This is a complete documentation of the GDPR Cookie Consent Plugin (free version) to help you set up the plugin on your WordPress website. It will be the right guide for you in the journey to compliance with the GDPR and CCPA regulations.
GDPR Cookie Consent Plugin- Overview
The GDPR Cookie Consent Plugin helps you comply with the GDPR (General data protection regulation)/EU Cookie law by making it easy to follow their requirements on your website. In addition to GDPR, you can also ensure compliance with the CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act) or both using the plugin.
You can install the plugin either from the WordPress plugin directory or as a zip downloaded from the WordPress.org website. You can learn more about the installation procedure by reading the article How to Install a Free Plugin from WordPress.
Getting Started with the Plugin
You can navigate to the plugin settings page from your WordPress admin dashboard.
WordPress dashboard > GDPR Cookie Consent tab,
You can also open the plugin from the ‘Installed Plugins‘ page of your WordPress admin.
Cookie law settings
On opening the cookie law settings page you will be able to find 5 different tabs. General, Customise Cookie Bar, Customise Buttons, Advanced, and Help Guide.
Here is what each of these tabs does.
Enable cookie law – You can either keep it on or off. When you keep it on your website’s front end will be displayed a cookie banner, as shown in the below screenshot.
The appearance of the cookie banner is by default. You can change it later.
Select the type of law – Since the plugin assists in the compliance of both GDPR and CCPA laws, you can either choose one of them or choose both. The rest of the settings such as customization of buttons, notice, themes, etc., will be aligned as per your choice. It is selected as ‘GDPR’ by default.
Auto-hide (Accept) cookie bar after delay? – Here you can configure if you wish to accept or hide the cookie bar when the user response is delayed. It is given ‘No’ by default.
Auto-hide cookie bar if the user scrolls (Accept on scroll)? – Here you can configure what happens when a user scrolls. You can either set it as accept on scroll by selecting ‘Yes’ or keep it in the default mode.
Note: As per the latest GDPR policies it is required to take an explicit consent for the cookies. Use this option with discretion especially if you serve EU
The General tab is further divided into an ‘Other’ tab.
Here you can configure if you want to reload your website on actions such as Scroll accept, Accept, and Reject. All three are given ‘No’ by default.
Once finished with all the General settings, you can click the Update Settings button.
Customise Cookie Bar
Here you can customise the Cookie Bar to blend with the color and style of your website. It is subdivided into cookie bar and show again tab.
Message Heading – Here you can add a heading for the cookie bar message or leave it empty if you don’t need one.
Message – Here you can add the message that need to be shown on the cookie bar. You can use shortcodes within the message.
Cookie bar colour – You can select a color for the cookie bar. White is chosen by default.
Text colour – Here you can choose a text colour for all the text inside cookie bar. Black is chosen by default.
Font – You can choose the right font from the drop-down. The theme font is chosen by default.
Show cookie bar as – Here you can configure how you want to show the cookie bar to your website visitors. You can choose from the options Banner, Popup, and Widget. Footer is selected by default.
Position – You can choose header or footer as the position for the cookie bar on your website. Footer is selcted by default.
On load – Choose whether you wish to keep it animate or sticky on load.
On hide – Choose whether you wish to keep it animate or sticky on hide.
Finally, click the Update settings button to save the changes.
Show again Tab
Here you can configure the show again tab for the cookie bar on your website. Show again tab helps your users to revoke their consent, which is a requirement for the GDPR compliance.
Use Show Again Tab? – You can select either ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. Yes is selected by default.
Tab Postion – Choose a position to display the tab. Right is chosen by default.
From Left Margin – Here you can configure the distance of the tab from the left margin. You can either configure a percentage or pixel value to it. 100px is chosen by default.
Show More Text – Here you can add the text for the show again tab.
Click Update settings.
The cookie bar contains buttons such as Accept, Reject, Settings, and Read More link. This section is for customizing each of them.
You can customise the button to either close the cookie bar or follow a link. You can also customise its colors and styles. These buttons are available as shortcode as well which you can easily add to the cookie bar.
Text – If you want the button text to say anything other than Accept, you can add it here. Accept is give as default.
Text colour – Choose a text colour for the button. White is the default test color.
Show as – If you want to show the button as a link, you can choose Link here. Button is chosen by default.
Background colour – Choose a background colour for the button. Green is the default colour for background.
Action – You can choose from two actions, close header, and open URL. Close header is chosen by default.
Size – You are provided with four size options for the button (Extra large, Large, Medium, Small). Choose one from the dropdown. Medium is the default size.
Click Update Settings.
It also comes with similar settings as the Accept button.
Text – Add text for the button.
Text Colour – Choose a text color for the button.
Show as – Button or Link.
Background colour – Choose a background color.
Action – Choose how the button or link acts on clicking it. Close header and open URL are two options. Close header is chosen by default.
Size – Choose an appropriate size from the dropdown for the button.
Click Update Settings.
The settings button is also used in the cookie bar to allow further control over cookies to users. Here are the possible customisations for the cookie settings button.
Text – Here, you can either keep the default text ‘Cookie settings’ or add any other text.
Text color – Choose a text color. The default text color is black.
Show as – Choose whether you want to show it as a button or link.
Size – Choose the right size for the button from the given options. ‘Medium’ is chosen by default.
Once the configurations are done click the Update Settings button.
Read More Link
The following customisations are possible for this button.
Text – Add text for the button/Link. Read More is given by default.
Text color – Choose a text color. Black is chosen by default.
Show as – You can show it as either button or link.
URL or Page? – Choose whether you want to connect the Read More Link to a page on your website or a URL. URL is chosen by default.
URL – You can add the URL in the box.
Minimize Cookie Bar in this Page/URL? – Select either ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to minimize cookie bar based on your above choice.
Open in new window?- Choose if you want to open the link or page in a new window.
Size – Choose a size for the button from the options. ‘Medium’ is chosen by default.
Click Update Settings.
Reset all values – Sometimes themes apply settings that clash with that of plugins. Should that happen you can adjust the settings by clicking the button ‘Delete settings and reset’. This will reset all values to the default.
Click Update Settings to save the settings.
Within the Help Guide, you can find a number of shortcodes that you can add to the message field of the Cookie Bar. This way you can add nicely formatted buttons and/or links into the cookie bar, without having to add any HTML.
The Help links page contains a link to the documentation and support desk.
The cookie list allows you to manage and add new cookies manually to your website along with its name, type, duration, sensitivity, Id, and description.
To add a new cookie, click the Add New button.
Here you can add a title for the cookie, give a description, assign cookie ID, choose a cookie type from persistent, session, and third-party cookies.
Choose a cookie duration after which the cookie gets deleted and add cookie sensitivity (necessary, non-necessary).
Once you have completed it, Publish the cookie by clicking the Publish button.
By un-selecting the template from the left side you can also remove the unwanted content from the policy page. You also have the option to add new content to it.
The plugin lets you add cookies into two categories; necessary and non-necessary. This allows you to seek explicit consent from your users on rendering cookies categorized as non-necessary.
Here you can either enable or disable non-necessary cookies from appearing on the cookie settings pop-up. You can also add a description and tilte for the non-necessary cookies, enter the script (to be added to the page HEAD section if the above settings are enabled and the user has given consent.), and another script (to be added right after the BODY section).
You can click the Update Settings button to save the changes.
Necessary cookies cannot be disabled. It will always be in the enabled mode. You can add a title and description to be displayed on the cookie settings popup for the necessary cookies.
Here you can add a privacy overview title and description and click the Save changes button.
This section allows you to manage automatic script blocking for your website. The following three plugins are currently supported for auto-blocking.
- Official Facebook Pixel
- Smash Balloon Instagram Feed
- Smash Balloon Twitter Feed
Plugins marked inactive are either not installed or activated on your website. Enabled plugins will be blocked by default on the front-end of your website prior to obtaining user consent and rendered respectively based on consent.
If you wish to disable automatic script blocking for any of these plugins, you can do so by simply toggling the button against the respective plugin.
Note: Advanced script rendering and script blocking should be enabled to block the cookies automatically. For new users, it would be enabled by default. But existing users will have to manually enable it.
Enabling auto-script blocking (for existing users)
If you are an existing user of the plugin the advanced script rendering and script blocking will be in disabled mode. You will have to enable them by clicking on the link Enable.
The first link for advanced script rendering will redirect you to the Advanced tab in the Cookie law settings window.
Here you can enable the Advanced script rendering by clicking the toggle button beside it.
Click Update Settings to save the changes.