24 Aug

4 Best Steps to ADA Compliance

What is ADA?

In 1990, President George H. W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) into a law. This law is designed to prevent discrimination against individuals because of their disabilities. About 57 million Americans live with disabilities, including vision or hearing impairment, difficulty lifting or grasping things, or a mental or emotional impairment.

In the past 27 years, the internet has changed the way people use media, access and purchase goods and services, and gather information. This has introduced new challenges for people with disabilities, and many are often unable to fully participate in online activities as either a consumer or employee. ADA seeks to open doors for more than half of these people who currently use the internet.

How does ADA affect business?

In January 2017, the United States Access Board published a rule regarding information and communications technologies (ICTs). This rule addresses accessibility standards specifically in areas developed, procured, maintained, or used by federal agencies, such as how physical technology works with existing assistive technologies like JAWS, NVDA, braille keyboards, or voice-overs. These changes take effect in January 2018.

Though this rule directly refers only to standards for federal agencies, the private sector is being hit by “drive-by” lawsuits. Individuals are surfing the web with the intent of finding accessibility violations on websites. Lawsuits are filed, sometimes without warning or complaint.

Though there is not yet an official standard for website accessibility, courts have referenced Website Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). Many courts are interpreting website accessibility as part of the currently existing standards for physical structures.

For example, in the recent South Florida ruling of Gill v. Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., a visually impaired man sued a chain grocery store. The judge considered Winn-Dixie’s website a connection to the physical stores because the website offered coupons, location information, and prescription refills.

What is WCAG and how does it help?

Created to help guide web content creators and designers as they make their sites more accessible, WCAG is a set of standards directly linked to ADA compliance.

WCAG 2.0 offers 12 guidelines in the following four categories: Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, and Robust. Each guideline contains testable “success criteria” which can be used to measure the usability of your website.

4 Steps To ADA Compliance

  1. Determine your website’s compliance with WCAG 2.0 Level AA guidelines. While Level AAA is considered the most accessible, meeting all of these criteria isn’t always possible.
  2. Conduct an internal audit. A number of free tools include: AChecker, WAVE, and Functional Accessibility Evaluator (F.A.E.). Currently, there is no officially approved audit tool.
  3. If auditing your own site is not your area of expertise, look for help from a third party. At Aqua Vita, we can help you upgrade to an ADA-compliant, user-friendly site that attracts this new customer base.
  4. Have your web development team correct any violations discovered in the audit.

Why should I make my website ADA compliant?

These legal requirements are looming on the horizon. Creating a more usable and accessible website:

  1. Saves money and hassle now by protecting your business from costly, drive-by lawsuits.
  2. Builds a larger customer base.
  3. Provides PR with your local and web communities by letting them know you care for and serve those in need.

Though the accessibility guidelines require technical work, you can adapt while increasing your customer base and providing better services for your communities.

Need help? Call (918) 518-5907 for a free website ADA compliance audit.

26 Jun

Global Ransomware Attack Shakes Servers

Global ransomware attacks hit Europe, US, Russia

Website Server Security Threat

Here at Aqua Vita, we strive to provide the very best and safest services possible. Criminal hackers are constantly looking for a way to fatten their wallets by holding you and your resources ransom. Such an event just occurred globally this past week.

You may or may not have noticed some inconvenience when your web servers had some “unexpected maintenance.” Behind the scenes, our server techs at SiteGround battled a global ransomware attack. SiteGround won.

Read the BBC story here.

Within the hour, all our sites were back up safely.

Company Data Security

All around the globe, massive industries and companies were held hostage. Chernobyl nuclear power plant had to manually monitor its radiation levels. An international server company could not fix the problem and paid 1M to recover their data. In the US, Merk and DLA Piper and other companies have been affected at the company level.

Read Kaspersky’s ransomware report & security tips.

SiteGround techs said in the last two years they have only encountered two attacks of this magnitude. At Aqua Vita, we want to take a moment to celebrate the massive victory won for you, and to help you be prepared for the future.

Key Security Points

  • Update Windows
  • Backup key data
  • Check your security software to ensure ransomware detection

How Secure is Your Website?

Looking for a more secure option? Aqua Vita is here for you. Questions? Let us know!

Get a Free 42-Point Website Audit

Including security, speed, and Google usability standards.

Call us at (918) 518-5907 today!

04 May

Case Study: Construction Seminars

Constructions Seminars navigates the rough waters of licensing, bonding, business, testing, and education for the construction industry.

Clearing a path for small business owners to be successful is their passion. Helping to expand their influence in the construction community is our privilege.

Google Analytics

By adding analytics to the Construction Seminars website, Aqua Vita uncovered that 58% of their visitors use mobile devices.

Before teaming up with Aqua Vita, Construction Seminars didn’t have a mobile website. Now, they’re able to reach more customers than ever.

The Results

  • 61% increase in website interaction within two months
  • Improved Google search visibility
  • 71% conversion rate
  • 21 new items purchased within 6 weeks
  • Increase in new visitor traffic
  • Increase in web pages visited and time spent per page

“The team at Aqua Vita went the extra mile for our company, Construction Seminars. They really got to know our business, how it functions, who our customers are, and how best to communicate our message to them.

“We are already seeing an increase in response and are now appearing on the first page of the search engines. We love our new site!”

Bob Delahunt, Owner

Need to upgrade your eCommerce site?

Call us today: (918) 518-5907

25 Nov

A Time to Give Thanks

The weather chills and our hearts warm as we take a moment to give thanks. As family and friends, we come together to celebrate all the good things in our lives.

Happy Thanksgiving

Our family at Aqua Vita gathered to say what we’re most grateful for this year. And we discovered we were all thankful for the very same thing…

Our clients!

We are so thankful to work for great people who make the world and their community a better place to live.

You inspire us. You bring hope, purpose, and laughter into our lives. You are the reason we succeed. You are the best.

We’re so glad to be part of your amazing story.
We love celebrating your successes. We’re honored to be there for you in difficult times. What a gift to know such excellent people!

So on this Thanksgiving, remember we are thankful for you.
For your hard work, for your late nights, for your dedication and passion.

May God bless and keep you, your family, and your business.
May you enjoy the fruits of your labor this season.

29 Oct

Golf Fore Food: Designing for Charity

Why We Give Back

At Aqua Vita, we feel it’s important to take the time to give back to the community both intentionally and as opportunities arise to do something creative and benevolent.

The Golf Fore Food logo is something we designed for a charity event sponsored by local businesses. The Pro/Am golf event results in a large donation annually to a local food bank and the feeding of around 43,000 families this year.

The Process

Our branding process is unique to each charity. We focus on the who they are and what we have to offer them. Who are they? Whom do they help? What is the “Why?” unique to their charity? All the other aspects of the work fall into place when those questions are answered.

The Real Donation

In all, designing for a good cause often unifies our team more than anything else we do. Not because we’re donating our time and talents, but these designs give us the opportunity to remember why we do what we do.

I was once asked this question, “If you could manage it financially, would you do the job you’re doing for free?” If the answer to that is “Yes!” than you’re life is more rich than most. – Jonathan Cox, Creative Director

We adapt during this process in new ways, and thus, develop an additional sense of appreciation for those we are serving. It’s a fascinating (albeit occasionally frustrating) process that’s chock full of rewards on the back end.

The Best Part

When it goes right, it means that we get to empower an organization that will be a light in the world. And for Aqua Vita Creative – being a part of that is the best it can get.

Do you want to give more of your time, self, or money back to the community? Contact us for ways you can help!

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