You may have heard of SSL certificates, but do you know why they’re so important in 2018?
Before we discuss the benefits of SSL certification, let’s understand what it is. SSL is an acronym for Secure Sockets Layer. SSL certificates provide a secure connection between a customer’s browser and your server, ensuring that confidential information is protected along the way from online theft.
Here are 5 reasons why SSL certification is important for your website:
- It stops information theft.
SSL technology creates a secure connection between web servers and browsers by encrypting data as it passes through, making it readable only by the party it’s intended for. This protects sensitive personal data, such as passwords and credit card numbers, from being intercepted and stolen on the way to your website.
- It gives people visiting your site a sense of security.
An SSL certificate shows visitors that you value their security and that your website is a safe to browse, interact with, and shop from. And it’s very easy for users to see if your website is SSL secure by looking at the URL structure of your website. If it starts with “http”, it is not secure. If it starts with “https”, it is secure. With online identity theft on the rise, people are paying attention and seeking out secure sites, making information security more important than ever.
- It’s a necessity for online payments.
The Payment Card Industry (PCI) requires that any website accepting payments with an encryption of at least 128-bit is required to have an SSL certificate.
- SSL certification can boost your Google ranking.
Google uses HTTPS as a ranking signal. Although Google refers to it as a “very lightweight signal”, it still gives an advantage to websites that have implemented HTTPS, and every little bit helps with Google rankings. As more and more websites switch over to SSL certification, having a secure HTTPS connection will become essential for improving your Google ranking.
- Google has made it mandatory in 2018.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, on January 1, 2018, Google starting flagging websites that don’t have SSL certification. With this change, if a user tries to visit a site without SSL certification, a ‘Not Secure’ message will appear. With security paramount for website users, a ‘not secure’ message will prompt users to leave immediately, a potential disaster for awebsite.
Richard Zion, Qiigo’s SEO Manager, explains, “Adding an SSL certificate and switching to https demonstrates to users that you take the security of your site seriously.”
In today’s world where security breaches happen so regularly, these steps help to build confidence with your customers. SSL certification can boost your Google ranking, keep sensitive data secure, and give your customers a sense of security on your website. If you don’t have an SSL certificate on your website yet, 2018 is the year to get it done.