Ann Winter
Ann Winter

Member Article

Kino Creative on EU Cookie Directives: part 2

The EU “cookie“ directives cover all kinds of electronic data storage, not just cookies, but cookies are causing the biggest noise. The law requires informed consent from site visitors before cookies are set, potentially stalling traffic to the site. Newcastle-based web design agency Kino Creative have commissioned a series of articles suggesting ways for SMEs to comply while explaining the cookie laws, which Ann Winter has summarised for Bdaily.

Maximising opt-in requests

The online community is in uproar over the EU cookie directives. According to Econsultancy 82% of a 700 strong sample of marketers ‘did not believe the cookie law was a positive development’, citing personalised retargeting ads as a potential casualty. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), responsible for interpreting and enforcing the law, experienced a shocking 90% drop in traffic after seeking site visitors’ permissions to set cookies, supporting the view that when given a choice, most people will opt out.

There is some evidence to suggest however that despite the legal emphasis on informed consent, site user’s decisions to opt in or opt out of cookies are based on very different criteria, most notably speed of access. Working from this perspective, BT’s opt-in request pop-up informs visitors that cookies are set on the site in order to maintain a high standard of service, then asks if they want to change the settings. According to a spokeswoman, most customers are choosing to maintain the existing settings, in other words, accept the cookies.

Kino Creative has designed a free pop-up opt-in request plug-in for Wordpress, which they installed on their site, to measure the impact on site traffic. Download the plug-in for free, add your own message and read the results of their experiment in my post in this series on the pros and cons of compliance.

Next in this series: Are the EU cookie directive already out of date?

Previously in this series: Audit your cookies

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ann Winter .

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