A lot has changed in the way that companies handle their customers’ data. It’s now critical for businesses to take all the necessary precautions and put systems in place that help protect their data. It’s not just the company’s data that’s vulnerable but customers’ data too.
As most businesses nowadays have a website, it’s beneficial to ensure your website is compliant with all the current government rules and regulations that are in place in 2022. Failure to do so could put the business at risk in more ways than one.
In this article, we’ll explain what it means to be website compliant and the top tips to help make it so. There are also many advantages that come from protecting your customers’ data too.
What does it mean to be Website Compliant?
Website compliance is the state of observing and following all laws and regulations that relate to the accessibility of your website. With 68% of business leaders feeling the rise in cybersecurity risks, it’s important that you’re doing your best to make your website compliant.
It’s something that’s better to do sooner rather than later, especially as in 2022 there are more remote workers. Human error is also a major influence to cyber attacks and falling victims to scams.
When you’re taking customer data and storing it within your virtual servers, it’s important for the sake of your business, to adhere to any rules. Not just for the company’s reputation and stability but to avoid incurring fines.
Top 3 Tips to Help make Your Website Compliant with Government Rules and Regulations in 2023
As the online landscape is constantly changing, it’s necessary to keep an eye on any legal rules and regulations that come from the government and other organizations. By focusing a lot of attention on your website’s compliance, it will certainly pay off for you in many ways.
With a staggering 98% of the world’s top one million websites not offering full compliance, the need for it is apparent. So why be part of the majority when you can benefit from being one of the few? Here are three top tips to start your journey to full website compliance in 2022.
1) Be vigilant with how you store your customer data:
Customer data is often stored in the cloud because it’s an unlimited storage space that often enough, your work servers cannot accommodate without upgrades. These upgrades can be costly but just like your servers, the cloud is vulnerable to cyber crime.
It’s commonplace for many cloud users to encounter security threats and so it’s good to invest a lot of resources and budget into keeping your data under lock and key. Some helpful tips for storing data in the cloud safely can be done mainly through strong passwords and two-factor authentication where possible.
Most sites that hold financial and confidential data will have this process in place. Examples like your online banking and email, should have this two-factor authentication in place.
Two-factor authentication is great for adding an extra layer of security, as well as using password software for those staff who tend to use the same passwords for every software or system you use. It’s also worth turning on account alerts so that you can be alerted by any suspicious logins or attempted logins.
It’s good to routinely audit your shared files and folders to check for any access that’s no longer required. This can be from previous employees who have now left to those you’ve worked with through outsourcing. By reducing the number of individuals with access, the more secure it will be.
Training your staff on how to be more vigilant when it comes to cyber attacks is also useful to do and many businesses are finding the benefit that comes from investing in training courses and security guidance for employees of all backgrounds.
2) Have a checklist of accessibility updates:
Accessibility is useful for your website because it helps all of the traffic coming to your site, to navigate it easily. Providing a good user experience essential to them coming back again and again as regular customers.
There are plenty of updates and changes you can make to improve accessibility on your site. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
- Use headings in the right manner to help structure content.
- Be wary of your color choices for those with visual impairments.
- Design forms for accessibility like text to speech.
- Include alt text for images.
- Provide alternative displays (larger fonts).
- Check web page loading speeds.
It’s often the small changes that can make the biggest difference in the experience that your customers have. In 2022, inclusivity is important and so effort needs to be made to make your site more accessible. This checklist isn’t exhaustive and as mentioned above, requirements of compliance for your website might change as the digital world progresses.
3) Be clear with the terms and conditions on how you use data:
The terms and conditions you share with your customers are critical to check over so that they fully understand what they’re agreeing to. By handing over their data, the terms and conditions you’ve created should explain what you do with their information.
Osana’s guide to personal data is a good starting point when it comes to drafting up your company’s terms and conditions in relation to data usage. Regardless of the type of website you have, you’ll need to have a small print. This protects not only the customer but also the business when it comes to issues relating to liability, law and jurisdiction.
The conditions need to be accepted by the user, so be accurate in what you include in order to provide the best experience for your customers. How you word and phrase certain points will also need to be written to cater to your customer’s demographic.
The benefits of protecting your customers data and being accessible
Protecting your customer’s data and giving your customers a better experience on your site is definitely needed. There are many benefits for looking after your customer data as well as providing a more accessible site whether it’s their first time on there or they’re regulars to your business.
– It makes your business more inclusive to everyone
We don’t really understand what it’s like to be excluded from something until it happens to us personally. When it does, it can feel awful, so why treat your customers with that same approach? Not every customer who comes onto your site is going to be able to navigate it the same way as others.
Showing inclusivity to not only your existing customers but any potential leads that come onto your site can be good for business and the overall experience they have. When first impressions count, a website that’s compliant to government rules is handy for your company to do.
– Builds trust with your customers
With so much competition for your business to go up against, trust is something that you want to help build from the get go. Being seen to prioritize your customers needs and safety is going to go a long way for your client relationships.
Honesty and transparency is essential to retain your customers. Without it, you’ll likely see a lack of longevity in loyal customers. Nurturing your leads and building that trust in customers will do wonders for your business success.
– Prevents any legal trouble
As a business, there’s a lot more pressure to do everything by the book and to not cut corners when it comes to handling customer data and providing an experience. With that in mind, it’s important to get any legal assistance when it comes to adhering to the government rules.
You may want to use what legal help you have internally, or otherwise outsource it to an agency or firm that can assist you. The fewer legal issues you have, the better. It pays to be proactive in your efforts to stay out of trouble.
– Promotion of brand identity
Brand image is everything nowadays, especially when it comes to your online presence. With little attention spent on your brand’s identity, it can be an uphill struggle to build your company’s web presence.
By showing your efforts in accessibility and website compliance, you contribute positively to brand identity. It’s even better if your competition isn’t making the relevant steps towards better accessibility or compliance. It’s going to put you in a better light and that’s important to do so where you can.
There are further benefits that come from doing your part to protect customer data and to provide more accessible features via your website. The safety and protection this provides to your customers and your own company can be priceless in comparison to leaving yourself vulnerable to attacks.
Make your website compliant for 2023
The past year has seen a lot of change within the world. As a modern business or company in 2022, website compliance is one that many should be implementing but aren’t doing so. If there’s anything to add to the goals for this year, then it’s worthwhile adding website compliance to that list.