When it comes to web design, specifically website templates, we see a lot of stock photos of white women. There are stock photo websites like Kaboompics that have very aesthetically-pleasing photos, but when you search for Black women there are maybe 2 photos out of hundreds.
For Black women, we are a large diverse and vibrant community that just so happens to have unique needs and different perspectives. In this blog post, let’s discuss why inclusive design is necessary for a positive impact in our online experiences.
But First… What Is Inclusive Design?
Inclusive design is the practice of creating websites, services and digital products for the sole purpose of catering to all or your particular niche. Inclusive design aims to remove barriers to access.
Why Inclusive Design Matters for Black Women
- Cultural Sensitivity: Inclusive design respects cultural differences. Businesses that honor cultural differences are more likely to connect with Black women on a personal level, which in turn creates an authentic connection. This builds trust and an engaging audience.
- Representation: When Black women see themselves in spaces that are typically male-dominated or predominately white they are more likely to feel valued, seen, heard and understood. This is why branding matters. It allows for imagery, content and branding that resonates with Black women.
- Social Impact: Amplifying the voices of Black women, shedding light on important social issues and fostering a sense of community are all roles in promoting social change and awareness. Your website can be an advocate for a Black woman today!
- Fostering Inclusivity Beyond Design: Inclusivity isn’t just in the visual aspect of the brand, it extends into the actions of how the business advocates for Black women. Creating a safe space is encouraging and motivational for Black women to know that they belong.
How to Implement Inclusive Design for Black Women
It all comes down to cultural competency. Educating yourself and your community about the cultural differences and preferences of Black women is imperative to making design choices that are respectful of the culture. Incorporate diverse imagery, stories and perspectives that resonate with Black women. This could look like showcasing Black women in leadership positions. Not to mention, one of the best ways to implement inclusive design for Black women is by asking a Black woman. There is always room for improvement, and what better way to improve than to hear it from the source?
Your commitment to inclusivity unlocks opportunities for growth and a more celebrated diverse community, including Black women.