Impact of GDPR on Your Website – Areas that Require Modification

If you have heard of the latest GDPR regulation and still confused how it affects your site, then you have come to the right page as we are going to discuss in detail the pages of your website which will be affected by this regulation.

What is GDPR?

To start with let us understand what is GDPR? It is short for General Data Protection Regulation which is a European Union law whose goal is to protect the user’s personal identity and improve the business standards of how they collect and store data.

GDPR gives users the flexibility to decide if they wish to share their personal data with the website or not and instructs websites to remain transparent and to comply with how the users want their data to be handled.

Is WordPress GDPR Compliant?

Many WordPress users assume that as WordPress is GDPR compliant, at least the latest updates are, hence they are following the regulation, but frankly you are not if you have not dug deeper. When you are using self-hosted WordPress, you are using a theme and many plugins to create the site. You need to verify if the theme and plugins comply with GDPR. Many themes do not comply with it that is one loophole you need to look for.

The next thing you need to verify is the plugins you use, a few of them may be collecting data hence mention those names clearly on your privacy policy page so that you are transparent about everything with your users. While most plugins have been updated to be GDPR compliant, a few are still not and needs work to be done.

Web Pages affected by GDPR:

Contact Forms:

Contact form is another page where you directly collect user data hence you will have to be transparent about storing the data or if you are using that data for marketing. Hence do not forget to take consent from the user that you will be adding them to your email list. Disable cookies for the contact form and if you get data deletion request, comply by it. To do all these, you just have to add a consent checkbox on your form explaining this detail clearly and let the user make an informed decision.

Google Analytics:

Almost every website owner track data through an Analytics software which means you are collecting data for understanding customer behavior. Now, you cannot stop analyzing data or else how will you improve your website? Hence, to be GDPR compliant, start anonymizing the data before you store it and add a privacy page where you take prior consent from the users for data storage and usage.

If you are using a WordPress website, then there are analytic plugins that have EU compliance addon which will automate the process.

Ecommerce:

If your site is an e-Commerce, then you will have to take extra precaution to make sure that your site is complying with all GDPR regulations.

Opt-in Forms for Email Marketing:

If you have a sign-up form for email marketing floating on your site, in the sidebar or footer then you need to add the consent checkbox here as well. Another option is to add a double opt-in where the user needs to confirm through confirming the request that is sent on their email.

Re-targeting Ads:

When running re-targeting ads based on users’ previous search history, you have to again take consent from them by providing a cookie notice on the site and do allow them to disagree if they are not interested to be re-targeted.

Final Thoughts:

GDPR has been implemented last year yet many websites fail to comply with these regulations. If yours is one of them, do not delay, you need to understand the regulation carefully and comply with it, ASAP.

But, do not get scared by it because the purpose of this regulation is not to get you, instead, the purpose is to protect the user data so that people can trust your website as you give them the right to choose how they wish to share their data.

Though this is only applicable in EU region, it should be implemented globally hence even if your site does not cater to that region, still abiding by it will only improve your credibility amongst your audience and boost your customers’ confidence in your brand which in turn will improve engagement rate and grow your revenue.

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