GDPR. A well-used term that 2 years ago changed the way in which we connect with customers. Is your website compliant with recent changes in guidelines surrounding cookies? It’s essential that you stay up to date with legislative changes to prevent the risk of fines and business reputational damage.
General Data Protection Regulation and how it connects with cookies
When the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was introduced, it meant big changes to data collection, protection and retention practices for many businesses. Especially with the threat of significant fines.
And then came along the changes to the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR). This put cookies and similar technologies that are used for storing and accessing information stored on a person’s device under strong scrutiny. Opt-ins became a key term used in every conversation about GDPR and PECR.
Know the rules around opting in
Before placing cookies on a user’s electronic device, you need full permission first – the customer needs to opt-in to the use of non-essential cookies.
You need to have a cookie control mechanism in the background of your site, blocking cookies until the customer agrees to non-essential cookie tracking. Essential cookies are considered ok, providing they are vital to the website working seamlessly for the customer – for example online banking security, or your online shopping basket items.
Encourage opt-ins by being honest
Be clear and concise about what cookies you want to place and track, and how you will use them.
Giving a link to a page for customers to find out more is a great way to show them how you responsibly handle their data. Customers want to know why you want their information, and what you plan to do with it. Telling them what you need their consent for can evolve scepticism from customers into trust which could result in a greater chance of the customer accepting the cookie clause.
It provides a journey filled with tailored ads, tracked activity, detailed reporting, and can improve customer service by way of remembering if a person is logged in to a member zone, and can offer personalised customer content.
However, it does have a downside too. A flaw to consider is that reporting may not tell the whole truth about your website activity, for example Google Analytics could potentially show only a fraction of real visits and sessions to your website, as people may choose not to opt-in.
Let’s keep your business compliant
This is one section of your website planning you can’t get wrong. If you haven’t already added the cookies acceptance to your website, then Marketing Square can help you with your opt-in for a one-off fee.
If you prefer to have this as part of a website maintenance package, we can ensure you’re compliant when legislation changes, or guidelines as deadlines move. We work with many businesses on highlighting any changes taking place and what it means for you.