A Complete Guide To Accessible Front-End Components

A Complete Guide To Accessible Front-End Components

A Complete Guide To Accessible Front-End Components. Reliable accessible front-end components: :focus styles, content sliders, dark mode, data charts, date pickers, form styles, navigation menu, modals, radio buttons, "skip" links, SVGs, tabs, tables, toggles and tooltips.

Reliable accessible front-end components: :focus styles, content sliders, dark mode, data charts, date pickers, form styles, navigation menu, modals, radio buttons, "skip" links, SVGs, tabs, tables, toggles and tooltips.

Table of Contents

Below you’ll find an alphabetical list of all accessible components. Skip the table of contents, or just scroll down to explore them one-by-one.

Accessible :focus Styles

Every browser has default focus styles, yet out of the box, they aren’t very accessible. The goal of :focus is to give the user guidance on where exactly they are in the document and help them navigate through it. To achieve that, we need to avoid a focus that’s too subtle or not visible at all. In fact, removing outline is a bad idea as it removes any visible indication of focus for keyboard users. The more obvious the focus is, the better.

Better :focus Styles

Better :focus Styles (Large preview)

There are ways of designing better :focus styles. In his article Tips For Focus Styles, Nic Chan highlights a few helpful tips on how to improve focus styles with better affordance and a bit of padding, offset, and proper outlines. Need more fun with :focus styles? Lari Maza has got your back, too.

We can also use :focus-within to style the parent element of a focused element, and :focus-visible to not show focus styles when interacting with a mouse/pointer if it causes any issues in your design.

It’s important co consider the accessibility concerns around :focus-visible: as Hidde de Vries has noted, not all people who rely on focus styles use a keyboard and making focus styles keyboard-only takes away an affordance for mouse users too, as focus also indicates that something is interactive (thanks to Jason Webb for the tip!).

Finally, it’s worth noting that most recently Chrome, Edge, and other Chromium-based browsers stopped displaying a focus indicator (focus ring) when the user clicks or taps a button (thanks to Kim Johannesen for the tip!).

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