Create Accessible Spreadsheets

As you create spreadsheets, use the following common practices to help ensure accessibility and usability for everyone.

Descriptive File Name

Clear and Concise Content

  • Write in plain language, avoiding jargon.
  • Include info about each sheet in cell A1.
  • Give sheets concise and unique names to differentiate.

Accessible Link Text

Color and Contrast

  • Ensure the contrast ratio between text and background colors is at least 4.5:1 for normal text and 3:1 for large text (at least 18 point (typically 24px) or 14 point (typically 18.66px) and bold).
  • Do not use color as the only method to convey meaning.
    • Include an additional descriptive component such as text, patterns, or shapes.
  • Learn more about Contrast and Color Accessibility (WebAIM).

Accessible Images

Accessible Tables

  • Use a simple table structure.
  • Give tables a descriptive name.
  • Use table headers.
  • Avoid blank cells, columns, and rows.
    • If you must have blank cells, enter “no data.”
  • Place tables on a separate sheet for simpler navigation.
  • Use cell styles to indicate row headings.
  • Give tables a meaningful name on the Table Tools Design tab
  • Create clear labels for columns and rows.

Check for Accessibility

It is important to check the accessibility of digital content as you design, develop, or create it. The Check for Accessibility page has a list of commonly used checkers, guides, and checklists.