How To Be Inclusive With A Disabled Customer Base

how companies can be more inclusive to disabled customers

According to a World Bank Report, about 15% or one billion people worldwide have some form of disability. In the US alone, one out of five individuals has a disability. If your business is not accessible, you are missing out on the opportunity to turn these people into clients. 

Besides increasing sales, there are also other benefits to ensuring that your business is inclusive, including the following: 

• Enhancing your brand reputation 

• Avoiding lawsuits concerning the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prevents discrimination against people with disability 

• Providing exceptional customer service experience to everyone 

• Attracting the best employees 

There are various ways to ensure that your company is inclusive to disabled customers, and we listed some of them below. 

Keep Your Business Premise Accessible 

A safe and welcoming premise that allows convenient access to people with disabilities is one way to foster inclusion. Secure parking spaces near the entrance for their convenience. Also, ensure there is a ramp installed for wheelchairs. Keep the hallway clear, and ensure the bathroom is accessible to them as well. Additionally, keep the signs, such as the fire exit and other warnings, easy to see and read, so customers can quickly spot them. 

Ensure Website Accessibility 

It is not just the physical location of your business that needs accessibility, but your website too. The Americans with Disabilities Act prevents discrimination against people with disabilities, which is why it mandates businesses to make their services accessible, including their websites

You can make your site accessible with the help of accessibility overlays. These tools conveniently allow users to change various settings based on their needs. Moreover, adjusting these settings does not affect the original setup or program of the website, so it would still be available on its usual layout for other customers to use. These settings include disabling the animations, adjusting contrast, and changing the fonts. 

Train Staff To Efficiently Serve Customers 

Your employees are the front-liners of your company. They are the ones who deal directly with your customers, which is why they must get the proper training to provide the best assistance. The way they deal with customers could make or break the business, as customer satisfaction relies on that. If customers are happy with the service, they will keep coming back and recommend your company to others. 

However, disappointed or frustrated customers could mean a loss in your business. Plus, their bad experience could also tarnish your brand's reputation, making other people think twice about doing business with you. 

Therefore, your staff must be respectful and patient with everyone. Choosing the right words is also vital. For example, instead of saying "deaf person" use "hearing impaired" or "person with a hearing disability". 

Hire People With Disabilities 

If you want to go the extra mile, consider hiring those with disabilities in your company. Customers who have some form of disability would feel more comfortable and included if they see staff like them. 

Ensure that your business remains accessible and inclusive. It will help grow your customer base and prevent lawsuits. It's time to actively include everyone!

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