Are SSL certificates necessary?

Recent SSL Requirements by Google have affected business websites in monumental ways that you may or may not be aware of at this time. Local Leap Marketing is paving the way for our clients to develop a greater understanding of the security precautions that Google is implementing.

For the past several years, Google has been urging businesses to focus on encrypting their website with SSL certificates for increased security. Effective this past July, the implementation of Google SSL requirements is now officially enforced with sites being flagged as “not secure” if they are lacking this specific certification. The purpose of this change is to radically affect the way in which users think about the security factor of their web activity, be it general browsing or the follow through to purchasing. SSL certificates are intended to bring users a feeling of safety, knowing that their sensitive material being offered is not harming their personal or professional integrity.

The purpose of this information is to further your understanding of exactly what a SSL certificate consists of and how to utilize it to strengthen your business endeavors and your SEO ranking.

Google SSL Certificate

 

SSL Certificates

Many of you may hear this term used but are unaware of what an SSL actually means or what it does. It is a file that interacts with your server to make safe all of the personal and sensitive material that passes back and forth between your business and your clients. It is like the ultimate password, protecting and encrypting data on a very technical level, and all of this electronic transfer happens in just seconds.

So, as you consider your own browsing habits, you probably watch for that little lock icon at the top of the screen to know that you are safe before proceeding further. The appearance of that extra security precaution, which gives you added comfort when sharing your sensitive information with a stranger, is exactly what we are talking about with an SSL. If you want to offer your current and potential customers a trusted website, then this secure connection is the key to that reliability.

In a world where cybercrime is a very real thing with very frequent attacks, now, more than ever, is the time to consider protecting your company and your valued customers at a more serious level. Without this encryption in place to add that necessary security, then you are continually putting your good name and your hard work in a potentially jeopardizing situation.

Protecting A Website With HTTPS

There is a connection that is created between a browser and a secured website each time that someone sits down to look around on their computer or mobile device. Each time this quick and almost seamless connection is established, the browser is essentially commanding that the server make itself known by using a system of various keys to verify that each step is legit. The server must respond with proof of an SSL certificate if there is to be a trusted relationship moving forward. In this response is also the server’s public key information.

Understanding the Link Between Google and SSL

In addition to the aforementioned benefits of bringing a baseline security measure to your website, the addition of an SSL certificate also provides other elements to consider. Your website, among all of the others out there, is constantly sitting as prey for online hackers and cybercriminals. These clever individuals are creating systems that evaluate networks looking for signs of weakness and infiltration. Many times, their success is found at the point of transfer because of lack of encryption. Credit card numbers, login details, and even social security numbers cannot be transmitted securely on your website without an HTTPS in place to protect that classified data. An SSL certificate makes the sensitive information to be seen in an unreadable format outside of its intended server target, so the details have been made secure. This is why making your website secure is of vital importance to Google.

A stronger ranking on Google is also known to those websites that have an SSL certificate. This is because these websites can be trusted to give customers a safer and more trusted online experience, greatly improving conversions and protecting against phishing. A drop in your search rankings with Google would be a devastating blow considering all of the hard work that you have put into pushing your company higher and higher on the charts. Without the reliability of your ranking that you can boast about, then your business is likely to take a hit. This is a risk that most of our customers is never willing to take.

Obtaining an SSL Certificate for Your Website

There are multiple ways to gain an SSL certificate for your website, and there is not necessarily one mode that is better than the other. The variance depends on the browser that you use and the options that your host is able to produce for you. Sometimes a certificate can be installed easily with just a few clicks, and sometimes it is more complicated if certain website elements are hard-coded with http. There are some certificates that are free while others must be purchased, and there are pros and cons in either direction.

When you are ready to add this element of credibility to your business and your website, give us a call. We will provide you with any further information that you may need to obtain an SSL certificate and answer any questions that you may have regarding how its presence will advance your site. We are committed to each of our customers and desire to see your website and your trusted business grow, and we look forward to helping your business grow!

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