How to Add a Privacy Policy in WordPress

Add a Privacy Policy in WordPress

User privacy, especially when it relates to personal data, has been a hot topic for a while now. Any website or business owner who has their customers’ best interests at heart should be actively looking to ensure transparency, regardless of the type of information they’re collecting.

Creating a dedicated privacy policy is a vital step in that process. It can take a little work to get one off the ground. However, it’s practically essential if you want to legally abide by a number of key laws, not least of which is the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

This post will look at how to add a privacy policy to your WordPress site. Before that, we’ll talk about exactly what a privacy policy is, and what it should contain. Let’s get to work!

What Is a Privacy Policy?

In a nutshell, a privacy policy is a document outlining how you collect, handle, and safeguard your users’ personal data:

What Is a Privacy Policy?

We’ll be the first to admit that, much like the dreaded Terms of Service, privacy policies often go unread. However, they’re still vital for setting in stone how you collect and process data. In fact, they’ve become something of a necessity, now that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has implemented new rules regarding user data and privacy.

Exactly how a privacy policy is set up can vary a bit. However, most focus on mentioning each individual component of your site that collects data, and outlining the following details about them:

  • What data that element collects
  • How the data is processed
  • Where the data is stored

If you’ve never looked into the matter, you may be surprised to discover how much data is automatically collected on your site, even if you aren’t proactively gathering emails or payment information. What elements you’ll need to include in your privacy policy will depend on your individual site, and there are resources that can help you find out what those are.

In summary, practically every website can benefit from having a clear privacy policy in place. If you don’t have one yet, creating it should be high on your list of priorities.

How to Add a Privacy Policy in WordPress Theme

Fortunately, adding a privacy policy to WordPress is much simpler than it has ever been, thanks to a few recent changes to the platform. Let’s take a look at how to get started!

Step 1

While in the past you needed to create a privacy policy from scratch, recent versions of WordPress provide a built-in system for creating this type of policy quickly. To check it out, head to Settings > Privacy in your WordPress dashboard:

Add a Privacy Policy in WordPress Theme

You’ll come to a screen outlining some pertinent requirements, along with a drop-down list of all your site’s pages:How to Add a Privacy Policy to site

If you already have a privacy policy page, you’ll want to select it from this menu and click on Use This Page. If not, simply select Create New Page, and WordPress will do the job for you.

Step 2

Once you’ve selected your new privacy policy page, you’ll be taken to a standard WordPress editor screen. However, it will be pre-populated with privacy-related content that’s divided into a number of sections:

privacy policy for wordpress

You’ll also notice a link near the top of the screen. This resource provides incredibly helpful advice on how to fill out each section, along with whether or not you’ll need to actually display it to visitors:

adding a privacy policy to wordpress site

We’d recommend opening this guide in a new tab, and working through each section on the page one by one. Of course, if you have a legal team well-versed in privacy law on hand, you’ll want to consult it as well.

If you don’t want to use WordPress’ standard policy for whatever reason, there are plenty of other resources available to help you build your own policy. For example, you can:

  • Simply copy and amend an existing privacy policy from a similar website. However, be careful that the privacy policy you copy is legally compliant.
  • Use an online generator to create your privacy policy.
  • Pay for a premium solution. Iubenda is an excellent example, providing a full-featured, comprehensive solution for creating privacy policies, cookie notices, and so on.

Regardless of how you create your privacy policy, you’ll want to publish the page once you’re done setting it up. Then, the final step is to make sure your visitors can find it.

Step 3

At this point, you’re ready to display your new privacy policy page. In our opinion, the best method of doing so is either alongside your cookie banner, or by including a dedicated link in your navigation.

To use the latter method, head to Appearance > Menus in your WordPress dashboard. You can either use an existing menu, or create a new one. Your site’s footer will usually be an ideal location to place the link.

Either way, pick the menu you want to use, and select the checkbox next to your privacy policy page on the left-hand side of the screen. Then, click on Add to Menu:

Create a privacy policy

Once you select Save Menu, you can check out the front end of your site to make sure the link displays correctly (and leads to the right place). Congratulations – you’ve now successfully implemented a privacy policy on your WordPress website!

Get Support for More Common WordPress Questions from WP Engine

Regardless of your take on user privacy, we can all agree that the safety and security of your site’s users is paramount. Here at WP Engine, we ensure that our servers are safe, secure, and super reliable.

What’s more, if you ever need a helping hand (with your privacy policy or otherwise), we’re here for you. Our stellar support team is on hand practically around the clock, to assist you with whatever you need. Plus, you can find lots of additional WordPress tutorials in our Resource Center!

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