Enhancing Digital Accessibility with AEM: Best Practices and Techniques

Are you struggling to make your digital experiences accessible to all users, regardless of their abilities or disabilities? In today’s world, ensuring digital accessibility is not just a legal requirement but a moral obligation to create an inclusive online environment. Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) offers powerful tools and features to help you achieve this goal, but implementing them effectively requires a deep understanding of best practices and techniques.


Digital accessibility refers to the practice of designing and developing websites, applications, and digital content that can be easily accessed and used by people with disabilities, such as visual, auditory, cognitive, or motor impairments. By embracing accessibility principles, organizations can create a more inclusive digital landscape, enabling individuals with diverse needs to access information, services, and experiences without barriers.

Key Takeaways

  • Understand the importance of digital accessibility and its impact on creating an inclusive online environment.
  • Learn about the key accessibility features and tools available in AEM.
  • Discover best practices for implementing accessibility standards and guidelines.
  • Explore techniques for creating accessible content, including text alternatives, keyboard navigation, and multimedia accessibility.
  • Gain insights into testing and evaluating the accessibility of your AEM-powered digital experiences.
  • Understand the role of continuous improvement and maintenance in ensuring long-term accessibility.

Accessibility Features in AEM

AEM provides a comprehensive set of features and tools to help you create accessible digital experiences. These include:

  • Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA) support: AEM components are ARIA-compliant, enabling assistive technologies to interpret and interact with web content effectively.
  • Keyboard navigation: AEM ensures that all interactive elements can be accessed and operated using a keyboard, catering to users with motor disabilities.
  • Text alternatives: AEM allows you to provide text alternatives for non-text content, such as images and multimedia, ensuring accessibility for users with visual impairments.
  • Contrast and color accessibility: AEM provides tools to ensure sufficient color contrast and alternative color schemes, making content readable for users with color vision deficiencies.

Implementing Accessibility Standards and Guidelines

To ensure your AEM-powered digital experiences are truly accessible, it’s crucial to follow industry-recognized accessibility standards and guidelines. The most widely adopted guidelines are the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) developed by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). These guidelines provide a comprehensive set of recommendations for making web content more accessible to people with disabilities.

When implementing accessibility standards in AEM, it’s essential to consider the following best practices:

  • Conduct accessibility audits and evaluations to identify potential barriers and areas for improvement.
  • Provide comprehensive training and resources to your content authors and developers on accessibility best practices.
  • Establish clear accessibility policies and guidelines within your organization.
  • Continuously monitor and update your digital experiences to ensure ongoing compliance with evolving accessibility standards.

Creating Accessible Content

One of the key aspects of enhancing digital accessibility with AEM is creating accessible content. This includes:

  • Text alternatives: Provide meaningful and descriptive text alternatives for non-text content, such as images, videos, and interactive elements. AEM’s Image Component allows you to add alternative text descriptions easily.
  • Headings and structure: Use proper heading levels and structural elements to organize content logically, making it easier for users to navigate and understand the information hierarchy.
  • Keyboard navigation: Ensure that all interactive elements, such as links, buttons, and form fields, can be accessed and operated using a keyboard. AEM’s Core Components are designed with keyboard accessibility in mind.
  • Multimedia accessibility: Provide captions, transcripts, and audio descriptions for multimedia content, ensuring accessibility for users with hearing or visual impairments.

Testing and Evaluating Accessibility

Regularly testing and evaluating the accessibility of your AEM-powered digital experiences is crucial to ensure compliance with accessibility standards and guidelines. There are various tools and techniques you can employ, including:

  • Automated testing tools: AEM integrates with various accessibility testing tools, such as the WAVE Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool, which can automatically identify and report accessibility issues.
  • Manual testing: Conduct manual testing by simulating different user scenarios and disabilities, using assistive technologies like screen readers, speech recognition software, and alternative input devices.
  • User testing: Involve users with disabilities in the testing process to gain valuable insights and feedback on the accessibility of your digital experiences.
  • Accessibility audits: Engage accessibility experts to perform comprehensive audits and provide recommendations for improving the accessibility of your AEM-powered digital experiences.

Continuous Improvement and Maintenance

Ensuring digital accessibility is an ongoing process that requires continuous improvement and maintenance. As new technologies, standards, and best practices emerge, it’s essential to stay up-to-date and adapt your accessibility strategies accordingly. This includes:

  • Regularly updating AEM and its components to take advantage of the latest accessibility features and improvements.
  • Providing ongoing training and resources to your content authors and developers to ensure they are equipped with the latest accessibility knowledge and skills.
  • Continuously monitoring and addressing accessibility issues identified through testing, user feedback, and audits.
  • Collaborating with accessibility experts, user groups, and industry organizations to stay informed about emerging trends and best practices.


Enhancing digital accessibility with AEM is a journey that requires a comprehensive understanding of best practices and techniques. By leveraging AEM’s powerful accessibility features, implementing industry-recognized standards and guidelines, creating accessible content, and continuously testing and improving your digital experiences, you can create an inclusive online environment that empowers individuals with diverse abilities.

Remember, digital accessibility is not just a legal obligation but a moral responsibility to ensure equal access to information and services for all. Embrace accessibility as a core value in your organization, and you’ll not only create a more inclusive digital landscape but also foster trust, loyalty, and a positive brand reputation among your diverse user base.

To further enhance your understanding and implementation of digital accessibility with AEM, explore the Experience Manager Accessibility Guide and engage with the vibrant AEM community for additional resources, best practices, and expert insights.

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