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Your website is crucial to your business – have you thought about how it could hurt you?

by Amy Ross on August 07, 2018 in FTC, Compliance, website archiving

It being Black Friday, I thought why not write about retail…

Seems like everyday now, we hear about another big retailer declaring bankruptcy or closing down a large percentage of their brick and mortar locations, transferring that capital to the online strategy. Some are calling it the retail apocalypse…Radio Shack, Payless Shoes, Kmart, Michael Kors. JC Penney…and so many more – in 2017 alone, more than 6000 stores have been closed.

In order to survive, businesses are needing to get their digital strategy in place. I’ve seen published studies that state anywhere from 51%-67% of Americans now prefer to shop online. I did all of my Christmas shopping online last year…well, I still bought my kids stocking stuffers in a store…but that’s all, and it will be the same thing this year. (And I was one of the, “I’ll never shop online type…”)

But online stores are is just so convenient, for both buyers and sellers. Companies are using Facebook to sell direct to consumers and Google has made it so the advertisers don’t need to look for us…the ads will find us, based on our online activity. It’s kind of freaky, actually.

food-labels

Your website is like a shelf – displaying all of your products; what is in them, what they do, why they are better than the competition and how much they cost.

Your website is CRUCIAL to your business survival – but it could potentially cost you millions in lawsuits if a consumer believes they have been misled or falsely advertised to.

The product info (labeling) that is displayed on your website, the blogs that you write promoting your services and all of the ads you display – are all subject to all of the same regulations that the FTC requires of your physical packaging and ads. The FTC monitors your website for:

- Health claims aka “clinically proven”

- The word “guaranteed”

- False advertising

- Disclaimers

How are you going to prove your company website did not make unsubstantiated health claims or falsely advertised a product, if it’s ever called into question?

Is your back up plan enough?

How will you be able to produce that content in a timely manner?

Be sure you are capturing and archiving your web content – all of it. Make sure you are covered, should anyone ever call your content into question. Know the facts – backups and screenshots are not enough and will not help you court.

FTC Website Compliance-cover

Check out FTC Compliance Checklist we have recently produced. Happy selling…

 

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