How To Use An Accessibility Overlay To Improve Your Website’s Usability

Making your website accessible to everyone is not only the right thing to do, but it can also make your website more usable for everyone. By using an accessibility overlay, you can ensure that your website is accessible to people with disabilities and makes it easier for people unfamiliar with your site’s layout.

What is an Accessibility Overlay?

An accessibility overlay is a transparent layer that sits on top of your website, and it can be used to provide additional information or functionality to users. This can include labeling all of the different elements on the page, providing tooltips for icons and buttons, or even adding extra functionality like a search bar.

There are many different overlay tools that you can use, and each has its benefits and drawbacks. In this article, we’ll look at some of the most popular options and how you can use them to improve your website’s usability.

Accessibility Overlay Tools

There are several different accessibility overlay tools available, but we’ll focus on three of the most popular options:

High Contrast Mode

High contrast mode is a built-in feature of many web browsers that can be used to improve the visibility of website content. When activated, the high contrast mode will invert the colors on the page, making it easier to see text and other elements.

To activate high contrast mode in your browser, follow these steps:

Browser-Specific Instructions


  1. Open the Chrome menu and select “Settings.”
  2. Scroll down and select “Advanced.”
  3. Under the “Accessibility” section, enable the “High Contrast Mode” setting.


  1. Open the Firefox menu and select “Preferences.”
  2. Select the “Content” panel.
  3. Enable the “High Contrast” mode setting.


  1. Open Safari and select “Preferences.”
  2. Select the “Appearance” tab.
  3. Enable the “High Contrast” mode setting.

Screen Reader

A screen reader is a software application that can be used to improve the accessibility of a website. Screen readers are typically used by people who are blind or have low vision. They can provide a variety of benefits, including the ability to read text aloud, navigate through pages using keyboard commands, and more.

Several different screen reader applications are available, but the most popular options are JAWS and NVDA.

How To Use An Accessibility Overlay

Now that we’ve covered some of the basics of accessibility overlays let’s look at how you can use them to improve your website’s usability.

Adding an accessibility overlay to your website is a relatively easy process and can be done in just a few steps:

  1. Choose an overlay tool
  2. Download the tool and install it on your computer
  3. Open the tool and add your website address
  4. Adjust the settings to fit your needs
  5. Click “Apply” and test the overlay on your website

Each of these steps will be described in more detail below.

Final Word on Accessibility Overlays

Accessibility overlays can be a great way to improve the usability of your website, but they are not a solution that will work for everyone. In some cases, you may need to make additional changes to your website to ensure that it is fully accessible.

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