The Best Accessible Websites
September 9, 2020
Highlighting top restaurant websites using digital accessibility best practices.
Digital accessibility is an integral part of the web browsing experience. COVID-19 has forced more restaurants to see the importance of a restaurant website that not only provides powerful ecommerce tools that drive valuable revenue but that are rooted in design best practices. Digital accessibility and adherence to ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) guidelines are integral to those best practices.
With digitally accessible tools, design best practices and adherence to these accessibility standards and guidelines, restaurants can ensure that all visitors to their website are provided equal access to their offerings. We’ve highlighted the best digitally accessible websites for inspiration.
Alongside doing rotisserie incredibly well, Shy Bird also understands the importance of a restaurant website that is digitally accessible. The Cambridge, MA-based restaurant provides an accessibility statement at the footer of its website to highlight adherence to web accessibility standards according to the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). While the template to Shy Bird’s website uses the latest best practices, they take it one step further with BentoBox’s accessibility tool called ADA Pro. This tool allows users to alternatively navigate the website. This can be accessed by clicking the blue icon at the bottom right of the screen on both desktop and mobile.
Restaurant Marc Forgione
New York City
Marc Forgione is the son of renowned chef Larry Forgione, who is touted as “The Godfather of American Cuisine.” However, his eponymous restaurant, Restaurant Marc Forgione, in NYC’s TriBeCa neighborhood, forges a path all its own — thrusting Marc into the spotlight. His exceptional detail to quality goes beyond the brick and mortar. Their website accurately reflects the mood and atmosphere of dining at the restaurant. And with details such as an accessibility statement, icons for navigating images and easily readable text, their website provides access to all web visitors looking to experience the cuisine.
New York City
While a website may use digital accessibility best practices and adhere to the latest industry standards and guidelines, the third-party apps and services they link out to can be an issue. Blue Smoke, a NYC-based barbecue restaurant from Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group uses a digitally accessible online ordering system that is attached to the website. This ensures that potential diners will have quick and equal access to their offerings to place an order online.
New York City
The text that’s featured across a website should be easily viewable to the visitor and readable by screen readers. For visually impaired web visitors, ensuring that there is enough contrast between the color of the text and the color of the background is key. Loring Place does a great job of reflecting this across their entire website. A menu page is one of the most important pages on a restaurant website and Loring Place provides an easily accessible page on both desktop and mobile for web visitors.
Smyth & The Loyalist
Owned and operated by husband and wife duo, John B. and Karen Urie Shields, Smyth and The Loyalist are twin concepts in one. Smyth is the highly seasonal tasting menu restaurant and The Loyalist is the attached neighborhood bar. Both concepts source ingredients from local farms and are clouted nationally and in the Chicago community. Their digitally accessible website captures the essence of the restaurant using a template that uses the latest best practices and adheres to industry standards and guidelines. The pop-up alert (pictured) features text that is accessible to screen readers and an image that uses alt-text — an important part of web accessibility.
Las Vegas & Miami
The Bazaar by José Andrés is a culinary excursion with each location (Las Vegas and Miami) uniquely influencing the experience. Alongside mouth-watering images of their offerings and a page dedicated to press writings and awards, the website for The Bazaar features an accessibility statement page at the footer, which details their actions and commitment to providing an accessible experience for visitors to their website. One example of this commitment is the ability to pause the carousel of images on the homepage by clicking the pause button on both mobile and desktop browsers.
Erick Williams is the chef and owner of Virtue, a restaurant and bar stationed in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. With deep roots in Southern cuisine, Williams and Virtue have been subject to many accolades. As one of Esquire’s Best New Restaurants 2019, Virtue is a destination in the community. For guests who are interested in purchasing gift cards for friends and family, Virtue makes it simple to do so straight from their website. This is an example of how a restaurant website can provide tools and services that adhere to accessibility standards. The reason? While a website can adhere to guidelines and standards, a third-party gift-card service that the website links to could not — putting the business in jeopardy of lawsuits.
New York City
Gramercy Tavern is one of New York City’s most iconic and celebrated restaurants. Opened by Danny Meyer over 25 years ago, the restaurant has witnessed the rise of technology in the industry. With an award-winning website, Gramercy Tavern understands the importance of good design. That also means being accessible to everyone. Visitors to the website can browse and order their famous Tavern Burger by ordering directly from the website. This ensures that the experience is digitally accessible to everyone.
New York City
First-time visitors to a restaurant’s website are looking for key items such as hours & location, contact information and menus. Some may just be looking for images and descriptions of the food to decide if it’s where they’re going to dine. Emmy Squared provides all of this and more on their website. With an accessibility tool as the cherry on top, visitors have peace of mind knowing that Emmy Square is committed to providing an accessible experience for all.
Young Joni, by chef and owner, Ann Kim, is one of Minneapolis’ most beloved restaurants. The restaurant and its leader have been covered in The New York Times, Esquire Vogue and more. Having an award-winning restaurant means investing in a website that accurately reflects the ambiance and cuisine it offers — to everyone. Young Joni’s website features digital accessibility best practices, including an accessibility statement that explains their commitment to adhering to guidelines and standards.
Interested in learning more about digital accessibility? Learn more about ADA guidelines and how BentoBox provides digitally accessible tools and websites for restaurants by signing up for a free demo today.
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