How to Automatically Update the Copyright Year in the Footer

May 24, 2022 | Blog

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Is the year on your site's copyright notice up to date? We are five months now into the new year and your footer still shows 2021 or 2020?

If you have a website, one thing you should always keep updated is the copyright date in the footer. The “All Rights Reserved” text should always be accompanied by the current year, or a range of years if your content is from multiple years.

The process of updating the copyright date in the footer is a manual one, at least for most people, and it's no easy task. You have to remember to go into the code and change it every year. If you forget, your website will look outdated, which is not a good thing.

This is why we'll provide you with long-lasting solutions so you don't have to manually do it and worry about it every year!


3 Ways to Auto Update Copyright Year

Auto updating copyright year in website

Now that we know that it's important to update your copyright year, let's look at some ways how to auto-update it.


1. Use a Plugin

If you're using WordPress, there are a few plugins that can help you automatically update your copyright date. One of our favorites is the Simple Copyright Footer plugin.

Once you install and activate the plugin, go to Settings » Simple Copyright Footer to configure it. On the settings page, you will need to enter the copyright text that you want to display in the footer.

You can also choose whether you want to display the copyright notice before or after your footer menu. And if you want, you can also add a link to your privacy policy page for easy navigation.

When you're done, click on the Save Changes button to store your settings. That's it! The plugin will now automatically update your copyright date every year.


2. Use JavaScript

Another way to automatically update your copyright date is to use JavaScript. This script type method requires a bit more code, but it's still relatively simple to do. Just add the following HTML code to your footer:


var today = new Date();

var year = today.getFullYear();

document.write(“Copyright © ” + year + ” Your Website”);


You can also do it with the “All Rights Reserved” text. Here's a sample code:

<p>Copyright © <script>document.write(new Date().getFullYear())</script> Your Website Name All Rights Reserved</p>


3. Use PHP

If you're comfortable working with HTML code, you can also use PHP to automatically update your copyright notice details. Just add the following HTML code:

<?php echo “Copyright © ” . date(‘Y') . ” Your Website”; ?>

Remember to replace “Your Website” with the actual name of your website.

Once you add the HTML code, save your changes and upload the file to your server. That's it! The copyright date in your footer will now be automatically updated to the current year, every year.


Why Update Copyright Years On Websites?

As website owners, there are a few reasons you should know why you should always update the copyright information and date on your website.


Photo of copyright section of the website


The first reason is that it helps build trust with your visitors. If they see that you have an updated copyright year on your web page, they'll know that you're keeping your site up to date and that they can trust the information on it. They might get the impression that your website's rights are outdated and unreliable if your footer copyright still shows the previous years.

Another reason to auto-update the copyright year on your website design is for SEO purposes. Google likes to see fresh content on websites, and an outdated copyright date can signal to them that your site isn't being maintained. This could hurt your ranking in search results.

Lastly, updating your copyright date shows that you're paying attention to the details of your site. It's a small thing, but it can make a big difference in how professional and polished your site looks.


Final Thoughts

Updating the copyright year on your website is a good way to show your visitors that you're keeping your site up to date. It's also good for SEO and can help improve the overall professionalism of your site.

If you're using WordPress, we recommend that you use a plugin to auto-update your copyright date. If you're comfortable and knowledgeable in working with code, you can always use JavaScript or PHP code to auto-update copyright year.

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