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#accessiblestores #webaccessibility
May 18, 2022
3 minutes

H&M and Chanel Setting An Example With Accessible Online Stores

When it comes to major eCommerce sites catering to customers living with disabilities and impairments, H&M and Chanel are leading the way.

The Online Shopping Accessibility Index from Affise is used to rate top global organizations by determining whether they have their customers’ best interests at heart. Google Lighthouse is one of the tools used to do this.

Google Lighthouse looks at factors that could affect a site’s accessibility, including poor color contrasts and unhelpful alt text. 

Even though Chanel’s site produced six accessibility errors and 15 alerts, and H&M’s site produced 43 errors, both brands achieved an impressive score of 100, placing them in the lead.

Gucci, another renowned luxury brand, only managed a score of 60. This is mainly because the site relies on color to convey a lot of its messaging, making it difficult for colorblind users to engage with the site. 

In the hair and beauty space, Head & Shoulders produced zero accessibility errors and only a few flagged issues, leaving them with a score of 98. The site’s user-friendliness is one of the reasons for this high score.

Let’s look at how a few other major brands fared:

  • Olay: Achieved a score of 98 with zero accessibility errors and only 33 flagged issues. 
  • Dove: Scored an excellent 96, placing them third on the list of beauty brands.
  • Gillette: Achieved a score of 45, which means major changes are required for the site to be more accessible. 
  • Visa. In the finance category, Visa took the top spot with a score of 100 and only one web accessibility error.
  • Chase Bank. This is another financial brand that managed a score of 100 with only one accessibility error and two contrast errors. 

Brands with a Strong Focus on UX

In a separate study by Remarkable Commerce, which also relies on Google Lighthouse for data, it was found that The Body Shop is paving the way in terms of offering the most accessible user experience.

The study looked at the UK’s top 500 retail brands.

The popular beauty brand achieved 381 out of 400 for its accessibility efforts and 98 out of 100 for search engine optimization – an even higher score than major players such as Amazon and Asos. 

Pet food and accessories retailer, Jollyes, and outdoor apparel brand Regatta, made up the remaining top three spots. 

Brands such as Swoon, Moss Bros, Craghoppers, and Dunelm were part of the top 10. 

Brad Houldsworth, head of product at Remarkable Commerce, shared: “Online retailers know they operate in a competitive environment but as the Digital Retail Index shows, you don’t have to be a global player, or even come from an e-commerce background, to thrive online.  What sets the retailers with top-performing websites apart is their commitment to SEO and continuous technical improvements that enhance user experiences (UX). A scalable website that enables them to respond to demand during peak periods is critical for driving sales and building brand loyalty. 

“Shopper habits have now changed for good since the pandemic, shifting even further towards e-commerce, and retailers have to be ready for surges during peak periods, or they’ll get left behind. While mid-sized retailers don’t have the same in-house technical skills as the biggest e-commerce companies, it’s still possible to compete with them if you have the right platform and regularly undertake performance checks.”


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