Disclaimers are statements that inform readers of important things they need to know. For example, an Affiliate Disclaimer lets people know someone may make a commission from clicking a link. An "As Is" Disclaimer lets people know that whatever they're buying is sold in that state. A "Results Not Typical" Disclaimer helps manage user expectations.
You never know who is reading your blog and whether they take your word as prophecy. By using a Disclaimer, you let your readers - whoever they are - know what they can expect from your blog.
You can add a Disclaimer to your Blogger or Blogspot site in only a few clicks, and having one can serve important legal and personal purposes. We'll show you why you should have one, and how to add it.
Why Bloggers Use Disclaimers
Whether you use your blog as a way to talk to friends and family, have dreams of growing it to reach hundreds of thousands of hits a day, use it to sell your goods or make advertising income, you can benefit from using Disclaimers.
We recommend using Disclaimers in the following cases:
- You participate in affiliate programs
- You accept compensation for content (sponsored posts, etc.)
- You provide what a reasonable person might consider advice in areas like fitness, health, nutrition or DIY tips
- You are a professional who's blogging and your posts may be interpreted as providing professional advice (such as if you are a dietician, therapist, lawyer, etc.)
- You produce content that might be potentially offensive
Here's why these five groups benefit from Disclaimers.
If you participate in affiliate programs, like Amazon Associates, those programs likely require you to disclose the use of your affiliate links within posts or on other pages.
You can disclose these on each post, on your About Me page, and through a link to a Disclaimer in your footer.
Adding these Disclaimers is required for participation in the program because they are effectively advertisements. Governmental agencies like the FTC now focus their interest on bloggers, content creators, and other citizens of the internet who serve as advertisements but who don't disclose their participation.
Advertisements and Sponsored Posts
Affiliate programs are a popular way to monetize blogs, but they're not the only way. If you accept payment to blog about a product or a business, then the post is an advertisement and you must share that fact with your readers.
Advertisements are different from affiliate programs because they may feature a one-off payment and there's usually a contract involved. Some brands or advertisers may not require you to disclose the post as part of the terms of the contract, but the law still requires you to disclose sponsored posts.
Here's an example from lifestyle blog Gal Meets Glam that discloses a post is sponsored by Nike with a simple "thank you" statement at the end of the post:
The more clear you make it that your post is sponsored or that you've made any compensation from it, the better.
Do you run a blog that chronicles your health and fitness journey? Maybe you run a cooking blog or share the story of your hobby along with recipes and cooking tips.
If you do this, you need a Disclaimer.
When readers may misconstrue content as professional advice, disclaimers protect your liability against people who take this advice and have mishaps.
A Disclaimer for these blogs might suggest that the work on the blog is your opinion and your opinion alone and that you're not responsible for the outcome if someone were to apply your thoughts to their own life.
Here's a short example of a Medical Disclaimer from Perfect Keto, which provides information on the keto diet.
Do you hold a professional license and blog in your field of practice? You need a Professional Advice Disclaimer ASAP.
Any content you write that shouldn't serve as actual professional legal/medical/therapeutic/financial advice should come with a Disclaimer that states this explicitly. It protects your credibility as a professional and prevents liability lawsuits.
These Disclaimers are critical, and you should post them both within your blog text and in the footer of your Blogger site.
Kara Lydon, the foodie dietician, added a Disclaimer to her site. It states that none of her content should be construed as medical advice even though she writes as a registered dietician (RD):
Offensive or Adult Content
If you post or allow others to post content that may be considered offensive or not-safe-for-work (NSFW), post a Disclaimer.
These Disclaimers typically live on the relevant post. However, if you dedicate your blog to a type of adult, sensitive, or offensive content, you might add a longer Disclaimer or dedicated Disclaimer page that you post a link to in your footer.
How to Add Your Disclaimer to Your Blogger
Generally, a Disclaimer fits well into the footer of your site in the form of a link. A link is less clunky and directs readers to a full Disclaimer page that's easily viewed. People also know to look to a footer to find important links to things like legal agreements and Disclaimer information.
Note that If you use Disclaimers as part of upholding the Terms of Service of an affiliate program, you may also need to add disclaimers to each of your blog posts that have affiliate links. Experts consider adding a succinct disclaimer to the top of each blog post as a best practice.
Here's how to add a link to a Disclaimer page to the footer of your blog.
Step 1: Login to Blogger and go to your account dashboard.
Step 2: In the left side menu, select Pages.
Step 3: Select New Page
Step 4: Title your new page "Disclaimer" or name it specifically (for example, "Affiliate Disclaimer" or "Medical Advice Disclaimer"). Add the text of your agreement in the main text box. Click Publish when done.
Step 5: In the left side menu, select Layout.
Step 6: Find the Footer section and click Add a Gadget.
Step 7: In the window that opens, scroll to find the Pages gadget and click the blue button next to the gadget to add it to your footer.
Step 8: The Configure Page List window will open. Check the box next to your Disclaimer page to add it to your footer. Click Save when done.
If you want to add your Disclaimer link to a different section of your blog instead of the footer, go back to step 6 and choose a different area other than the footer. The rest of the steps will remain the same.
A Disclaimer helps to protect you from liability and keeps your blog compliant with the Terms and Conditions of many popular blogging programs like Amazon Affiliates. It is the gold standard in transparency about who you are and what your blog offers.