Website Regulatory Compliance & Why It’s So Important

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Companies that neglect website compliance with laws and regulations are often subject to numerous stress-inducing problems in our increasingly online society. For example, in 2018, many US companies, big and small, were subject to over 5,000 lawsuits for their non-compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Therefore, companies seeking to cut out this compliance risk and protect their businesses need to take great care of doing everything under regulations.

Whether in the US, Europe, or anywhere else globally, it’s paramount for companies with an online presence to ensure they’re meeting regulations and digitally protecting themselves. Here are some quick tips on what to keep in mind.

Consent, Cookies, and Privacy Policies

With these three main focal points, your website can protect itself by immediately clarifying what kind of data you’ll collect, how you’ll use it, and whether or not a person browsing your site agrees to this collection and use. In addition, having a privacy policy and consent agreement ensures that not only are you staying compliant with most country’s regulations for full disclosure, but you’re building trust with potential clients or users of your website. If you’re a business of any sort, you’ll always be looking for ways to build trust with clients.

Cookies and data trackers are helpful in that they allow you to see where people are browsing your content the most, what they click on, what the bounce rate might be, and where your site’s strengths are. Compliance with all of these areas of regulated requirements ensures that you’re protected and using all types of web content utilities.

Evaluate Any Shortcomings

Since laws and regulations are continually in a dynamic state of shifting, according to MirrorWeb, it’s essential to routinely conduct a compliance audit to ensure all of what you’re doing is up-to-date with local, federal, and even international online laws and regulations. Moreover, doing so is critical to protecting yourself and your company from future lawsuits or financial liability. Likewise, compliance is the foundation for proving your trustworthiness to clients and lawmakers, which can take years to build but only days to crumble.

These assessments often involve examining each layer of your website, including design, coding, functionality, and content. It’s also wise to consider the accessibility of your site to users with disabilities. Companies are often comparing VPAT and WCAG to ensure they meet the necessary accessibility standards for their website. While both VPAT (Voluntary Product Accessibility Template) and WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) help determine accessibility compliance, they have some differences in their approach.

It’s essential to act swiftly if something seems off, repairing any areas that fail to comply with regulations or laws of any degree. While some companies are non-compliant by mistake, keeping up-to-date with everything or even employing a CCO (Corporate Compliance Officer) can help mitigate future issues.

With Compliance Comes Results

From Cookies and Consent to a fully-vetted Privacy Policy, keeping your website compliant with the overwhelming amount of compliance laws can feel like a chore. But ultimately, if you make regulation and online law compliance a top priority, you will save yourself and your company time, money, and headaches.

However, remember that website law and regulation compliance cannot be done once and let go; it’s a dynamic process that requires regular maintenance. Therefore, it’s essential to continue evaluating and keeping up-to-date with local, national, and international regulations if you want to ensure your business thrives.