Your website needs to comply with a wide range of federal, state and even local laws, some of which you are probably not even aware of.
Being non-compliant not only puts you at risk of suffering significant financial costs, but also the cost to your reputation. Why risk your money and your business reputation, when you can protect yourself so inexpensively?
In this post, we review a simple and inexpensive WordPress solution that can help make your website legally compliant in minutes.
Is Your Website Or Blog Legally Compliant?
As the internet continues growing at breakneck speed and the rules constantly change, it’s important to stay informed about what’s going on and to make sure that your website or blog remains compliant with all laws and regulations, especially if your digital presence is a significant aspect of your business strategy.
If there are no legal pages on your web site (e.g. terms of service, privacy statement, legal disclaimers, etc.), many sites such as Google won’t let you advertise, sites like ClickBank won’t let you list your digital products for sale, PayPal could shut down your account and freeze your funds, Facebook could suspend your web applications, and you won’t be accepted into most leading advertising and merchant networks.
Plus, you may also be inadvertently leaving yourself open and vulnerable to litigation.
At the very least, if your business online is not in compliance, expect visitor trust and confidence in your business to seriously diminish.
(In addition to legal and regulatory compliance, most 3rd-party websites require you to comply with their policies and guidelines!)
Disclaimer: Please note that we are not lawyers and we cannot offer legal advice in this article.
The purpose of this article is to make you aware that:
- Your website may be subject to a number of legal requirements in accordance with compulsory laws that govern your business,
- The importance of maintaining compliance with the terms of service of third-party providers whose products or services you are offering or endorsing on your website, and
- There are solutions for WordPress users that can help your website become more compliant, such as the solution that we discuss in this post.
If you suspect that your website lacks in aspects of compliance, we discuss below a simple WordPress plugin you should know more about.
Our WordPress Plugin Of The Month Is …
Compliance Bar Plugin – WordPress Plugin For Website Compliance
Compliance Bar Plugin is a complete compliance & disclaimer solution for your online business …
Learn more about the plugin here: Compliance Bar
Benefits Of Using Compliance Bar Plugin
Below we have listed just a few of the benefits of using Compliance Bar to make your web site instantly legally compliant:
Quick And Simple To Install And Implement. Ready To Go To Work In Very Little Time.
Compliance Bar installs like any other plugin. Just upload the plugin file to your Plugins folder via your dashboard and activate.
Compliance Page Templates Are Easy To Edit
Easily edit the default templates inside Compliance Bar from the settings menu with the visual editor.
Dedicated 24/7 Plugin Support
The plugin developers provide dedicated 24/7 plugin support to assist users with anything they need.
Additional benefits and advantages include:
- Customized Legal Page Templates: The plugin will create your legal pages in seconds and customizes them to your business and website.
- Complete Video Training: Compliance Bar is not complicated to use - a complete library of training videos is provided.
- Can Be Used In Every Country: As long as you consult someone who is qualified to give you legal advice to make sure that the legal page templates provided in the plugin are suitable and satisfactory for your business, country and website, you can use the plugin anywhere in the world.
- Can Be Used For Any Website Purpose: As long as your website is built with WordPress, you can use the plugin for all website purposes. Just select the templates you need to include in your site and ignore all other unnecessary pages.
Compliance Bar Plugin offers a number of great features to WP users. Below we have listed just a few:
- Fast and simple to install and use. Ready to use in very little time.
- Show Attractive Icons – Compliance Bar will display links to your legal pages using attractive icons that can be placed on different locations in your page. You can also upload your own icons.
- Show Sensitive Content – If you plan to display content that needs to be restricted to certain age groups (e.g. information related to alcohol, ecigs, adult, etc.), you can display pop-ups that require users to accept your site’s terms or disclaimers.
- EU Cookie Compliance – If your business is based in Europe or display your content to visitors in the EU, you must be aware of EU compliance requirements. The plugin displays an attractive bar notifying users and covering your business from non-compliance.
- Records And Stores IP Acceptance – The plugin records your visitors’ IP address for future reference, just in case someone accepts your terms or disclaimers and then claims they didn’t.
- Shortcodes – Compliance Bar uses shortcodes that populate templates with your personal information. These shortcodes also allow you to place information anywhere on your site or blog, (including the popups).
- Compatible With All Mobile Devices – Compliance Bar has settings for displaying on mobile devices and will display mobile optimized icons automatically depending on the mobile browser being used.
Plugin Features – Details
Once the Compliance Bar plugin has been installed, the plugin’s “Settings” screen will be added to your WP backend.
Let’s briefly review these areas …
There are a number of default categories in this screen where your business details can be entered (e.g. “Contact Name,” “Registered Business Address,” “Contact Phone,” “Company Registration Number,” etc.). Not all categories are compulsory, but some are (e.g. “Contact Name,” “Company Phone Number,” etc.)
(Compliance Bar Plugin User Profile Section – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
Compliance Bar uses dynamic shortcodes to automatically insert and display the information inside your legal pages …
(Compliance Bar User Profile Section: Shortcodes – Image source: plugin documentation)
Once the minimum required (i.e. compulsory) information has been entered into the plugin settings fields, users can then access the other plugin section.
The “Compliance Pages” screen includes a list of all of the legal page templates …
(Compliance Bar: Legal Templates – Image source: plugin documentation)
Here’s the full list of template pages made available by the plugin last time we checked the site:
- About Us
- AdSense Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreements
- Affiliate Disclosure Statement
- Amazon Affiliate Disclaimer
- Anti-Spam Policy
- Contact Us
- Copyright/DCMA Notice
- Double Dart Cookies
- Earnings Disclaimer
- External Links Policy
- FTC Statement
- Legal Disclaimer
- Linking Policy
- Medical Disclaimer
- Returns/Refund Policy
- Terms & Conditions
- Testimonial Disclosure
- Adult Content Disclosure
Creating legal pages for your site is a simple process. Just select the checkboxes next to the pages you want to create and click ”Save” in the “Compliance Pages” area …
(Compliance Bar Plugin: Legal Page Templates – Image source: plugin documentation)
Your legal pages will then be created and added to the “Pages” section of your WordPress site.
Compliance Bar Icons
The plugin comes with a built-in set of icons for referencing your legal pages …
The icons are customizable. You can purchase an additional set of icons from the plugin developer, or create/upload your own to match the style of your theme …
(Compliance Bar: Compliance Template Icons – Image sourced from plugin documentation)
Edit / Delete Compliance Pages
You can easily edit and delete your legal disclaimer templates from the “Compliance Pages” screen, just as you would any typical page in WordPress …
(Compliance Bar Plugin: Edit Compliance Templates – Image source: plugin documentation)
- Editing is recommended, as the pages contain generic content.
- The plugin will notify you if it detects existing similar pages on your site (e.g. pages created before you installed the plugin).
The plugin settings area provides many options to customize the Compliance Bar, including position, whether to show links or icon images, background colors and images, image size, selecting which pages to include an icon for in the Compliance Bar, whether or not to display the Compliance bar on your home page, which pages the Compliance Bar will display in, mobile settings, and offset distance …
(Compliance Bar Screen: Create Bar – Image source: plugin documentation)
- You can create more than one Compliance Bar to show different icons on different pages, or to cover a multitude of uses throughout your website.
- The plugin allows you to display the Compliance Bar on the front page of your site, even if you are using particular WordPress theme frameworks (e.g. Genesis, Thesis or WooThemes), where the home page is configured through the theme settings as a built-in template, and not as a “regular” WordPress page.
- Due to the smaller size of mobile device screens, there is a limit to the number of page icons you can display if you turn Mobile Settings “on.”
Once you have configured your Compliance Bar settings, it will display links to your legal using a visually appealing icon bar on your site …
You have complete control over the location on your pages where you would like your compliance bar to display …
If you plan to display content that may be restricted to certain age groups (e.g. content related to alcohol, tobacco, dating, etc.), you can display pop-ups that force users to accept your website’s terms and disclaimers.
The “Create Pop Up” page gives you complete control over the settings and wordings of your pop ups …
(Pop Ups Section: Create Pop Up – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
You can create more than one Pop Up for different pages, or to cover a multitude of uses in other sections of your site …
You can also specify a delay time to prevent Pop Ups from displaying as soon as visitors arrive, set a cookie duration to prevent Pop Ups from appearing again within a specific time period, and store the IP addresses of visitors who accept your terms and disclaimers for future reference …
(Pop Ups Section: IP Log Details – Image source: plugin documentation)
If you do business in Europe or display your content to visitors in the EU, you must be aware of EU compliance requirements …
Compliance Bar lets you edit the settings for compliance with EU User Cookies requirements, including the wording of your notification message and link text in the “EU Cookies” section …
(EU Cookies Section: Manage Settings – Image source: plugin documentation)
Compliance Bar has a non-intrusive way of notifying your visitors and covering you from non-compliance.
The “Page Templates” screen, lists all of your legal templates and shortcodes, and lets you modify the page content …
The “General Settings” area, lets you access general information, such as promoting and sharing the plugin and getting plugin updates …
Testimonials From Plugin Users
Here are a few of the testimonials plugin users have written about the Compliance Bar plugin:
”I got a chance to review the Compliance Bar plugin…WOW!! I have to say that its definitely one of the most NECESSARY, yet easiest to use plugin’s to hit the scene in a while. Very Solid Product. Great job Anton & team!” Shon Chris – Director (JV Peer Group)
“Don’t Risk Your Online Business” Mike Thomas (The Mike From Maine Show)
Below are a few extra ways you can use Compliance Bar:
- Display compliance icons on specific pages only.
- Reduce refund disputes by clearly spelling out refund terms before customers purchase.
- If your site published adult content, you can force visitors to click to confirm that they are of legal age to access your content.
Compliance Bar provides users with dedicated plugin support to help users. Users also have access to an entire set of training videos.
Additionally, your purchase is backed by a no-risk, 30 day, 200% refund guarantee. If your version of Compliance Bar does not work within 30 days of purchase and it cannot be fixed within 48 hrs (Monday to Friday), your money will be refunded in double.
- Single – Install the plugin on 1 domain that you own. Price = $47 (Normally $127)
- Business – Can be installed on 25 sites that you own. Cost = $67.00 (Normally $197).
- Professional – Install the plugin on all as many of your own sites as you want. Can be installed on any client site as part of a paid service. Cost = $97.00.
Please Note: The cost to purchase the Compliance Bar Plugin product depends on whether there are any promotions or limited-time special offers. When we last checked, the software is being retailed for the amounts shown above. This may not be the actual price charged by the software developer when you visit the product site and you may be shown additional upsells or one-time offers after purchasing.
Check the plugin’s website for the latest pricing information here: Compliance Bar Plugin – WordPress Website Compliance Plugin
Compliance Bar Plugin – Additional Info
Legal Page Templates Reviewed By Lawyers – The plugin developers claim on their website that all legal page templates have been reviewed and approved by a lawyer. Nonetheless, we highly recommend that you get advice from a qualified legal expert in your area for peace of mind.
For a demo video of the plugin, including installation instructions and tutorials, FAQs, support helpdesk, contact details and more, visit the Compliance Bar Plugin website.
The Bottom Line
Compliance Bar is an easy-to-use, simple and cost-effective solution for WordPress-powered sites. We recommend downloading and installing this plugin for WordPress users if you want immediate peace of mind and legal protection.
For complete details, visit the plugin website: Compliance Bar Plugin – Compliance Bar Plugin – Compliance Plugin For WordPress
Disclaimer: Once again, please note that we are not lawyers and we offer no legal advice on our website. Do your own due diligence and consult a legal expert about the best way of ensuring that your website fully complies with the law wherever your business is based.