Cookie law is still confusing a lot of businesses, especially ecommerce companies where implementing an opt in policy can be problematic. For ecommerce retailers cookie law is proving tricky for a number of reasons:
1. Ecommerce companies rely on Google Analytics. They need to see where customers are coming from and what online marketing activity is proving most successful, driving traffic and sales.
3. There are so many cookies that websites have come to rely on for their day to day running. Addthis, Youtube and many others generate cookies. If a customer does not agree, these programmes may need to be disabled.
As far as we have seen there are a number of different approaches to cookie policies. We have highlighted some of these below:
1. Getting full agreement from customers before tracking
The other main downside is that the ecommerce site will only get analytical data on customers that opt in. This will skew data, especially as you may find that only 10% of customers opt in to cookies.
3. Including an unobrusive popup bar giving customers the opportunity to opt out.
This is the approach that John Lewis seems to be taking. Customers can pick and choose cookies that they would like to disable and John Lewis makes it clear that if they disable cookies entirely they will be unable to purchase.
Online retailers must implement something, as the ICO may start implementing fines. I would expect that some of the big high street brands may be the first to get fined and they seem to be doing very little to comply. Watch this space.
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