Do I need an SSL certificate? The answer is YES!

For a couple of years now, I’ve been expressing to clients that the time is coming for SSL certificates on all websites. Google has been increasingly pushing to get more websites in compliance. Last year, they announced that if your site had membership login or took credit card info it was a must to have an SSL certificate. Now, a general contact form is enough to require it. And, finally, Google is giving a ranking boost to secure sites over those that aren’t secure. In this article, I’m going to explain what an SSL certificate is and why you need to jump on board with it in 2018.

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer.  In technical terms, it stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, which is the https:// in front of your domain name in a browser.  This means that the connection between your website and your visitor’s computer is a secure, encrypted connection.  If a visitor submits information, it is secure as it transfers across the internet.  It doesn’t mean you have a hack-proof website.  No one has that.

So how will this new change affect your business? If you do not have an HTTPS:// website, then the internet browser will warn customers that your site is not secure. All HTTP websites will be displayed with a red padlock next to them in the browser. If you have a correctly installed SSL certificate, then there will be a green padlock instead.

An incorrectly installed SSL certificate (or not having one at all) will heavily impact the amount of traffic going through to non-secure websites. If you don’t have an SSL certificate on your website, you run a massive risk of losing valuable business. This is especially critical for those who rely on their website traffic for direct leads and sales. Existing customers may not be able to make purchases either, because eCommerce payment gateways (like PayPal, Stripe etc.) are stopping all payments going through non-secure sites.

The other issue you face is making sure stored customer details stay safe. SSL Certificates protect your customers’ sensitive information by encrypting the data they send to you, then decrypting it once you’ve received it.

Ensure that your website benefits from Google’s new SSL changes by making sure you have an SSL certificate correctly installed across your entire site, including all your images, forms and content.

Get in touch today to see how we can help ensure your customers stay safe and your traffic stats don’t decrease.



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