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Website Privacy Policies & Website Privacy Policy Basics

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An often-overlooked part of building and maintaining a website are items on the website related to compliance with various laws. This article focuses on website privacy policies & website privacy policy basics. In the simplest of terms, EVERY website on the planet should have a privacy policy.

What Is A Website Privacy Policy?

A website privacy policy is a legal document that “lives” on your website, accessible by a privacy policy link. This document informs site visitors how you collect, store, use, share, and protect the personal data of your site visitors. Your company’s privacy policy should explain the privacy practices of your business or nonprofit.

Why Do I Need A Privacy Policy On My Website?

International privacy laws require organizations to clearly inform visitors to their website about what data is collected and why, how the information will be used or shared, and how it is secured.

Of note, even small businesses & nonprofits need to have a website privacy policy. Why? If you’re doing something as simple as applying Google Analytics to your website to gather data about who’s visiting your website, what pages are most popular, and what browsers or devices are being used, you’re collecting data on site visitors. If you’ve got a code snippet for Google Analytics on your site to gather this type of information, you need to inform site visitors of the data you’re collecting about them – even for small businesses & nonprofits.

Where Should I Locate A Privacy Policy Link On My Website?

Privacy policies should be easy to find – with a link that says: “PRIVACY POLICY.” The universal place to position a privacy policy link is down in the footer – at the very bottom of your website pages.

76% of internet users think companies should do more to protect their data online.
Source: Global Consumer State of Mind Report, 2021

Benefits Of Having A Privacy Policy On Your Website

There are 3 main benefits of pursuing publicity for your company or non-profit:
1) Comply With Internet Privacy Laws: When you post a privacy policy on your website, you are complying with a variety of laws, both in the United States and globally.
2) Minimize Risk: These days, there are plenty of predatory individuals and groups who spend their time looking for companies or non-profits to sue for violating their privacy. By posting a clear, concise privacy policy on your website, it helps prevent legal predators from trying to extort money from your company with a frivolous lawsuit.
3) Enhance Your Credibility: When a privacy policy is available on your website, it enhances the credibility of your website and your organization because it means you’re following privacy laws & respecting your site visitors.

Options For Generating A Privacy Policy

Option 1: DIY Free Privacy Policy: There are plenty of templates for free privacy policies on the internet. The problem with these so-called free options is that there’s no guarantee that they are written correctly or that they incorporate the latest changes in privacy laws.

Option 2: Third-party Privacy Policy Subscription: There are a number of businesses that provide privacy policies by annual subscription. You pay the annual fee, and a set-up fee from a web developer – and as privacy laws and requirements change, the privacy policy on your website automatically will be updated. THIS is the option that we recommend because it provides the most protection, is affordable, and has an automated mechanism for updating the privacy policy on your website. If you’re interested in getting your website into compliance, contact us. We offer a privacy policy subscription service and set up that’s affordable and fast to deploy.

Option 3: Custom Privacy Policy From An Attorney: You also could hire an attorney who specializes in privacy laws and have them draft a customized privacy policy to display on your site. But this would be VERY expensive and require extensive updates over the years, where you have to pay an attorney to research changes in the laws and update your custom privacy policy as laws change.

The most cost-effective and generally effective way to place a privacy policy on your website is the “subscription” option. If you’d like to pursue this option, contact DeWinter Marketing & PR – and we’ll get you set up with a reputable privacy policy service for an affordable price.

Need help with placing a privacy policy on your website? Contact DeWinter Marketing & PR for assistance.


Courtney DeWinter is the president & founder of Denver-based DeWinter Marketing & PR in Denver, Colorado. She is a marketing & PR consultant with 25+ years of experience in branding, marketing, public relations, websites & journalism.

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