Next up in my look back at the 10 most-read articles of 2011 is Here comes the EU Cookie Monster from last May. Sadly, this one is even more relevant now than it was then, because this potentially disruptive piece of (in my opinion, unnecessary) legislation known as the “EU cookie law” is here. We’re only six months away from it being enforced by legal specialists and the Department Of Making Business Harder For European Companies, who are probably already rubbing their hands together in anticipation of writing lots of expensive letters. The new law, which is already in force, requires website owners to get the explicit consent of visitors to install and run “cookies” …and that almost certainly affects you. I’m sure it’s all been drawn up with the best of intentions to do with privacy online, but if it’s taken to its extreme, the most likely outcome I can see is that companies spend time and money modifying their websites, the public gets really irritated with how difficult it makes the web to use, and the law gets changed back again by popular demand, rendering the whole thing a huge waste of resources. Meanwhile, companies based outside Europe will once again be laughing at us and making the most of the situation.
B2B Marketing Online has been reporting from Google’s high-powered Zeitgeist conference, which has just taken place here in the UK, in The Future is Calling. No less a luminary than Sir Tim Berners Lee declared himself at the event to be excited about ‘mobile’, and it’s something we should all be taking an interest in. But I’d be prepared to bet that most of us are quietly ignoring it.
We shouldn’t be. The statistics suggest that a large – and rapidly increasing – proportion of your prospects and customers now have internet-capable mobile phones. Of course they do: think of the type of people they are, and the jobs they’re in! Even if you remain unconvinced that they’re using them to search for suppliers, I’d argue that a lot of existing customers will be accessing your website for information using such devices. And we’d all agree that the last thing any of us want to do is to antagonise existing customers. But have you even looked at your website in a mobile device, like your customers may well be doing?
Tomorrow I’ll show you what you should be showing.