Can something as minor as the copyright date displayed in the footer of your website be harming the performance of your site?
We’re now well into 2021, yet we continue to see 2020 (or older!) copyright dates displayed.
Your website copyright date is easy to overlook; hidden away as it is in the footer.
Even big brands forget to update their website copyright date each year.
Asserting your rights
Expressing your rights to website content is fundamental to asserting your intellectual property rights.
Avoiding theft of content on the Internet is near impossible, but challenging those who rip off the copy or other material from your website is easier with an explicit copyright statement.
Even if the copyright date displayed on your website is old, you have the same legal rights.
However, an out-of-date year displayed in your website footer could be hurting visitor trust.
Do you care?
When we visit websites with out of date copyright years, we instinctively question whether a) the business cares enough to keep their website updated and b) if they have kept the site relevant with fresh content since the start of the New Year.
We know that adding fresh content to websites is critical for maintaining search engine rankings and attracting repeat visits from prospective customers.
Failure to add a new blog post in at least the past couple of weeks will harm your website’s engagement and conversion rates.
Here at Bear Content, we might be exceptional in caring consciously about website copyright dates. But it’s the small details like this that subconsciously influence website visitors.
System 1 thinking
How our brains make decisions is complex.
In his bestselling book Thinking, Fast and Slow, Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman explained our two modes of thought.
System 1 thinking is fast, instinctive and emotional. When we visit a website, it’s this System 1 thinking that drives our first impressions of the brand or business.
System 2 thinking, however, is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. When our prospective customers take the time to consume our content and learn about our brand, it’s this System 2 thinking they engage.
I see the copyright date on a website a little like the infamous brown M&Ms rider, added by Van Halen to each contract for a concert venue.
Why brown M&Ms? The genius thinking supporting a requirement to remove all of the brown M&Ms from a bowl of the candy was a simple test to see if all of the other detailed requirements for the tour had been followed.
If the team arrived at the venue and discovered a single brown M&M in the candy bowl, they knew they needed to review each aspect of their venue requirements, including safety measures.
When you’re the architect of the biggest rock concert ever seen – or responsible for the website that serves as your shop window to the world – these little details matter.
Is your website copyright date current?Why your website copyright date is the brown M&Ms test for your site Click To Tweet