If you want to send emails to your existing customers or your potential customers, you need to know the law regarding this. There are 2 laws that you need to be aware of and they are CAN-SPAM and GDPR. CAN-SPAM is the American legislation that governs emails in particular while GDPR is the data protection regulation which has been brought in by the European Union.
What To Know About CAN-SPAM
As CAN-SPAM is the one that only regulates emails, you need to be aware of this. The CAN-SPAM Act bill was signed into law in the United States in 2003 and was updated on 2008. This was done to stop the onslaught of spam that was landing in everyone’s email inbox.
The law focuses primarily on transparency and covers all commercial emails which are sent to people within the US or from US-based companies. If you are not based in the US, but send emails to US-based customers or use a US-based email service, you will need to adhere to CAN-SPAM. To ensure that you are adhering to the law, you need to consider a few things.
You will need to tell your readers where the email is coming from and cannot cloak your sending email. You will also have to be honest in your subject line. This means that you cannot tell someone that they have won something in the subject line of an email promoting your new product line. You also have to provide a physical address in your email to show that you have a credible business.
What To Know About GDPR
When GDPR came into effect, a lot of people rushed to ensure that their disclaimers and cookie practices were in line with this. However, there is more to GDPR than disclaimers and it will impact the sending of emails from your business. The primary impact point will be the way that people sign up for your emails.
To be in line with GDPR, the customer will actively need to confirm their consent to receiving emails. This could include a clear opt-in or ticking an unchecked opt-in box. Pre-checked boxes that use inaction as a form of consent will not be valid under GDPR and will cause a breach of this law.
Under GDPR, you will also need to keep your consent requests separate to your terms and conditions. In the past, consent for marketing emails was often hidden in the terms and conditions which most people do not take the time to read. The law also states that you need to make it easy for people to withdraw their consent and stop receiving the emails.
It is important to note that GDPR affects any emails that you will be sending to citizens of the European Union. If you do not have any communication with people in the EU, GDPR will not actually affect you. You can also block your website to people in this geographic location if you are not yet ready to comply with GDPR.