Why HTTPS Matters to Your Business Website

If you are current on your search engine optimization skills then you may be considering converting you non-secure website to one with HTTPS. Google.com is encouraging website admins to change their non-secure websites to a secured version by adding a secure certificate.

HTTPS (hyper text transfer protocol) is a term to describe the technology used to connect with a server. Another example is FTP (file transfer protocol). The current protocol user to secure a website is Transport Layer Security (TLS.) The older protocol was Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). In conversation, you’ll hear admins use the three acronyms interchangeably. SSL seems to be the most common termed used when referring to a secure website, even though it the only one of the three terms not in use!

If you operate an eCommerce website, then SSL is required. You need it to secure your shopper’s account information, credit card data. Your merchant account provider will require a secure certificate too. They may even specify which issuer the SSL certificate must be purchased from.

If your website is an informational website, then you may be questioning if you need SSL running on your website. Because Google is using SSL as a lightweight ranking factor, the answer is “yes.” Consider adding SSL to your website. If you are just starting up a new website, then it’s easy to purchase a secure certificate. Your website hosting provider probably sells them, although they can be purchased elsewhere, and probably for less money. For non-eCommerce websites, there are free versions of SSL certificates.

SSL can also protect the privacy of your users – what they look at on your website it kept private. SSL protects the admin section of your website – for example, the dashboard login to your WordPress site.
Google.com wants us to convert to HTTPS because they want to make the internet more secure. An HTTPS website guarantees three things:

  • Encryption
  • Data integrity /li>
  • Authentication /li>

Encryption means that the data transferred to and from the website is secured and cannot be intercepted by hackers.

Data integrity means that the contents of your website are as you intended them to be. The links and texts are accurate. They are not redirects to a malicious website because the website data was compromised while it was in flight.

Authentication means that the server contacted is actually your server and not a redirect. IT makes sure you are talking to the right server and that they are who they say they are.
Google.com is now using HTTPS as a lightweight ranking factor. Your site won’t be penalized for not having SSL but is does affect rank for about 1% of queries.

Google is still not penalizing websites for not having SSL, but that is not expected to last.