Digital Signage Best Practices: Designing for Accessibility

We stumbled upon some terrific Digital Signage Best Practices published by the University of Michigan Information and Technology Services. Here’s a great article on designing for accessibility.

Providing access to users with disabilities is not just a good idea, it’s fast becoming the law. A few adjustments will do the trick, and besides, most of these guidelines will help all users:

Text should be easily visible at a reasonable distance from the sign.

  • Always ensure that text colors have high contrast with the background color.
  • Avoid dark backgrounds with neon colors and white characters.
  • Keep your font sizes large, especially for your main messages. To test size, create a test screen with lines of different font sizes and have people view the screen at the farthest practical distance. Remember too that people may view the screen as they pass by.

The exception to this would be for screens meant for interaction, where the user is standing directly in front of the sign. Even here, though, keep in mind viewers with older eyes or low vision.

  • Serif fonts work well for long text passages, but digital signs are the wrong medium for paragraphs of text. It’s best usually to stick with sans-serif fonts.

Interactive signs should have alternative accessible designs.

  • Accessible elements (e.g., buttons) must be placed between 36 and 42 inches when measured from the floor.
  • Consider accessibility when designing your wayfinding content (such as stairs and accessible entrances).

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