Cookie Consent Policies: What are They and Why You Need Them

Cookie consent notices are now everywhere, cheerfully popping up every time you open a website.  Today every website in the EU is required to display cookie consent notices after the relevant EU directive was signed by all member countries in 2011. However, even if your site is not hosted in the EU but is accessed by or targeted at EU consumers, you may be required to display a cookie notice on your site.

What is the Cookie Law?  

This is basically a piece of legislation requiring websites to obtain consent from visitors about the data that is collected about them as they use that particular site. The law requires that the website must give consumers a choice to allow this data gathering or not.

Why You Need a Cookie Policy


Most websites, especially those that deal in e-commerce, need to comply with the law because they could face stiff fines otherwise. This is particularly true for the websites of large business or commercial brands. Depending on the nature of the site, non-compliance can even result to the site being shut down.  Even if you are running a small, obscure website and do not often get visitors from all over the world including the EU, putting up a policy still makes absolute sense. Compared to the consequences, the cost of compliance is very small.

Website trustworthiness  

Non-compliance with data privacy policies often results in a site being labeled as insecure or unsafe. Consumers tend to avoid engaging in sites that are considered privacy and security risks and this poses dire consequences for the visibility and viability of the website. 

Ease of set-up and Use 

Website owners do not need to hire a developer to put up a cookie policy on their site. A lot of third-party programs allow websites to directly setup and install cookie policy codes that can be integrated into the existing HTML system of any site. There are many policy templates that are free, allowing website owners to be fully compliant with data privacy laws in just a matter of minutes. 

Cookie and privacy policies allow users to be informed about what's happening to their data when they use your site. Putting these policies up are also hallmarks of a website's compliance, making it easier to trust. And with the ease with which to set up a cookie consent policy on any website, there's no reason why you should continue operating a website without these consent policies in place.