Working with international websites
In cases when companies target international audiences, the setup of the CMP can become complex. On this page we try to outline some of the challenges and how to deal with them.
For most international clients, websites are build in multiple languages and/or for multiple countries. This means the same website / same content will be available in multiple versions. Usually this is achieved by one of the following ways:
- Use of specific domains (e.g. website.de, website.fr, website.com, website.be, ...)
- Use of specific subdomains (e.g. de.website.com, fr.website.com, be.website.com, ...)
- Use of specific paths (e.g. www.website.com/de/, www.website.com/fr/, www.website.com/be/, ...)
One CMP or many CMPs?
In most cases when dealing with multiple countries or languages the first question is always whether
one CMP to be used on all websites/countries/languages
- many CMPs to be used, a different CMP per website/country/language
Both ways have advantages and disadvantages: One CMP is easier to install, configure and maintain (less effort), but does not offer many possibilities to distinguish between the websites or allow differences between countries/languages. Using many CMPs causes a higher effort in installation, configuration and maintenance, especially when changes need to be done multiple times, but offers more flexibility in configuration.
From a technical perspective, both ways can achieve more or less same (e.g. cross domain consent), but only when separating CMPs per website or country different vendor lists, purposes or other settings can be used.
In most cases the use of the same CMP across multiple websites/countries/languages is the prefered way.
When using one CMP for all countries/languages/websites various problems can occur:
- Different legal requirements in different countries
- Different design requirements in different countries
- Vendorlist, Cookielist, Purposlist or CMP settings may vary between different countries
- Website language and CMP language do not match
- Text/translations may vary between different countries (e.g. Portugese Language vs. Brazilian Portugese)
- Cross domain consent may be needed if visitors switch between domains/subdomain
- Different URLs for Imprint, privacy notice or T&C may be used in different countries
Different legal requirements in different countries
By default, the regulation is applied based on the location of the visitor. A typical example is that a visitor from Europe would see a GDPR-text on the consent layer, while a visitor from California would see a CCPA-text. In most cases, this logic does not need to be changed: Clients would simply assess, which regulations apply to them where and would enable the corresponding regulations in the consentmanager CMP settings.
In a few cases, it may be wanted, that the regulation is not applied based on the location of the visitor but based on the company that owns the website. For international company groups, there can be cases when multiple websites belong to different subsidaries of the group and therefore different regulations may apply. If different regulations shall apply based on the current website, you can use the following client-side configuration variable:
window.cmp_regulationkey = "GDPR";
Different design requirements in different countries
By default, the CMP will show the selected design(s) to visitors. In some cases it can be wanted to use a different design in certain countries. A typical example is the "Continue without accepting" button that is often seen in consent banners in France.
window.cmp_params = "&usedesign=1234";
Vendorlist, Cookielist, Purposlist or CMP settings may vary between different countries
If different websites/countries/languages shall use different vendor lists or purpose lists, this can only be achieved by separating these websites/countries/languages into different CMPs. A CMP will always have one fixed vendor list and one fixed purpose list. The lists cannot be changed/updated via client-side configuration variables or similar.
Website language and CMP language do not match
By default, the CMP will select the language based on the browser settings of the visitor. If the browser indicates that the prefered language of the visitor is German (and German is available via the CMP settings) then CMP will display texts in this language - although the website language is English. This can be changed to use the page language instead.
In order to align the displayed language of the CMP to the language of the website, you can use the following client-side configuration variable:
window.cmp_setlang = "FR";
Text/translations may vary between different countries (e.g. Portugese Language vs. Brazilian Portugese)
When dealing with multiple languages or countries, the used texts may be different based on to which language or country the text applies. Three scenarios are possible:
Texts are used based on the location of the visitor
In order to display a text based on the location of the visitor, please create multiple designs and adjust the texts for each design. Then apply targetings to the designs to only be used in the different countries.
Texts are used based on the language of the visitors browser
By default, the CMP will show the text based on the visitors browser language. The system allows to create new custom languages including locales in order to show different texts based on the visitors preferences. This way a visitor with ES (Spanish) or PT (Portugese) can see a different text than a visitor that prefers ES-MX (Mexican Spanish) or PT-BR (Brasilien Portugese).
Texts are used based on the language of the website
In order to display a text in the same language as the website, the client-side configuration variable (e.g.
window.cmp_setlang = "FR";see paragraph above) can be used.
Cross domain consent may be needed if visitors switch between domains/subdomain
If different domains or subdomains are used in order to distinguish between countries or languages, cross domain consent may be needed/wanted in order to avoid asking the same visitor twice when switching from one website to another.
Cross domain consent can be achieved by setting the consent scope (Menu > Legal settings > Consent Scope) of the CMP to CMP-specific or Account-specific.
Different URLs for Imprint, privacy notice or T&C may be used in different countries
Especially with multinational companies, different URLs for imprint, privacy notice or terms&conditions may be used depending on the country/website. By default the CMP only allows to differentiate these URLs based on language. In cases when multiple websites share the same language (e.g. Spanish is used in many country in South America) but different URLs shall be used, this can be achieved via:
Set URLs using client-side configuration variables
The client-side configuration variables
window.cmp_tacurlcan be used in order to override the default language-based URLs.
Using custom languages to set different URLs
Custom languages including a country-specific local can be created. Once created, the privacy notice/imprint/T&C URLs can be set also for the new custom language. Client-side configuration variables (
window.cmp_setlang = "FR";) can be used in order to signal to the CMP, which language shall be used on which website.