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Should I use a free cookie banner?

Cookie banners are crucial in securing user consent. Let's discuss free cookie banner generators, including their impact on user experience, compliance, and privacy.
Read time
3 min read
Published
May 24, 2023
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In today's digital age, data privacy paramount. Businesses collecting, using, and retaining customer data must do so while upholding individual privacy. To legally acquire consumer data, companies must request consent from website visitors. Cookie banners play a crucial role in providing a clear and lawful method for obtaining user consent.

Let's explore what a cookie banner is, why it's important, and how to implement the best free cookie banner solutions for your business.

What is a cookie banner?

A cookie consent banner, also known as a cookie warning banner or a cookie banner, is a notification that appears on apps and websites in the form of banners or pop ups, asking users to accept or reject cookies. It informs users about how the website uses cookies, complying with data protection regulations like GDPR and CCPA, and fostering trust by ensuring users are aware of how their data is being utilized.

Read more: What is a third-party cookie?

Why cookie banners are important

Understanding the importance of a cookie banner is important for website owners. Let's delve into why implementing a website cookie notice is not just a legal requirement but also a critical step in enhancing user trust, ensuring transparency, and safeguarding user privacy.

Do I really need a cookie banner?

Using a cookie banner is not only a legal requirement under legislation such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) but also essential for building user trust. Clear and transparent communication about data usage helps users feel secure and informed.

All websites that cater to consumers in Europe and/or the United States need a cookie policy in their website to comply with data privacy laws. That said, it’s good practice for all businesses to comply with the GDPR and the CCPA, especially since international markets are taking steps to put more value on data privacy.

Josh Grossman, Customer Success Lead at Ketch

Read more: Do I need a cookie policy on my website?

Is it illegal to not have a cookie banner?

Not having a cookie banner can be illegal in regions with strict data privacy laws like the EU's GDPR. These laws require informing users about data collection and obtaining their consent. Non-compliance can result in fines and legal issues.

Benefits of using a free cookie banner generator

Implementing a cookie banner from scratch can be time-consuming and requires regular updates to comply with evolving laws. A free cookie banner generator simplifies this process by providing pre-written, regulation-compliant banner text and easy deployment options. These tools save time and resources, reducing the risk of non-compliance.

Read more: How to add cookie messages to your website

Key features of a compliant cookie banner

A free cookie consent generator tool can help create custom, regulation-compliant cookie banners without the need for extensive coding or legal expertise. A cookie message generator can ensure that the cookie message displayed to users is accurate, clear, and meets the required standards.

A compliant cookie banner should include:

  • Information about cookie usage and tracking technologies.
  • Explanation of the purpose of data collection.
  • Options for users to accept, reject, or customize cookie preferences.
  • Links to detailed cookie policies and settings.

Read more: Cookie compliance

Clarity and transparency are critical factors when analyzing cookie banner text and layout:

  • The language used in the banners is straightforward, ensuring users can easily understand their data rights
  • The layout is clean and unobtrusive, making the banners noticeable without disrupting the website's overall design.

Cookie banners need to blend in with the website design and be GDPR and CCPA-compliant. Having tools that offer pixel-perfect privacy banners come in handy to help create banners that not only meet regulatory requirements but also align with the website's aesthetic.

Ketch Free, for instance, has some of the best free cookie consent features that make it easy for website owners to comply with cookie consent laws. Ketch Free can provide pixel-perfect privacy banners that blend with your website's design, ensuring a smooth user experience while maintaining legal compliance. 

Read more: What to look for in a cookie banner

Understanding privacy regulations and cookie banner compliance

Free cookie popup requirements differ depending on specific privacy laws, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), and California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA).

Read more: Is your cookie consent banner compliant with privacy laws?

1. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

The General Data Protection Regulation is a Regulation in EU law on data protection and privacy in the EU and the European Economic Area, which came into effect on May 22, 2018. The GDPR cookie banner regulations are more explicit. A GDPR-compliant cookie banner must have the following requirements:

  • Clearly labeled button that allows users to accept cookies
  • Provides information on the cookie data usage
  • Purpose of the data collection
  • Link to cookie settings or customization
  • Information on whether the website shares user data with third parties

GDPR uses an opt-in approach to give cookie consent in a safe way for websites and make them stay compliant. Through the GDPR policy, websites drop cookies after the user has given consent. A "Cookie" button must be available to enable users to accept cookies.

You risk paying up to 4% of annual global revenue or 20 million Euros in fines, whichever is higher, if your website is not GDPR compliant.

Read more: What are some GDPR cookie consent examples?

2. California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) / California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA)

CCPA and CPRA are closely related. CPRA is a privacy policy that came into effect in 2020 and strengthens the CCPA that came into effect in 2018. The policies apply to businesses in California that meet the following conditions:

  • Earns a revenue of $25 Million-plus in revenue
  • Processes data of 50,000 Consumers, Households, or devices
  • Generates a minimum of 50 percent of its yearly income through the sale of personal information belonging to California residents

CCPA requires websites to inform users about the information they collect, its usage, and the parties that have access to the information.

With CCPA, users can opt out of the sale of personal information using the "Do Not Sell" button. Businesses must thus provide users with the ability to opt out using a link to an opt-out form on the homepage.

Implementing a free cookie banner on WordPress

WordPress website owners, just like other website owners, have the mandate to inform users about the use of cookies on their websites in line with the GDPR and CCPA privacy regulations.

A WordPress cookie consent plugin helps ensure compliance with privacy regulations by notifying visitors about the site's cookie usage. Website visitors can make informed decisions about the data they can share, enhancing transparency and trust between the business and the users.

If you Google “WordPress cookies plugin free,” there are several WordPress cookie consent plugin free options available.

However, incorporating some manual methods may lack some of the advanced features offered by dedicated plugins. For example, certain tools (like Ketch Free) offer more than just cookie consent banners. They provide easy implementation and configurable data policy templates, ensuring more comprehensive compliance with privacy laws like GDPR and CCPA.

Go further: Shopify cookie banner

The role of free cookie consent managers

A free cookie consent manager simplifies the process of creating, implementing, and managing cookie banners, ensuring compliance with changing privacy laws. Key features to look for include:

  • Customization options.
  • Ease of use.
  • Handling various types of cookies.

For example, Ketch Free goes beyond a simple cookie banner. It’s a free cookie banner AND consent management toolkit, offering features that include: 

  • Policy management
  • Consent management
  • Cookie consent
  • Mobile app consent
  • Digital policy and notice management
  • Privacy requests / DSR intake
  • Identity management
  • Jurisdictions

Effective cookie consent managers should include clear and concise cookie banner text examples, ensuring that users understand the language. This enhances user experience and contributes to building trust and transparency between the business and its customers.

Making your cookie banner decision

Cookie banner compliance is a crucial aspect of data privacy. It empowers users by providing transparency and control over their data while ensuring businesses comply with stringent privacy regulations. 

The best cookie consent manager examples can simplify the legal compliance process, making it an essential tool in any business's data privacy toolkit. Whether you select Ketch Free or another provider, make sure the tool meets your specific business needs for transparency, branding, and privacy laws you need to adhere to. 

Read time
3 min read
Published
May 24, 2023
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