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HTTP to HTTPS: How It Impacts Your Business and SEO

HTTP websites across the globe are switching to a safer version: HTTP Secure. This move is not about following a digital trend. The aim is to create a safer and more secure browsing experience for customers and boost a site’s trustworthiness.

When Google said that sites running on HTTPS with an SSL key certificate will get a ranking boost, businesses have been increasingly curious about making this change. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons. Before discussing them in detail, here are some basics:

HTTPS

Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure is the secure version of HTTP. It secures the communication between your browser and the website (and vice versa). It uses a standard security protocol (SSL) to jumble confidential information so it won’t be readable to anyone with malicious intent.

SSL

Secure Sockets Layer encrypts your connection to prevent anyone from eavesdropping or peering into confidential information (e.g. social insurance numbers, credit card numbers, login credentials). In brief, your connection to and from the web server is absolutely private.

SSL Certificate

For this communication to remain secure, you need an SSL certificate. It is a data file containing your company profile, domain name, the issuing CA, and the certificate’s expiration date. So, when you access a website, the browser checks the validity of the SSL certificate. If the check is successful, it displays a “lock” icon in the address bar. Otherwise, a warning will be shown on the page. The padlock is a security indicator for online users to trust the website.

get-an-ssl-handshake

Now that’s covered, it’s time to weigh possible challenges and favorable impacts.

HTTPS/SSL MIGRATION ISSUES

  • Site Latency

Provided your server is up to date, performance issues may not be a concern if you switch. Still, it’s worth taking careful steps before the move. Gear up your HTTP site for proper transition, otherwise, site delays/downtime might become a real issue.

  • Unrelated Redirects

its-not-always-the-homepage

HTTPS migration follows a painstaking timeline. To ensure a successful switch, start with smart planning. Look into your website structure, dissect each section, and scrutinize every detail to avoid irrelevant redirects. Redirect issues only happen when the switch was not implemented properly.

  • Mixed (HTTP/HTTPS) Mode

secure-your-connection-with-https-only

This may cause unnecessary confusion, especially to a site’s visitor. When your HTTPS connection loads insecure script in the background this results in an error: “This page is trying to load scripts from unauthenticated sources.” This puts your site in the bad position of being susceptible to third party attacks.

The solution is to do sitewide migration to HTTPS. You can enable HSTS (HTTPS Strict Transport Security) to ensure it will only run on HTTPS, provided all your scripts (HTML, Javascript, CSS) are all switched over to HTTPS.

  • Cost

Acquiring an SSL certificate costs up to hundreds a year.

BENEFITS FOR HTTPS/SSL IMPLEMENTATION

  • Trust

boost-sites-trustworthiness

If your web address displays the green security indicator and a padlock icon in the address bar, that’s proof you are looking after customer safety. This is your brand’s visual security statement that boosts a client’s sense of trust. Trust, the most valuable commodity to all businesses, perpetuates repeat business.

  • Secure Browsing Experience

secure-browsing-experience

– Authentication

Installing an SSL certificate is essential for all businesses, big or small, to add security to online transactions. It verifies the identity of the website being accessed to secure the transmission of sensitive information between the customer and the server.

– Secures Integrity of Data

Without SSL, everyone’s online activities are readily accessible for data tampering and phishing. For this reason, a key certificate will help shield everyone from malicious attacks.

– Guards Against Data Breaches

SSL encrypts all online transactions (browsing history, credit/debit card numbers, social insurance number, passwords, etc.). With data encryption, confidential data will appear as garbled texts to the interceptor.

SEO Ranking

As previously mentioned, Google gives a perk to sites running on HTTPS/SSL: Increased visibility and SEO. But when it comes to search ranking, the real deal remains your site’s content quality score.

Are you ready to make the security switch? Avoid missteps by calling Local SEO Search at 1-877-689-5268. We are your professional resource to ensure a smooth transition to HTTPS.

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