Privacy policy pages have always been useful for all types of websites, as they convey trust to your site visitors. But during recent years, they have also become a requirement for any website owner.  There are several privacy laws that make privacy policy pages mandatory, pretty much anywhere in the world.


Here are the topics we’re going to tackle in this article:

  • why do you need a privacy policy page
  • what are the most important privacy laws in the world;
  • what information should your privacy policy include;
  • how to create a privacy policy page in WordPress and more.


Do you really need a privacy policy page on your website?

Every website collects data about its visitors in one way or another. Therefore, in most countries, websites are required by law to disclose what data they are collecting and how they’re using that data.


What are the most important privacy policies you should know about?

Online privacy protection has become a must all around the world. Here are four major privacy laws that you should be aware of, depending on location:

  • The GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), which applies to all the states in the European Union;
  • The CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act) in the United States;
  • The CalOPPA (California Online Privacy Protection Act) in the United States;
  • The PIPEDA (Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act) for Canada.

While these laws may seem to affect only the area where they have been implemented, it isn’t quite like that. Your visitors access your site from all over the world, so you have to comply with these privacy laws no matter where you are located.

If you fail to be law-abiding, you risk paying fines from thousands and up to 20 million US dollars, depending on the severity of infringement you commit.


When do you need a privacy policy page?

Even though you might think your type of website doesn’t require a privacy policy page, in most cases, it will. Regardless of the type of website you have, if you collect data on your users, you have to comply with the above-mentioned laws. And if you want a successful website, collecting data is unavoidable.

Here are just a few common examples of how WordPress sites collect data on their visitors:

  • They collect names and emails in comment forms; allowing comments on your website is useful and even recommended in most cases, but when users leave a comment, they are required to provide information such as name or email address;
  • When using contact forms; whether it’s for sending newsletters, special offers, and so on, websites need information such as the user’s email address;
  • They collect data when using Google Analytics; this tool is very useful for monitoring the traffic on your website and most sites use it; however, Google Analytics uses personal data such as IP addresses or cookies;
  • Data is also collected when you use advertising tools such as Google AdSense, which create targeted ads based on behavioral user data.

These are just a few examples of how websites in general (and probably yours, too) collect data on their users. Every time that happens, you have to notify your users about the data your site will collect. This will protect you from any possible legal issues, and of course, help you build more trust with your visitors.


What Should You Include in Your Privacy Policy Page?

Now that we explained why you need a privacy policy page for your WordPress website, we’ll move on to actually creating one. So what do you have to include in your privacy policy?

The first thing to understand is that not all privacy policies are the same. The information in them depends on the website/business you have and the specific data you collect from your users.

But here is what it is usually included in a privacy policy, just to get a general idea:

  • Your name and contact info;
  • What data you’re about to collect from the visitors to your site;
  • Why are you collecting that data: for website optimizing purposes, to customize the content on your site based on user preferences, for direct marketing purposes, and so on;
  • The methods you’ll be using to collect user data, such as sign up, registrations, cookies;
  • It should mention any third-party organizations that will have access to their information, like Google AdSense and others;
  • It should include information on the legal basis for collecting and processing user data;
  • Information on how your visitors can block your cookies and how they can opt-out of third-party advertising sites ;
  • Guidance on how your users can contact you for questions related to your privacy policy;
  • Who can they address their complaints to, regarding your privacy practices;
  • How will your users be informed in case of any changes to your privacy policy;
  • How long will your website store their Personally Identifiable Information (PII);
  • It should specify whether you plan on transferring their PII to other countries.

Generate your Privacy Policy text with online tools

If you don’t have the time or patience to compose the Privacy Policy text yourself, you can use third-party alternatives such as Free Privacy Policy, TermsFeed, or Termageddon, to name just a few. Some of them are free and they allow you to generate the text for your Privacy Policy, Terms & Conditions pages, and more. These online tools meet all the major legal and third-party requirements.

Product nameFree versionAvailable templatesStrengths
Free Privacy PolicyYesPrivacy Policy Generator
Terms and Conditions
Cookies Policy
Return and Refund
Disclaimer
EULA (End-User License Agreement)
Cookie Consent
All generators are completely free to use
TermsFeedYesPrivacy Policy
App Privacy Policy
Terms & Conditions
EULA
Terms of Service
Disclaimer
Cookies Policy
Terms of Use
Return and Refund
They offer free hosting of your Privacy Policy
TermageddonNoPrivacy Policy
Terms and Conditions
Disclaimer
EULA
Automatically updates all your policies for free when the laws change

The way they work is by giving you a questionnaire to answer. You have to provide the name and nature of your website, your country, what kind of data you’ll collect, and other necessary information.

Here’s how questionnaires usually look like:

privacy policy generator questionnaire

And here’s another example:

privacy policy generator questionnaire

After you fill in all the fields, your privacy policy will be generated. They’ll either let you download it to your computer or they’ll send it to you via email. Some will give you an embed code you can add to the page.


Add the generated text to your WordPress Privacy Policy page

The last step is to copy the text and paste it to your WordPress page. Go to your DashboardPages Add New, to create a new page, just like in the image below:

create a new page in WordPress

Title your new page “Privacy Policy” and paste the text, just like in this image:

create Privacy Policy page in WordPress

Click on Publish once you are finished, so the page can go live.


How does Termageddon work?

Unlike Privacy Policy Generator and TermsFeed, which are free to use, Termageddon is a paid third-party tool with more complex features. The software was created by privacy attorneys and it does more than just generate static privacy policy pages.

Their team constantly monitors privacy laws and in case of any changes, they automatically push the updates to all the pages created with their platform. Termageddon is currently available for businesses in the UK, US and Canada.

In order to use Termageddon, you have to register and add a license. Then, you go through a questionnaire just like with other similar tools. After you edit the information, the software will generate an embed code for your privacy policy.

You have to add the code to any of your WordPress pages. For instance, go to the DashboardPages → Add New and create a normal page.

add a new page in wordpress

You title it Privacy Policy and create a new Custom HTML block with the WordPress editor, by clicking on the + sign and typing “Custom HTML” in the search bar.

Here’s how it should look:

create a custom html block in wordpress with the gutenberg editor

You paste the Termageddon code in that block, Publish the page and that’s it.


Create a Privacy Policy page with the built-in WordPress tool

If you don’t want to use online Privacy Policy generators, but you don’t want to waste time composing the entire text yourself either, there is another way. WordPress has a text template that can help you have your Privacy Policy page ready and up in no time.

Starting with WordPress 4.9.6, there is a built-in Privacy Settings tool that you can use directly from the WordPress dashboard. This feature helps you easily create a Privacy Policy page or use an existing page on your website as one.

All you have to do is make sure you have the latest WordPress version, in order to have access to this tool. If you don’t, make sure you update your WordPress.


After that, go to your Dashboard Settings Privacy, just like in the example below:

privacy settings in WordPress dashboard

Here’s what you should see after you click on Privacy:

privacy settings window in WordPress

You can use an existing page on your website to transform it in a Privacy Policy page or click on the Create New Page button. If you opt for the latter, a template Privacy Policy page will open.

It will look like this:

template Privacy Policy page in WordPress

You can use the template text as a guideline and adapt it to your needs. Once you are done editing the text, hit the Publish button, for the page to go live.

Next, it is important to know that this way, your Privacy Policy page will only appear on the login and registration pages on your website. However, this is not enough. The best thing is to create a link to it for all the pages on your website. We’ll show you how to do that later on.


Use a plugin to create your WordPress Privacy Policy page

If you don’t want to use the built-in option offered by WordPress, you can create the page with the help of a plugin. There are plenty to choose from. We’ll give you a few popular ones to consider, but it’s up to you which one you choose.

WP AutoTerms is a commonly used plugin. You might know it as “Auto Terms of Service and Privacy Policy”, which was its previous name. This plugin is free and helps you easily create Privacy Policy, Terms & Conditions and Cookies Policy pages.

It is loaded with features and if you opt for the Premium version, you can access more advanced tools. For instance, you can create a Privacy Policy page with GDPR or CCPA wording.

Once you install the plugin (go to your Dashboard Plugins Add New, search for the plugin, install it and then hit the Activate button), you’ll see it displayed on your left sidebar.

Here’s where you can find it:

WP AutoTerms plugin in WordPress

You just click on Add Legal Pages and start creating your Privacy Policy page, just like in the image below:

simple privacy policy page in WP AutoTerms

Once you input all the information required, you click the Create button on the bottom of the page. The newly created page will open and you have to hit Publish for it to go live.

It will look like this:

publish privacy policy page in wp autoterms

The Privacy Policy page will be displayed at the bottom of your website.


Another popular plugin to consider is WPLegalPages, which is also free.

The plugin lets you easily create Privacy Policy pages, Privacy Notice for CCPA, Terms and Conditions pages and more. If you opt for the Premium version, you get access to over 25 templates of legal pages.

Go to your DashboardPlugins Add New, search for the plugin, install it and then hit the Activate button). After that, you’ll see the plugin on the left sidebar. It will be named Legal Pages.

This is how it looks:

WPLegalPages plugin on WordPress dashboard

Click on Create Page and on the right there are several templates to choose from. Use the Privacy Policy template, edit the text and when you are done, click the Publish button.

There are many other plugins to consider as well, so make sure you check out all the available options before you make a decision.

Plugins that can extend your Privacy Policy page

Another useful thing to know is that a large number of WordPress plugins add their own Privacy Policy text. These are plugins that work with sensitive data and are required to inform their users about their privacy practices and what kind of data they collect.

A few examples are ecommerce plugins, such as Easy Digital Downloads. These plugins need to collect customer information during their checkout process.

Testimonial plugins such as Strong Testimonials are also required to inform their users on the data they collect when they publish the testimonials.

If you use plugins such as these, you can copy their text and paste it to your Privacy Policy page. In order to find it, you go to Settings Privacy and click on the “Check out our guide” link.

This is where you have to go:

settings  privacy option in WordPress

You scroll down to the bottom of the page and that’s where you’ll find the text and its source (the name of the plugin). Click on the Copy this section to clipboard and paste the text to your Privacy Policy page.

Here’s an example:


Add the Privacy Policy page to different parts of your website

Now that we’ve presented you with several methods of creating a Privacy Policy page, it is time to learn how to display the page wherever you want on your website.

The Privacy Policy page isn’t always displayed in the part of the website you want. That very much depends on the theme you are using, because their design is different.

For instance, if you are using the default WordPress themes, the Privacy Policy page created with the built-in WordPress tool, will be displayed on the top or bottom part of your site.

The Twenty Twenty theme displays it on the top, just like in this example:

privacy policy page for twenty twenty theme in WordPress

With the Twenty Nineteen and Twenty Seventeen themes, the Privacy Policy page will be added to the bottom, like in this image:

privacy policy page for twenty nineteen theme in WordPress

It looks like this:

After you create the Privacy Policy page, using whichever method you desire, you can set the page to be displayed on the footer or sidebar of the website, using Widgets.

First, go to the Dashboard AppearanceMenus. Create a Menu, name it whatever you want (its name will only be visible in the back end of your website) and hit the Create Menu button. For instance, we named our menu “Test Menu”, just like in the image below:

create menu in WordPress dashboard

Once your menu is created, go to Pages (the left block next to the “Menu structure one”) and View All. Click on the Privacy Policy page you want to add to the footer. Hit the Add to Menu button and then the Save Menu button.

add privacy policy page to a menu in WordPress

The next step is to go to the Dashboard AppearanceWidgets. Look for the Navigation Menu widget and simply drag it to the Footer section you want. Then, select the menu you created (in our case, the Test Menu) and click on Save.

In the example below, we dragged the Navigation Menu widget to Footer 2.

add navigation menu widget in WordPress to footer

If you did everything correctly, your Privacy Policy page will now appear on the footer of your website, just like in this example:

privacy policy page in the footer of the website

Same goes for the sidebar. You go to Dashboard AppearanceWidgets. Look for Navigation Menu widget, but this time drag it to the sidebar section. Select the menu you created (in this case the Test Menu) and click on Save.

Here is an example:

If you followed the steps properly, the Privacy Policy page will now be displayed on the sidebar of your website.

Here’s how it looks in our case:

privacy policy page example in the sidebar of the website

The Widgets feature of WordPress gives you a lot of freedom, so in the end it is just a matter of taste. Choose the design and theme you want and customize the Privacy Policy page according to your preferences.


Summary

No matter what kind of website you have, whether you are an individual or a business, the Privacy Policy page is a must. It can save you thousands or even millions of dollars in fines and it will help you build a good reputation among your website visitors.

In this article we presented you with several methods that help you create a Privacy Policy in no time:

  • online tools that are in many cases free and easy to use; they work by giving a questionnaire and generate the page based on your answers
  • dedicated plugins that need to be installed on your WordPress site and come with templates that help you easily create a Privacy Policy page and add it to your site
  • the built-in Privacy feature that comes with your WordPress; the feature allows you to create a page from scratch or use a page on your website to transform it in your Privacy Policy page

Collecting data is in most cases necessary and inevitable, if you want traffic on your website and to be able to communicate with your users.

So get started on that Privacy Policy page today, for both legal and business reasons.