Cookie Consent is Annoying! Must I Have It On My Website?

Cookie consent is a constant distraction from our browsing experience, many users seem to hate being asked before they can browse a website, but the law requires it. From online shopping to social media, proper cookie consent has become essential in order to comply with legal requirements and protect users' privacy.

Importance of cookie consent

What are cookies?

Cookies are small text files that are stored on a user's device when they visit a website. These cookies can track user behaviour, preferences, and other information to enhance the user experience.

Cookie consent

Cookie consent is the process by which website visitors are informed about the use of cookies and are given the option to accept them, reject them, or to leave the website without browsing further.

While most websites will give some control over optional cookies, many will incorporate cookies in ways the users are not given the power to 'switch off'. It's not illegal to make cookie acceptance a requirement of browsing a website. The user must still be informed, and must still consent, but the website owner can deny access if that consent is not given. In this situation the user gets to make a choice about trading some of their data, and being exposed to targeted ads, in exchange for having access to the content on the website. The important thing is that users are informed, and get to make an informed choice about cookies, even if that means leaving the website.

Legal requirements for cookie consent

GDPR in the UK

The GDPR requires websites to obtain explicit consent from users before setting cookies on their devices. Websites must clearly inform users about the types of cookies being used, their purpose, and how they can manage their cookie preferences.

GDPR, PECR and Data Protection Act compliance

In addition to GDPR, websites in the UK must also comply with the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations, which sit alongside the Data Protection Act, and govern the collection and use of personal data. Cookie consent is a key aspect of privacy compliance and helps to protect users' personal information as required by law.

Benefits of proper cookie consent

Legal compliance

Proper cookie consent ensures that your website is in compliance with the law, reducing the risk of penalties for non-compliance. By obtaining explicit consent from users, you demonstrate a commitment to protecting their privacy rights. Customers who place a high importance on privacy will appreciate your doing it properly.

User trust

By being transparent about your use of cookies and giving users control over their preferences, you build trust with your audience. Users are more likely to trust websites that respect their privacy and provide clear information about their data practices. By incorporating Cookie consent into your website, you allow users to customize their preferences and avoid unwanted tracking, creating a more personalised and tailored browsing experience.

How to implement proper cookie consent on your website

Cookie consent banner

  • Display a cookie consent banner on your website that informs users about your use of cookies and provides options for managing their preferences.
  • Make sure the banner is clearly visible and easy to understand, with a link to your cookie policy for more information.

Cookie policy

  • Create a comprehensive cookie policy that outlines the types of cookies you use, their purpose, and how users can manage their preferences.
  • Make sure your cookie policy is accessible and easy to understand, and keep it up to date with any changes to your cookie practices.

Cookie consent management tool

  • Consider using a cookie consent management tool to automate the process of obtaining and managing user consent.
  • These tools can help you track user preferences, update your cookie settings, and ensure ongoing compliance with legal requirements.


Proper cookie consent is essential for your website to comply with legal requirements, protect user privacy, and build trust with your audience. By implementing clear and transparent cookie consent practices, you can enhance the user experience and demonstrate a commitment to data privacy. This article is an introduction only, it's not possible to cover all the details of all the regulations here. Make sure to stay informed about the latest legal developments and best practices for cookie consent to ensure that your website remains compliant and user-friendly.


At DigitalArena we want you to succeed online, and this can be achieved in several ways.

  • DIY: You can Do It Yourself, as many small businesses and startups try to do at the beginning while they get going.
  • DWY: We can Do it With You, by providing support, instructions, content writing, templates, in areas your business needs help with, while you carry out the majority of the activity yourself.
  • DFY: Or, we can Do it For You as a full web design service, or maintaining your existing website, on retainer or project by project.

To find out more, please call us on 01530 452276 or email

Let's Get in Touch

Based in the heart of the National Forest, we're able to serve businesses around the country.

We'll call you back...

Or call on: 01530 452276 / 07762 184862

FSB Member
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram