Everything you need to know about Consent Management Platforms (CMP) 

2 octobre 2023

Organisations often store user data on their websites and apps, usually in the form of cookies. But every organisation has to be transparent about how they handle this data, and let users know if their data is shared with external parties. A Consent Management Platform (CMP) can help with this. We'll tell you all about it in this blog. 

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What is a Consent Management Platform?

A Consent Management Platform (CMP) generates a list of the cookies and other technologies that organisations use, and records website and app user permissions and consents.

The CMP can be regarded as a compliance director for privacy rules on websites and apps. Visitors can see which cookies are collected and decide which data they want to share on the consent banner.

There are a lot of CMP tools available on the market, and not every option is suitable for everyone. We are going to help you separate the wheat from the chaff and recommend three great CMPs.

Our favourite CMPs

The main differences between the CMP tools are in the features and pricing models. These four options are user-friendly and offer organisations like yours interesting features. 

1. Cookiebot

The first CMP (Consent Management Platform) that we often recommend is Cookiebot — officially Cookiebot by Usercentrics. Cookiebot provides a comprehensive CMP with a built-in scanner, automatic generation of cookie statements, and opt-in management. Additionally, Cookiebot offers excellent customer service and technical 

The benefits of Cookiebot 

  • Highly advanced cookie scanner 

  • Comprehensive solutions for development environments 

The disadvantages of Cookiebot 

  • Fewer styling options for the consent banner than other CMPs

usercentrics logo
2. Usercentrics

Usercentrics is the cream of the crop when it comes to CMPs (Consent Management Platforms). Usercentrics offers a comprehensive CMP with all the usual features. In addition, it provides numerous other features such as A/B testing, geolocation rules, app support, extensive reporting, etc. While other solutions primarily focus on compliance, Usercentrics concentrates on opt-in optimization. Lastly, Usercentrics also offers many insights and guidelines about CMPs.

Advantages of Usercentrics:

  • Highly advanced scanner

  • Comprehensive reporting

  • Extensive capabilities for opt-in optimization (A/B testing, etc.)

Disadvantages of Usercentrics:

  • If you are less concerned with opt-in optimization and online marketing, this solution can be costly.

CookieHub Logo
3. CookieHub 

CookieHub is one of the leading CMPs. They’re based in Iceland. In CookieHub you’ll find automatic cookie scans, customisable banners, and a customisable UI, that allows you to collect consent from visitors efficiently and relatively easily. The detailed reports, geolocation, and support in 39 languages is also useful. Finally, the CookieHub consent log provides easy evidence for GDPR compliance. 

The benefits of CookieHub 

  • A simple, reliable solution 

  • Clear and powerful cookie scanner 

  • Exceptional integration with Google Tag Manager 

The disadvantages of CookieHub 

  • The pricing model is based on the number of used sessions, so is more suitable for smaller websites 

  • The free version of CookieHub is not 100% GDPR compliant 

OneTrust Logo Square
4. CookiePro by OneTrust 

CookiePro — official name 'CookiePro by OneTrust' —  is  a Consent Management Platform that is part of OneTrust. The tool automatically scans websites, categorises cookies, and provides customised notifications for visitors to select their desired cookies. With CookiePro you can also optimise your consent banners, thanks to scheduled scans and A/B tests.  

The benefits of CookiePro by OneTrust 

  • An extensive platform with additional add-ons 

  • Geolocation functionality to comply with international laws 

  • The platform can scan behind 'walls' such as logins and portals 

The disadvantages of CookiePro by OneTrust 

  • CookiePro is sometimes too extensive for smaller websites 

  • The licence is expensive 

How do you choose the perfect CMP for your organisation?

Every organisation has different needs and expectations of consent management. The choice depends on several factors, such as the volume of visitors to your website, your budget, and the need for specific features. Below is a brief comparison: 

  • Pricing: As with CookiePro, Cookiebot's pricing takes into account the number of pages to be scanned. Since Cookiebot's scanner is known for its functionalities, it can be expensive. We do not recommend Cookiebot for multinationals since the regulation of Geolocation rules is more effective at CookiePro.  

  • Features: The scanner is the main feature that we look at when assessing CMPs. Cookiebot uses newer techniques to collect as many cookies as possible on the website. Furthermore, the other features are generally similar to the other CMPs.  

  • Banner: The appearance of the banner is slightly more limited at Cookiebot compared to the other CMPs. This will always retain elements that that are specific to a Cookiebot banner that you cannot change.  

  • Pricing: Usercentrics' pricing is based on monthly sessions, independent of the number of domains. It could be more cost-effective if you have multiple domains. However, Usercentrics is one of the more expensive CMPs when considering large volumes.

  • Features: Usercentrics offers the most features among all CMPs. The tool primarily focuses on optimizing opt-ins. Comprehensive A/B testing and extensive reporting are crucial elements within Usercentrics.

  • Banner: The banner is fully customizable with custom CSS. The banner can look exactly the way you want it to. Usercentrics also provides insights into which banner designs gather the most opt-ins.

  • Pricing: The costs of CookieHub are determined entirely by domain and by number of sessions. For larger volumes, we are more likely to recommend another CMP. For smaller volumes (that also bill on the number of sessions) this will be the most cost-efficient solution.  

  • Features: The features are pretty basic  

  • Banner: The banner offers various layout options. However, the styling is more limited than with CookiePro   

  • Pricing: This is one of the more expensive CMPs. This CMP, unlike CookieHub, does not bill on volume of traffic (based on sessions) but only on the domain name and number of pages that the scanner visits. Additional domains require the purchase of a new licence.   

  • Features: CookiePro offers the most extensive range of features. One of the strong points is that multiple geolocations can be added, so you can always maximise your data collection on an international level.  

  • Banner: CookiePro has extensive visual options that allow you to style the banner to your branding. CookiePro also offers different layouts, and almost all colours and copy.  

How do you keep your CMP up to date?

When setting up a CMP, it is important to keep the platform up-to-date. Many tools update regularly so you don’t need to concern yourself with technical problems. Regulatory bodies also introduce new guidelines or regulations. 

Technical Updates 

Your CMP will publish information about these regular updates (via the tool itself or their own blog) and the European Data Protection Board (more specifically, the Cookie Banner Taskforce). Too technical for you? Then our experts are here to help — they will keep you informed about everything you need to take into account. 

New guidelines 

In January 2023, the EDPB published new guidelines. We’ve summarised the most important points for you: 

  • Consent is by definition 'opt-in': You cannot place cookies without the user's consent. All cookie categories should be disabled by default, except for the cookies that are necessary for the operation of the website or app. Users can then give permission to collect and use cookies for every category. 

  • No nudging on the cookie pop-up: Every button on the cookie banner should look the same. In other words, you cannot use colours that can direct visitors in a certain direction (e.g., a green button for 'accept cookies' and a red button for 'refuse cookies') 

  • Mandatory "Refuse all cookies" button: In each cookie pop-up there should be a clear option to refuse all cookies. Users should be able to visit your website without cookies.  

  • Ability to customise consent: Users should be able to change their consent on your website at any time — for example, with an easy-to-find button that opens the Consent Preference Centre.  

Vous avez des questions sur CookieHub?  Nous avons la réponse

Why do you need a CMP?

Non-compliance with GDPR regulations exposes your organisation to significant legal and financial risks. European organisations that process personal data without the necessary consent or appropriate security measures risk fines of up to 4% of annual global turnover or 20 million euros, whichever is higher. 

These fines are imposed after investigations by local authorities, such as the Data Protection Authority (DPA) in Belgium and the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA). They can start investigations autonomously or after a complaint from third parties. An example is the Belgian press group Roularta, which was fined €50,000 by the DPA.

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In a nutshell

  • If you use cookies or other trackers for behavioural advertising, analytics, remarketing, or personalised content, you may need a consent management platform (CMP)

  • CMPs help you collect consent and store data. They give users control over what information they share and help organisations to work GDPR compliant

  • Stay up-to-date on the latest GDPR guidelines to avoid fines or complaints

  • Anyone who does not comply with GDPR regulations risks heavy fines and serious reputational damage

CMP's mentioned in this article

Request a CMP audit

Do you want to be certain that your CMP and website or app comply with the latest GDPR guidelines and that your data processing is aligned with all current regulations? Then our extensive CMP audit is for you.

Our experts will evaluate your current cookie banner, consent processes, and data processing. We identify potential problems and show you how to solve them as efficiently as possible. 

With our CMP audit, you minimise potential risks, build trust with your customers and partners, and lay a solid foundation for digital success. 

Jary Winters
Jary Winters
Digital marketer

As an experienced specialist in the field of CMPs and a certified Data Protection Officer (DPO), Jary Winters not only offers extensive expertise in managing CMPs such as Usercentrics, Onetrust, and Cookiehub, but also provides expert advice on GDPR compliance.

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