Version: WCAG 2.0 and up
Number: 1.4.1
Level: A
  • Figures
  • Forms
  • Links
  • Tables

Color is not used as the only visual means of conveying information, indicating an action, prompting a response, or distinguishing a visual element.



The purpose of this success criterion is to ensure that sighted users who cannot perceive color (e.g., color blindness) are able to understand content that makes use of color.

How to Meet

To meet this success criterion, authors must ensure that color is not the only way to identify or understand information and instructions in the content.

A common example is that hyperlinks should not only be distinguishable from the surrounding text by a difference in color. There should also be another visual cue like an underline or bolding.

Similarly, a pie chart must not only be understandable by the color of the slices (e.g., a text descriptor or patterned background would also be needed).


This success criterion is not applicable to making the use of color understandable to assistive technologies (e.g., to identify sidebars). The Non-text Content success criterion covers these requirements.

Additional Information

The following knowledge base pages provide more information about how to address this success criterion for publishing content: