1. Money
Send to a Friend via Email

WIB Answers - How Do I Enlarge Text Appearance on Websites That Use Small Text?

The Importance of Making Your Website Accessible

By

Question:

I cannot read the tiny text on a website. How can I make the text on website pages appear larger?

As a vision impaired business woman and web designer, I am disturbed to see an alarming trend in the number of website pages that open and display text that is too small for the human eye to read - even with glasses! I am not referring to the dreaded "fine print" we see in disclaimers, terms, and privacy policies. I am talking about the actual content and even sidebar links displayed on websites.

Even some government agencies (including the IRS) have begun incorporating tiny, unreadable text into their websites. I find this a fascinating example of hypocrisy since federal and state governments regulate and enforce the Americans with Disabilities Act and advocate for accessibility.

I honestly cannot offer you any logical explanation for this insane way of presenting information to web consumers but I can give you tips on how to make text appear larger so you can read most web pages.

Unless you are severely vision impaired it is easy to enlarge (or reduce) text to make it more readable on your computer screen without having to purchase or download special software.

Microsoft Internet Explorer (All Versions)

If you encounter a website with small text using Internet Explorer use the drop down menu in your task bar to select the following options to increase or decrease the font's appearance:
  1. View
  2. Text Size
  3. Largest, Larger, Medium, Smaller, Smallest

Mozilla Firefox and Netscape 6.2, 7.0 and 8.1

The following steps will help you enlarge or reduce the appearance of text on a web page viewed in Firefox or Netscape. Begin by opening the browser window to the page you want to view larger (or smaller):
  1. Enlarge Text: Press and hold down the control (Ctrl) key on your keyboard and then press the plus (+) key. Repeat Ctrl + until you can read the text.
  2. Reduce Text Size: Press and hold down the control (Ctrl) key on your keyboard and then press the minus (-) key. Repeat Ctrl - until the text is the desired size.

Apple Safari - all versions

Use the following steps to enlarge or reduce the appearance of text on a web page in apple Safari. Begin by opening the browser window to the page you want to view larger (or smaller):
  1. Enlarge Text: Press and hold down the Apple key on your keyboard and then press the plus (+) key. Repeat until you can read the text.
  2. Reduce Text Size: Press and hold down the Apple key on your keyboard and then press the minus (-) key. Repeat until the text is the desired size.

How to Make Your Website More Accessible

If you are designing a website consider making it accessible to people with disabilities. To learn about ways you can design a website that is user friendly to those with vision, hearing, and other impairments:

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.