GDPR in USA - we use cookies

Most of my clients are US based and most practise solely in their local area. So why should they care about GDPR? The answer, in a nutshell, is Google.

GDPR is a European-driven initiative that you’re seeing all over the web. It mostly shows up as a “We use cookies” pop-up. If a European citizen lands on a website and is not notified of their privacy rights and cookie usage, you are in breach of GDPR.

So that’s where it gets interesting. Should a person from Europe read your blog posts or do a search and your site shows up, then both you and the search engine (Google) are in breach. Sure, Brussels probably won’t come after you but they sure as hell are keeping their eye on Google (and Bing I imagine).

Which means that Google has an incentive to get you to implement GDPR. Their main tool to persuade is through their search algorithm. There is no word yet that they are dinging you on SEO for not having implemented GDPR but I’d bet they are (or will be soon). And why take the risk of losing your search rankings?

What’s the best way to implement GDPR? First off, a caveat, if you’re a heavy cookie user and your visitors enter sensitive data, then get tailored advice from an attorney. If, like most, cookies are just for user experience, then follow this two-step plan:

  1. Review your cookie policy in your privacy policy page – which you should already have – and ensure it’s accurate.
  2. Install and configure a lightweight pop-up plugin from developers such as CookieBot or WebToffee

And you’re done!

Further Reading:

CookieBot has a comprehensive article What is GDPR?

Forbessays that Yes, The GDPR Will Affect Your U.S.-Based Business

Google’s Commitment to GDPR


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