Complying with Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation when using Yotpo SMS & Email
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This information is not legal advice. While we do our best to provide useful information as a starting point, Yotpo SMS & Email advises all merchants to obtain professional legal advice to ensure that all marketing campaigns are sent in full compliance with all applicable laws.
If you are one of the merchants sending SMS marketing messages to Canadian shoppers, you must familiarize yourself with the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) - the federal law dealing with spam and other electronic threats. Violating this regulation might result in fines of up to $1M per violation for individuals and up to $10M per violation for businesses. All Yotpo SMS & Email users can easily adhere to it by following a few simple and intuitive steps.
The following article will introduce you to the main takeaways of the CASL and how we help you remain compliant at all times.
How to stay compliant with the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation
Before sending marketing messages to Canadian consumers, you must:
- Obtain proper consent
- Identify yourself and include contact details
- Include a method to unsubscribe/opt-out of messaging
How to get consent
The CASL defines two types of consent:
- Express (recommended): when someone has explicitly agreed to receive promotional marketing emails or messages from you.
- Implied: when you have an existing relationship with the recipient, and it is reasonable to believe they would expect to receive marketing messages from your business; when a person makes their email address or phone number publicly available by publishing them on a website and does not include a statement that they do not want to receive commercial electronic messages at that address or number.
This is done at your store’s checkout or via our various subscriber collection tools. All of them are built-in for compliance with all legal regulations, collect only express consent, and include the required legal verbiage.
How to send text marketing messages in full compliance
Apart from obtaining proper consent, the CASL requires you to include the following information in every message:
Your sender identification
- The brand’s name
- Contact information or a link to contact information, including a valid mailing address and at least one of the following:
- Email address
- Web address
- Phone number to reach an agent or voice messaging system
The brand’s name can be easily added to every text message via the Site name shortcode.
А clear opt-out Method
The CASL requires you to give customers clear instructions on how to opt out, such as the STOP to opt out verbiage in every text message. It is important to remember that opting-out must be free and available at all times.
The SMS campaign text editor automatically includes the STOP to opt out verbiage or an unsubscribe link to all your text messages and ensures compliance at all times.
Quebec's additional regulation - Bill 96
In May 2022, Québec’s National Assembly adopted Bill 96. This bill brought significant amendments to the French language charter and highlighted the notion that Quebec consumers have the right to be served in French. It affects all brands located in Québec or brands that are sending messages to Québecians and obligates them to publish their content in French, or publish their content in another language, as long as an additional French version is as accessible and of the same quality.
This means that SMS & Email users who fall into that category must send messages both in English and French.
This was our quick guide on staying compliant with the CASL before sending marketing messages to Canadian citizens. Don’t hesitate to go to our Knowledge Base for more useful articles, or contact us if you have any questions or feedback.