommonLook PDF Global Access offered by NetCentric Technologies is another web accessibility for PDF documents programs, authored by Adobe Acrobat. The specific format supported is PDF documents or files. CommonLook is a well-known choice for professional PDF web accessibility remediation, and licenses are available for both commercial and enterprise bases.


Released on January 1, 2007, the guidelines covered by this program include WCAG 2.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. The program generates reports of evaluation results and provides step-by-step evaluation guidance on these results.

COMPLYFirst Professional

COMPLYFirst Professional, a program offered by Odellus Corporation, works specifically as a desktop application and is not server based. It provides Automated and Manual DOM interface web accessibility testing and provides reports to management and QA analysts, as well as remediation code samples to developers. The company does provide training classes as well as evaluation of your site’s current web accessibility.


The most recent version was released March 11, 2002. The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. The program generates findings of evaluation results, giving step-by-step evaluation guidance, exhibiting results and information within the page and altering the presentation of web pages. It checks single pages automatically, as well as websites or groups of pages, including those with password protected or restricted pages. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, XHTML, PDF documents, and Images. Licenses are available for commercial and enterprise purposes.

Cynthia Says

Cynthia Says is a program offered through HiSoftware that helps users identify the web accessibility compliance errors in their site, allowing them to test their individual pages on their site through the Cynthia Says portal and providing feedback in a format that is easy to understand for even the least tech savvy users. The portal is part of a joint education and outreach of Cryptzone, ICDRI, and the Internet Society Disability and Special Needs Chapter, educating users in the concepts behind web site accessibility.


The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. Cynthia Says automatically checks single web pages, and supports formats including CSS, HTML, and Images. Cynthia Says is an online checker as well as free software.


16. FireEyes

FireEyes

FireEyes, by Deque Systems Inc., is a Firefox-specific plugin that integrates with Firebug and permits QA engineers, developers and subject matter experts to test their site for web accessibility compliance. The program has a screen reader simulation, built-in color contrast analysis, and support for DHTML pages.


The most recent version 2 was released on June 1, 2010. The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. It assists by presenting reports of evaluation results, giving step-by-step evaluation guidance and displaying information within the web pages as well as altering the presentation of web pages. FireEyes assists by creating reports of evaluation results, giving step-by-step evaluation guidance and displaying information within the pages and altering the presentation of the pages. FireEyes checks both single web pages as well as groups of pages or sites, including those that are restricted or password protected.


Browser plugins include Firefox and Internet Explorer 9. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, XHTML, and PDF. Report formats are in HTML, CSV, Exports issues to JIRA and HP ALM. It is an online service, including hosted service, server installation and browser plugin. The licenses are free and are both commercial and enterprise, as well.

HiSoftware Compliance Sheriff Web

HiSoftware Compliance Sherrif Web, offered through HiSoftware Inc., is a platform that monitors and helps to enforce web accessibility guidelines on public web sites and portals and intranets. This program enables organizations to easily validate and watch content on their sites, checking them for compliance contrary to standards-based (WCAG, Section 508) and custom policies for accessibility.


The most recent Version 4.2 was released on March 27, 2013. The guidelines included are WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—Section 508, W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, U.S. federal procurement standards, RGAA, French government standards. HiSoftware generates reports of evaluation results, giving step-by-step evaluation guidance and displaying information within the web pages. Reports are provided in HTML, PDF, and CSV format. The program automatically checks single web pages, groups of web pages or sites, as well as restricted or password-protected pages. Browser plugins include Firefox and Internet Explorer 9.


Supported formats are Microsoft Office documents, PDF documents, CSS, HTML, XHTML, and Images. The program is an online checker, hosted service, and server installation. Licenses are commercial or enterprise, with trial or demo versions available.

HTML_CodeSniffer

HTML CodeSniffer is offered through Squiz, and it is a program that detects violations of a defined coding standard and checks HTML documents. The program comes with principles that cover three conformance levels of the WCAG 2.0 and the U.S. Section 508 legislation. The interface is provided in a manner that lets you try out accessibility checks on any web page. It is written completely in JavaScript and can be extended by your developer to enforce custom coding standards by producing what are called your own “sniffs" and does not entail any server-side processing.


The web accessibility guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—Section 508, W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, and U.S. federal procurement standards. HTML CodeSniffer generates reports of evaluation results, giving the user step-by-step evaluation guidance and displaying information within the scanned web pages. It automatically reviews single pages specifically, including both restricted and password protected. The browser plugins supported include Google Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer 8, Internet Explorer 9, and Safari. The supported format is HTML, with the most recent version 2.0.3 being released on December 15, 2014. The license is open source, and the online service includes an online checker, hosted service and server installation.

Mobile Web Accessibility Checker

This program is offered through UserLight Ltd, which verifies web accessibility on mobile sites on an iOS device, such as iPhone or iPad. Once verified, the evaluation findings can be exported via Google Spreadsheets or CSV. The program generates reports of the evaluation results but also provides step-by-step evaluation guidance. Mobile Web Accessibility Checker checks single web pages, groups of web pages or sites, as well as password protected or restricted pages.


The most recent version 1.1 was released in August 19, 2006. The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, and Images. Licenses for the software are commercial, but trial or demo versions are available.

Monsido Web Governance Platform

Monsido Web Governance Platform is a platform offered through by Monsido Inc. The program will scan your web site for any web accessibility issues in a format that is easy for those users who are less than “tech-savvy.” In fact, the company states that you do not have to be a web developer or even familiar with web accessibility compliance standards to ensure your site is current and in compliance.


The most recent version was released on July 18, 2013. The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, U.S. federal procurement standards, Stanca Act, and Italian accessibility legislation. Monsido generates reports of evaluation results, giving the user a step-by-step evaluation guidance, displaying the information given within the web pages themselves. The program checks single web pages, groups of web pages or web sites, including password protected or restricted pages. Supported formats include CSS and HTML, and the service is an online, hosted service. The license is commercial or enterprise, but users can also test out the program through a trial or demo platform initially.


21. Pa11y

Pa11y

Pa11y is a program offered through the Nature Publishing Group. It monitors the web accessibility of your web sites with the pa11y-dashboard specifically. The most recent version 1.6.0 was released on April 8, 2015, and it covers guidelines including WCAG 2.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards.


Pa11y is a free, open source and self-hosted program that lets you monitor as many sites as you need and run tests automatically daily. It assists by generating reports of web accessibility evaluation results, automatically checking single web pages, groups of web pages or sites, as well as password protected or restricted pages. The license is open source, and users can test the program through the demo included on the Pa11y site. The supported formats include CSS, HTML, and Images. The service is specifically an online checker as well as server installation.


22. SortSite

SortSite

SortSite is a tool offered through PowerMapper that lets web developers or users evaluate the web4 accessibility of individual Web pages or entire Web sites. SortSite is used by federal agencies and private and public corporations for web accessibility evaluations. Version 3.03, the most recent version of SortSite was released on June 1, 2009. The guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards.


The program assists by presenting reports of evaluation results, and it automatically checks single web pages, groups of web pages or web sites, as well as password protected or restricted pages. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, XHTML, PDF documents, and Images. Platforms supported include both Mac OS X and Windows. The program uses inside and outside firewalls, including intranets and development sites. Licenses are commercial, but users/developers can test the program on a trial or demo basis.


23. Tenon

Tenon

Tenon is a web accessibility testing tool that is known for giving flexibility for designers when evaluating a site’s accessibility. Tenon is specifically aimed at delivering flexibility in tooling for developers, designers, content providers, and testers. The program utilizes API, and it is this platform that easily integrates into your already existing toolset.


The most recent version 1.0 was released on January 1, 2013. Guidelines include WCAG 2.0 — W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards. Google Chrome is the supported browser plug-in, and supported formats include CSS, HTML, and XHTML.


Tenon assists by creating reports of evaluation results and automatically checks single web pages, groups of web pages or web sites, as well as password protected or restricted pages. Report formats are HTML, XML, CSV, and JSON. The authoring tools involved are Adobe Dreamweaver, Microsoft Visual Studio, and Sublime Text. Tenon is an online service, being an online checker, hosted service and server installation. Licenses are commercial or enterprise, but you can also test the program through a trial or demo version.

Total Validator

Total Validator is a validation program that comes with more than just one tool to evaluate web accessibility. In fact, the program is a 5-in-1 validation tool, including HTML and XHTML validator, an Accessibility validator, a CSS validator, a broken links checker, and, of course, a spell checker. The guidelines covered are WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and the U.S. federal procurement standards.


The program can be run from your desktop computer, command line, or via Google Chrome or Firefox add-ons. It assists by generating reports of these five evaluation results, and reports are supported in HTML format. Browser plugins supported include both Google Chrome and Firefox. Total Validator automatically checks single web pages, groups of web pages or websites, and password protected or restricted pages. Supported formats include HTML and XHTML. The most recent version 8.5 was released on August 3, 2014, and licensing is free as well as in commercial format.


25. WorldSpace

WorldSpace

WorldSpace, by Deque Systems, is a server-based web accessibility evaluation platform that can retrieve and evaluate entire web sites instead of just individual pages. WorldSpace is fully JavaScript-aware, and can also provide customizable, robust automated site testing, including the ability to multi-part, script complex user input paths.


Guidelines covered include WCAG 2.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, WCAG 1.0—W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, Section 508, and U.S. federal procurement standards.


The program generates reports of web accessibility evaluation results and automatically checks single web pages, groups of web pages or web sites and restricted or password protected sites. Supported formats include CSS, HTML, and XHTML. It’s an online service, both hosted service and server installation, and licenses are commercial and enterprise.

Garenne Bigby
Author: Garenne BigbyWebsite: http://garennebigby.com
Founder @dynomapper
Garenne Bigby is freelance Chicago developer and founder of DYNO Mapper with over 10 years experience in both agency and freelance roles in design, development, user experience, SEO, and information architecture.

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