Why You Need a Privacy Policy on Your Website in 2023

When I’m working with new clients, one of the most important questions that I like to ask early on in the process is what sort of pages they’d like to have. When I know this, I’m better able to organise the framework to support these pages, create easy navigation between them, and organise content so we’re able to provide the sort of experiences that visitors will expect when they’re on each page.

As you can probably imagine, there are some page types that almost everyone wants. A homepage, of course. Usually an ‘about’ page. Often a services or products page. Sometimes a blog. But most of the time, there’s one thing that clients will completely overlook: a page for their privacy policy.

What is a privacy policy?

A privacy policy is a statement which tells customers how you’re going to manage any personal data that you collect from them. For example, imagine you’re adding a form to your website that allows visitors to sign up for newsletters. You may ask for a visitor’s name, email address, or even company if you’re in the B2B sector. A privacy policy will explain exactly why you need that information, what you’re going to do with it, how long you’ll keep it, and how you’ll get rid of it when you don’t need it.

Why is a privacy policy important?

Well firstly, it’s important because it keeps you out of trouble! A privacy policy is now a legal requirement for any business that collects personal data. As you’ll need to make a copy of your policy available at the time data is collected, it’s easiest to make a page for it on your business website.

But it’s about more than just compliance.

Having a privacy policy on your website is one of the smartest moves you can make when it comes to building customer trust and developing valuable, long-term relationships with quality leads.

Say you’ve collected a visitor’s email address. Are you going to use that just to send newsletters, or are you going to send other types of communications, too? Are you going to sell this email address to mailing list companies? Are you going to sign your leads up for a Tesco account? I mean, I’d really like to think you wouldn’t. But the fact is that your website visitors just don’t know. You could be planning to do anything with their data. And naturally, that makes them wary of sharing it with you.

A privacy policy makes it clear what the intended purpose is, and ensures visitors understand that their data will only be used in this way, in accordance with UK legislation. When they know they’re not going to get spammed with sales emails, they’ll feel more at ease providing their details.

Will everyone read your privacy policy? Absolutely not! But that’s beside the point. It’s not so much the content of the policy that matters, it’s more the fact that you have one. You’re saying, ‘This is what we’re collecting, this is why, and this is how we’re going to handle it.’ You’re being transparent, open, honest, and clear with your customers. And at the end of the day, that’s what really matters.

How to get a privacy policy

You can write one yourself, use an online template, or have one tailored to your organisation drafted by a GDPR expert. We’d always recommend consulting an expert in legal compliance if you’re processing any significant amount of personal data on your website.

If you’d like to discuss website privacy further, just get in touch or book a call.

About the Author

I'm Chloe, and I want to help you get results from your website!

I’ve been designing and building websites that help businesses get more visitors, more leads and better customers for the last 10 years.

Chloe Briggs of Fifteen Three Digital

Chloe Briggs
Founder & Website Consultant

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