5 Website Policies You May Need

Website policies and legal stuff – not to fun or exciting to think about, yet it is really important to keep your website legal. Here are 5 website policies that your site may need:

1. Privacy Policy – Tell people what you will and will not do with their information and how you protect their information once it is submitted to you. This is required if you use Google’s AdSense on your site.

2. Risk disclosure policy – If your site involves selling services that involve risk, you will likely need a risk disclosure policy. Financial sites certainly need a risk disclosure policy.

3. Income or Earnings disclosure policy – Selling products or information to help others make money? You want to let your clients know that you are not guaranteeing any particular level of earnings or income. This may seem dumb to you, but trust me, you want to have this policy in place.

4. Affiliate disclosure policy - If you are compensated as an affiliate or receive anything of substantial value from outside sources that you review or recommend on your site, the Federal Trade Commission requires that you disclose this as a “material relationship.” Basically if you are collecting commission checks or schwag, let your people know, or risk the wrath of the FTC.

5. Comment Policy -For those who permit comments on their sites, you may want to include a policy that covers how you will handle comments. Are the moderated? Do you delete or edit comments? These is a real issue about who actually owns comments, so you may want to lay claim to the comments. That way they are definitely within your control.

Most of the time we don’t think about about some of these “back-end” website policies, but this is another instance where you should be safe rather than sorry. I did a presentation on keeping your site legal recently. The Federal Trade Commission rules changes several years ago and the penalties for violation are high. You want to keep your website policies up-to-date.

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