With the rapid growth of technology and social media, several business owners have attempted to switch to the online market for success. Online marketing is a strong form of business with many individuals who have huge gains in this field. This is because of the vast number of people who use social media and other online platforms.
With the popularity of online marketing, some people try to join this kind of business without having the proper legal knowledge. However, doing that can lead to facing legal problems that can harm your business. This article will discuss five legal issues that online marketers can face.
1. Terms and Conditions
One of the many things online businesses should be wary of when starting fresh is their terms and conditions. Having an online market means that you require a defined compilation of terms and conditions for whatever product or service you offer. When selling your products and services online, you must present your customers with a click-wrap agreement presenting your terms and conditions.
The terms and conditions of your business must cover the following aspects:
- Payment schedules and fees
- Restraint of trade with other organizations
- The scope of what your business provides
- Deliverables and timelines
- Information Confidentiality
- Legal responsibility limitations
- Dispute resolution process
2. Data Privacy
To successfully provide their products and services, online businesses usually require information on the online user’s interests, browsing details, and other personal information. The internet collects these through cookies and other technological tracking softwares that are integrated into the website or app. This can be a concern for users as they know the value of their personal information.
Certain laws are related to data privacy, which helps protect online users from businesses that take their data without consent. Users should have control over what data and information they give out and have access to delete or fix the data they provide.
One example of a law related to data privacy is the General Data Protection Regulation (GPDR) implemented in the EU in 2018. This law requires online markets to get consent from users before collecting any personal data and information. If a business collects data without the individual’s knowledge, they can be penalized to at least 2% of their global annual turnover or 10 million euros.
With this, online marketers should acknowledge laws about data privacy and strictly follow them. Below are ways to comply with data privacy:
- Make a policy for your business that shows the users how you will use their data
- Obtain consent before collecting personal information
- Only collect data that is required for your services
3. Competition Regulations
Trade promotion is where competition occurs to help advertise a company’s services and products. Trade promotions for clients require permits before doing so, depending on the state and territory in which the competition is being run. Aside from that, established trade promotion terms and regulations ensure that online businesses comply.
Below are what the trade promotion terms and conditions aim to define:
- Identifying who can enter the competition
- Details on notifying the winner
- The necessities for entry
- Timeline of the competition
- Identifying the promoter
- Details of the reward
4. Intellectual Property
Another legal issue online marketers are prone to deal with is intellectual property. Online businesses must be cautious about the type of content they use and obtain from the internet. It is required to obtain the permission and license of the content creators before you can use them for your digital business.
The intellectual property of various content creators varies from music, art, pictures, illustrations, graphic designs, and other types of material. These contents help promote a business, but it is important to have the permission and license of the creator.
A form of intellectual property rights is copyright infringement, which happens when a party creates a copy of licensed material without permission from the copyright owner. This also occurs when the material is distributed without the copyright owner’s knowledge. It is illegal to use copyrighted materials without the proper license and permission from the owner.
Advertising is an integral aspect of digital marketing because this is how businesses spread their products and services to succeed. In this business aspect, there are still legal issues that can happen, such as where online marketers should know where they can advertise their products and services. Rules and regulations are still necessary before a business can promote its products.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) makes businesses follow its rules, such as disclosing their material connections to the products and services they promote. Besides that, the FTC also has other regulations like their Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, which tells companies to collect children’s information only when their parental consent is present.
Online marketing is great for entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners to start and sell their unique products and services. With this avenue of business, new digital markets must know and follow certain laws and regulations in online businesses. Law agencies like JustLegal help their clients learn more about legal information that can help their businesses.