If your website isn’t compliant with laws designed to protect consumer rights, you’re breaking the law.
Being non-compliant puts you at risk of incurring both financial losses and the cost to your reputation. Why risk your money and your good reputation, when you can protect yourself so inexpensively?
In this article, we look at a simple and easy-to-install WordPress solution that can help make your website fully compliant in minutes.
Is Your Site Legally Compliant?
As the digital realm continues growing at breakneck speed and rules constantly change, it’s vitally important to stay informed about what’s going on and to make sure that your website remains compliant, especially if your online presence is an essential component of your overall business strategy.
Without legal pages on your website (e.g. terms of service, privacy statement, financial disclaimers, etc.), many third-party sites such as Google won’t let you advertise, sites like ClickBank won’t allow you to list your digital products for sale, PayPal may shut down your account and withhold payment of your funds, Facebook will suspend your web apps, and you will not be accepted into many leading advertising or merchant networks.
Plus, you could also be inadvertently leaving yourself open and vulnerable to lawsuits.
At the very least, if your business online is not in compliance, trust and confidence in your business could be damaged.
(In addition to legal and regulatory compliance, almost all 3rd-party websites require you to comply with their policies and guidelines!)
Legal Disclaimer: Please note that we are not lawyers and we cannot offer legal advice in this article.
The purpose of this post is to make you aware that:
- Your website may be subject to many legal requirements in accordance with mandatory federal, state and local laws that govern your business (some of which you may not even be aware of),
- The importance of remaining compliant with the terms of service of third-party providers whose products or services you may be offering or using on your website, and
- There are solutions that can help your business become compliant, such as the solution that we discuss in this post.
If you suspect that your website or blog lacks in areas of compliance, we discuss below a simple plugin for WordPress-driven websites and blogs you will probably be interested in using.
Our WordPress Plugin Of The Month Is …
- Compliance Bar – WordPress Website Compliance Plugin
Compliance Bar – WordPress Website Compliance Plugin
Compliance Bar is a complete compliance & disclaimer solution for your web presence …
For more details, visit the plugin site here: Compliance Bar Plugin
Below are just a few of the benefits and advantages of using Compliance Bar to make your website instantly compliant:
Quick And Easy Installation
Compliance Bar is quite easy to install. Simply upload the plugin file to your Plugins folder via your WordPress admin user account and activate.
Templates Are Really Easy To Edit
You can easily modify the built-in legal templates inside the plugin from the settings menu using the WordPress WYSIWYG editor.
The plugin developers provide a dedicated support team to help you.
Some additional benefits of using the plugin include the following:
- Customized Legal Page Templates: The Compliance Bar plugin creates your legal pages in seconds and customizes them to your business and website.
- Video Training Library: Compliance Bar is not difficult to use - an entire library of training videos is available.
- Can Be Used In Every Country: As long as you consult a qualified legal representative to make sure that the built-in templates provided in the plugin are suitable and satisfactory for your business, country and website, you can use the plugin wherever you are located.
- Can Be Used For All Niches: As long as your site is powered by WordPress, you can use the plugin for all website purposes. Select only the types of disclaimers that pertain to your specific business model (e.g. affiliate or CPA marketing, services, AdSense, AdWords, adult, medical, etc) and ignore any pages that are not necessary.
Compliance Bar provides a number of great features to WordPress users. Here are just a few:
- Quick and simple to install and implement. Ready to start using in no time.
- Display Attractive Icon Bar – The plugin displays links to your compliance pages in the form of attractive icons that can be placed anywhere on your page. You can also upload icons of your choice.
- Display Restricted Information – If your website has content that may be restricted to certain age groups (e.g. content related to alcohol, ecigs, dating, etc.), you can display pop-ups that force users to accept your website’s terms or disclaimers.
- EU User 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 that notifies visitors and protects your site from non-compliance issues.
- Record And Store IP Addresses – Compliance Bar records and stores the IP addresses of your visitors for future reference, just in case a visitor accepts your terms or disclaimers and then claims they haven’t.
- Shortcodes – Compliance Bar uses shortcodes to automatically populate the templates with your personal information. These shortcodes also allow you to place information anywhere on your website, (even in the popups).
- Compatible With Mobile Devices – Compliance Bar has settings for displaying on mobile devices and displays mobile optimized icons automatically depending on the mobile browser being used.
Compliance Bar Plugin Features – Details
Once the plugin is installed, a section where the plugin’s settings can be configured gets added to your WP dashboard.
Let’s briefly review these …
There are a number of default categories in this screen where your business information can be entered (e.g. “Contact Name,” “Registered Company Address,” “Location Details,” “Niche Area,” etc.). Not all categories are required, but some are (e.g. “Website URL,” “Support Desk URL,” etc.)
(Compliance Bar User Profile Page – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
The plugin uses dynamic shortcodes to insert the information from your User Profile fields inside your legal pages …
(Compliance Bar User Profile Screen: Shortcodes – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
Once the minimum required information has been input into the plugin settings fields, you can then access the other sections of the plugin.
The “Compliance Pages” section contains all of your templates …
(Compliance Bar: Compliance Pages – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
Below is the full list of template pages made available by the plugin when we last checked their website:
- About Us
- AdSense Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreements
- Affiliate Disclosure
- 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
You can easily create compliance pages for your website by simply selecting checkboxes and clicking ”Save” on the “Compliance Pages” screen …
(Compliance Bar Plugin: Legal Page Templates – Screenshot 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 is installed with a built-in set of attractive icons for referencing your legal pages …
The Compliance Bar icons can be changed. You can purchase additional icons from the plugin developer, or create/upload your own to match the style of your theme …
(Compliance Bar Plugin: Legal Page Icons – Image sourced from plugin documentation)
Edit / Delete Compliance Templates
You can easily edit and delete the legal templates from the “Compliance Pages” screen, just as you would any typical page in WordPress …
(Compliance Bar: Edit Legal Page Templates – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
- Editing the compliance pages is recommended, as the pages contain generic content.
- The plugin notifies you if it detects existing similar pages on your site (e.g. legal pages created before installing the plugin).
The plugin settings area provides various options to customize the Compliance Bar, including position, displaying links or icon images, background colors and images, image size, selecting which pages should be included in the Compliance Bar, whether or not to display the Compliance bar on your main page, which pages the Compliance Bar will display in, mobile settings, and offset distance …
(Compliance Bar Section: Create Bar – Image source: plugin documentation)
- You can create an unlimited number of Compliance Bars to show different disclaimers on different pages, or to cover a multitude of uses throughout your site.
- The plugin allows you to display a Compliance Bar on the main page of your website, even if you are using particular themes (like 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 devices, you can only select up to a certain number of page icons to display if you turn Mobile Settings “on.”
Once you have specified your Compliance Bar settings, it displays 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 icons to show …
If you plan to show content that needs to be restricted to certain age groups (e.g. information related to alcohol, ecigs, adult content, etc.), you can display pop-ups that require users to accept your terms or disclaimers.
The “Create Pop Up” screen lets you fully customize your pop ups …
(Pop Ups Section: Create Pop Up – Image source: plugin documentation)
You can create an unlimited number of customized Pop Ups for different pages, or to cover different uses throughout your site …
You can also specify a delay time to prevent Pop Ups from displaying immediately, set a cookie duration to prevent Pop Ups from displaying again within a specific time interval, and store the IP addresses of visitors who accept your terms and disclaimers for future reference …
(Pop Ups Section: IP Log Details – Screenshot source: plugin documentation)
If your business is based in Europe or display your content to EU visitors, you need to make users aware of your user cookies and notify them of how you use them …
The Compliance Bar plugin lets you edit the settings for compliance with EU Cookies requirements, including the wording of your notification message and link text in the “EU Cookies” screen …
(EU Cookies Screen: Manage Settings – Image sourced from plugin documentation)
Compliance Bar has a non-intrusive way of notifying your visitors and covering you from non-compliance.
The “Page Templates” tab, lists all of your compliance disclaimers and shortcodes, and lets you modify their content …
The “General Settings” tab, lets you access general information, such as promoting and sharing the plugin and receiving plugin update notifications …
Testimonials From Users
Below are a couple of the testimonials and comments that plugin users have submitted regarding the Compliance Bar plugin:
“1000% Highly Recommend This” Anthony La Rocca – Founder (Hustle Marketing)
“Don’t Risk Your Online Business” Mike Thomas (The Mike From Maine Show)
Below are some additional ways you can use Compliance Bar:
- Display compliance icons on specific pages of your site only.
- Minimizing refund disputes by clearly spelling out the refund terms before customers purchase.
- If you include adult content on your website, you can force visitors to click to confirm that they are of legal age to view your content.
Compliance Bar provides users with a dedicated team to help users. You also have access to full video training.
Additionally, your purchase is backed by a risk-free, thirty day, 200% money-back guarantee. If your copy of Compliance Bar does not work within 30 days of purchase and it cannot be fixed within 48 business hours (Monday to Friday), the plugin developers will refund double the amount of the cost of purchase.
- Single Site Personal License – Can be installed on one domain that you own. Price = $47 (Normally $127)
- Business – Can be installed on 25 domains that you own. Cost = $67.00 (Normally $197).
- Developer Edition – Install the plugin on multiple sites that you own. Install the plugin on all client sites for payment or as part of a paid service. Price = $97.00.
Please Note: The price of this product depends on whether there are any promotions or limited-time specials being offered. The price above was correct at the time this article was written. This may not be the actual price set by the plugin developer when you visit the website and there may be additional upsells or one-time offers after your purchase.
Check the plugin’s website for the latest pricing here: Compliance Bar Plugin
Legal Pages Reviewed By Lawyers – The plugin developers assert on their website that all legal templates have already been reviewed and approved by a leading lawyer. Nonetheless, we highly recommend that you get professional advice from a qualified legal expert in your area to ensure that your site is fully compliant.
For a demo video showing plugin usage, including help documentation and tutorials, FAQs, support helpdesk, contact details and more, visit the Compliance Bar website.
Get This Plugin
Compliance Bar is an easy-to-use, simple and cost-effective solution for WordPress websites and blogs. We recommend downloading and installing this plugin for WordPress users if you want immediate peace of mind and legal protection.
To learn more, check out the plugin here: Compliance Bar Plugin – Compliance Bar Plugin – WordPress Website Compliance Plugin
Note: Once again, please note that we are not lawyers and we offer no legal advice here. You must do your own due diligence and consult a legal expert about the best way of ensuring that your website is compliant with all legal requirements in your country or region.
Disclaimer: WordPress and its related trademarks are registered trademarks of Automattic, Inc. This site is not affiliated with nor sponsored by Automattic, Inc. or the WordPress Open Source project. This site and the products and services offered on this site are not affiliated, associated, sponsored, or endorsed by WordPress, nor have they been tested, reviewed, or certified by WordPress. The owner, contributors and/or advertisers may derive financial benefit from sales of items linked to, reviewed, or advertised on this site.
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