use the GDPR for a better customer experience

All of our digital platforms have been GDPR compliant since its introduction. You can not visit a site without the appearance of a pop-up with new regulations. You can just click and accept. Now, to what extent is the user still central? Are we really giving the GDPR sufficient attention? Martin Groen, User Experience Consultant, shares how you can improve on the consumers sense of control GDPR aims for.


think in terms of the GDPR

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was introduced to give users more control over their personal data. The user determines who has access to their data and how it can be used. Moreover, they now have the right to be forgotten.

That took a lot of getting used to for the marketeers. You naturally support the introduction of the GDPR, but you also want to know exactly who your customer is and what they do. We want to improve their online experience using this data. If you give the user more control, you lose control yourself. They might choose not to commit to your brand. 

2 most commonly made mistakes with GDPR

We see organizations struggling with these divisions. They either see the GDPR as a nothing more than necessary administration or they are afraid to lose control. Whatever the reason, we see two persistent online scenarios that can backfire.


  • Organisations concealing information about their user's rights
  • Organisations influencing users

hiding information

The GDPR demands that organisations are transparent about the use and storage of personal information. As a consumer, you have a range of rights, such as requesting information, adjusting your available data, withdrawing or adjusting consent and being forgotten.


Exercising these rights is just not that easy. If you visit a website as a consumer, you often have to visit the privacy page in the footer. Then you can scroll through pages with 'small print' and then click on 'more information' or 'change preferences'.

In short: businesses leave consumers searching. It’s not very transparent. You make it difficult for the user to take action. Moreover, you give the user the feeling that you are insincere.

Many companies still expect the consumer to search for information.

Martin Groen

influencing users

According to the regulations, you can not compel users to consent to the placing of cookies or to the use of data for marketing purposes.

Yet we see organizations still attempt to direct the user at the moment of consent. When giving permission for cookies, they use a striking green 'AGREE' button and a light grey button with 'more information'. It gives the impression that the user can only visit the site if they agree to accept all cookies.

4 tips for a better customer experience

It doesn’t have to be this way, says Martin. If you really dare to think from the GDPR perspective, then you can use the GDPR to improve the user experience for your customer Follow these simple tips to help you to increase the confidence of the user.

  • Speak about right, not about requests
    You do not just request that the user accept a cookie. Your user has the right to know what you are going to do with the data. It’s just a matter of thinking differently. You can demonstrate to the user that you think like them through your web copy.

  • Place the button at the top
    Do not place the button to manage and exercise rights at the bottom of the privacy statements page. Place the button at the top. This means the user can quickly pass on a change, request data or report that they would like to be forgotten.

  • Give users a choice
    Allow users to choose between 'agree' and 'adjust settings'. Do not direct the user in one direction, make the buttons of equal colour and size.

  • Be clear
    Communicate in clear language and choose a readable font. Do not use light grey or small print to convey the message. Your user is entitled to make a choice, so make it as clear as possible.

Taking consideration of the GDPR can help you to increase your customer levels of trust.

more control, better visitor relationship

Few companies are using the GDPR to improve the customer experience. There are opportunities here. Give the user more control and your relationship with the user will be better. You are more sincere and transparent. This gives your users a good feeling. This means that they are more likely to exchange their data for better service.