Optimize Shopware Cookie Banner for Tracking

by Meike Müller

Our daily business consists mainly of shop support for various online shops. We have noticed that the current version of the cookie banner in Shopware has a strong negative impact on tracking - for example with Google Analytics. To check this, we changed the cookie banner from the Shopware standard to an individual version for one of our customers.

We recorded the change afterwards and it looks like this:

Graphic diagram comparison old and new cookie consent banner

On the left, we have inserted the Cookie Consent in the standard and you can see directly that the tracking breaks in. On the right, we have now inserted our optimized Consent and the numbers go up again.

Before the Cookie Consent banner looks like this:

Graphic banner the old Cookie Consent banner

Through the primary button "Configure" highlighted in red, users are taken directly to the cookie configuration. This deselects options that are required for tracking and negatively affects them for Google Analytics.

After customization, the banner overlays the page and must be heeded:

Graphic banner the new Cookie Consent banner

The improvement is obvious. With the standard version of the banner, attention is drawn to the "Configure" button. With the customized version, an accept all cookies is suggested with the primary button. In addition, the user is required to act. Here, almost everyone clicks on "Accept all".

Note: We cannot guarantee that our customization is legally clean.

It is important to know that the topic of "using cookies in a legally secure way" is legally in flux and the supervisory authorities of the countries are currently dealing with the legal guidelines and these can be changed at any time.

In order to shed some light on the current legal situation, we spoke to lawyer Johannes Meibers, lawyer & specialist lawyer for IT law from Münster, and were allowed to ask him a few questions on the subject.

Attorney at Law Johannes MeibersMr. Meibers, at what point is the user's consent necessary when using cookies?

Attorney Johannes Meibers: "The consent of the user for the use of cookies is generally required when so-called non-essential cookies are used. Cookies are necessary if they are (technically) absolutely necessary for visiting the shop. In this case, one also speaks of essential cookies. However, there is no clear definition of which cookies are necessary and which are not. However, it is safe to assume that cookies that store the following information of a user can be classified as necessary: login status, language selection, cookie consent, shopping cart and form entries. Conversely, cookies that are not absolutely necessary for visiting a shop are not necessary. Typically, these are cookies that are used to measure or analyse visitor flows in a shop. Such cookies are used in particular by third parties or external services that enable the operators of websites and shops to perform analysis functions (Google Analytics, etc.). In particular, if cookies are used to create profiles about the behavior of users beyond a website or shop, they are not necessary cookies."

2. The issue of data protection in e-commerce has been around for a long time and the legal guidelines seem to be getting stricter and stricter. Can you give us a tip on what should always be observed as a matter of principle?

Attorney Johannes Meibers: "As the operator of a shop, you should always continuously inform yourself and observe the developments in data protection. This applies in particular to data protection issues when measuring visitor flows, the use of external services from outside the EU/EEA and newsletter dispatch."

3. we have swapped the standard banner for our clients with a customized banner version that changes the primary "Configure" button to "Accept All ". Is it possible to say here exactly whether the procedure is legally clean or is one in a grey area with it?

Attorney Johannes Meibers: "At the latest since the Federal Court of Justice commented in May 2020 on issues related to cookies and consent, this topic is felt omnipresent. Consent tools / cookie banners are now used across the board. However, these have a massive impact on the quantity and quality of tracking data. It is therefore obvious that shop operators, their agencies and of course external services are increasingly concerned with how to obtain sufficient tracking data despite the use of consent tools / cookie banners. This also includes that the user is preferably led to a consent when entering the shop - as intended by your solution. This is known as "nudging". Regulators have already recognized this to some extent. For example, at the end of November 2020, the supervisory authority in Lower Saxony dealt in detail with the design of consent tools / cookie banners and nudging (to be read here). There, such nudging measures are considered impermissible as soon as the user no longer has any real freedom of choice between consent and rejection of cookies. However, it has not yet been clarified when exactly the limit of what is permissible is exceeded. Until then, in my opinion, one is in a grey area."

Many thanks to Johannes Meibers!

You find the topic exciting and want more information or need help for your website or online shop? Attorney Johannes Meibers runs the website GetLaw onwhich you can have legally secure texts created for websites and shops. On the associated blog there are many interesting articles on legal topics in e-commerce. On the subject of cookies, we recommend this article .

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from 19.02.2021

Hello, my name is Meike. I take care of the EXWE back office and am responsible for our social media channels. All of our articles are meant to make your life easier and help you make decisions. Nevertheless, it can happen that something remains unclear, so: If you have questions about this article you can easily reach me at +49 231 93149827.

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