What & Why You Need to Make Sure SSL SEO is Implemented?
You May Be Wondering, How Do Search Engines Parse Out Which Site is Secure Or Not?
Answer: HTTPS or HTTP over SSL (TLS)
Did you know that having a secure domain by switching over to a HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure extension (HTTPS) is the EASIEST task to complete to earn more traffic to your website?
Yes, that is right. As an SEO focused article, let us explain from the standpoint of a website wanting to appear on the search results. By securing your site’s connection to the Internet, you do search engines such as Google a considerable favor. They reward you by having your site appear, for the most part, above all the others who aren’t secured.
Have you noticed how websites have the HTTP (stands for hypertext transfer) protocol? HTTP is a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI). A URI is a set of characters stringed together in an address bar. The URI includes a domain & URL (Uniform Resource Location). HTTP is the labeling scheme used at the beginning of every resource. That is computer jargon for a protocol that lets the World Wide Web know & locate your website or server in respect to a computer network.
To tell whether you have it, check to the left of the web address to see if you have the padlock logo. Otherwise, it has “Not Secured” in place.
If you do, awesome! By not having it, you are hemorrhaging all the visitors & potential clients who would otherwise click on to your website. A warning prompt may show up that can compel your visitors to leave. Therefore, you have a high bounce rate instead.
How do I Get HTTPS on my Website?
To label a digital platform as secured by changing the HTTP to HTTPS, the site owner needs to encrypt this web communication protocol through an SSL (Secure Sockets Layers) or the current reincarnation of an SSL called a TLS certificate (see the Intriguing Facts bullet points). SSL certificates are offered to domains. You need to obtain them from certificate authorities (CAs) like high-quality hosting providers like SiteGround or web infrastructure firms like CloudFlare.
What Are SSL Certificates?
In essence, they are security protocols used to authenticate data access& exchanging between the two parties communicating directly through a digital interface. SSL is there for when a user accesses your website’s information on the web. That data is transferred from a browser to a web server. This is a two-system process that also applies to a server to server basis.
To illustrate how the encryption works, SSL certificates are files that give online platforms an extra layer of armor against hackers penetrating your website. Simultaneously, these data certificates communicate to the Internet that the site owner has taken the necessary precautionary steps to prevent confidential information from leaking out to the public. Therefore, your hypertext transfer protocol changes to reflect that protection to HTTPS. Search engines are notified by this as well. They look for that indicator on every URL their “spiders” or robots crawl when indexing.
To know what indexing is, check out our home page. Make sure to have your ”Allow Your Site to be Indexed” box checked, or you never appear on any searches.
Intriguing Facts about SSL Security Certificates
- Users can click the padlock to access the certificate. In there, they rest assured who issued their SSL certificate
- SSL certificates are increasingly being included when you buy hosting
- Don’t have this certificate, no need to fret. TLS (Transport Layer Security) certificates are newer versions of SSL certificates. They are more secure than SSLs. Nowadays, most SSL certificates are compatible & as effective as TLS’s which leads to my last bullet point
- SSL is a term used to describe many TLS certificates as SSL is the generic term used colloquially in the world of cybersecurity
- When you invest in the top level of SSL or TLS, your website’s verified brand prominently displays in the URI. Furthermore, visitors gain trust when interacting with the site’s interface.
To be Clear, SEO Security is a Requirement to Rank
Look at the search result above; this is one of the growing lists of SERPs that are requiring websites that appear on page one to have an SSL or TLS certificate. Everybody there has an HTTPS protocol in their domain. Search spiders crawl or analyze various online platforms. Unsecure websites (those who don’t have a secured connection was built through private connection via a cryptographic protocol such as a TLS certificate) that do not protect people’s information on a contact form, landing page, or transaction section lose their visitors’ trust. HTTP sites then get penalized in all sorts of manners like deoptimization when search algorithms crawl the digital platform. Unsecured websites get pushed down in the SERPs.
Let me tell you that this APPLIES to everyone. You do not need a financially sensitive landing or inner pages like a checkout page to dip in the rankings. This is how SEO ties in with security.
Want to learn more about how some laws affect your digital presence, check out the blog NLM wrote on ADA Compliance & GDPR.
How Sensitive & Valuable is Your Cyber Data & How Can It Harm You?
Having been a ubiquitous technology for the past decades, it is no wonder that its mission to prevail in securing everything on its platform has become pertinent to everyone who is on a computer. You may be thinking, “No big deal. I will just use other search engines like DuckDuckGo, Bing, or AOL.” Firstly, many of those search engine platforms are following what Google is doing. Secondly, you should think that cybersecurity is a big deal. Do not avoid protecting your site because the web is the commerce platform for many years to come.
As I mentioned earlier, everyone is on the go browsing & researching. Therefore, if you ever want to have a foothold on ever selling a product or service every again, you need to be willing to work under Google’s “velvet ropes” by complying to secure your website. The campaign to make global computer networks secured goes beyond Google. In 2016, a nonprofit organization called Let’s Encrypt began handing out free server certificates like TLS’s. Numerous nonprofit digital privacy organizations (e.g. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)), web browsing companies, and other affiliated groups are implementing security procedures in order to prevent attackers relaying information between two parties in direct communication with one another. This breach is known as Man-in-the-Middle in the cryptography world.
Let’s be real here. Data is THE GOLD MINE of the 21st century. Except, this data gold rush is meant to stay. As stated earlier, if a website does not have a padlock icon appearing left of its domain, search engines, particularly Google, will prompt you to turn back. Rightly so, as a simple click makes you & your digital info vulnerable towards organizations, criminals, & undesirables doing everything in their power to, for example, steal money from innocent people’s bank accounts, harass people by spilling valuable material, or even hacking online platforms to sell encrypted data on the black market or dark web. To a lesser degree of severity, information can be turned into propaganda or fake news.
Of course, not all people extracting data have agendas that are malicious. In fact, there are a ton of good marketers that utilize your browsing history to track you to understand how to better sell to you. Have you heard of Facebook Pixels? These 1×1 pixels are placed on you to trigger biases that would get you to buy. There are endless situations that could play out if the Internet’s information was not secure.
Scary Stats That Will Frighten You to Lock Your Online Info Needs via SSL Security
- According to a University of Maryland Clark School study, a hack online happens every 39 seconds!
- Breach Level Index extracted numbers that prove that hackers steal 75 records per second!
- Neil Patel, SEO Superstar, mentions that 68% of internet users believe that current laws for protecting their rights are not good enough
All in all, assure your visitors that your website is run by your firm or organization. To protect all users’ information in their browsers, Google has discouraged all website owners from not cutting corners on this aspect. They will send a warning prompt every time anyone enters a site that is not secured. Protect your online assets and privacy! If you do not know how, let us secure your site for you.
With SSL or TLS certification, everyone wins. To sum up,
- You get to rank and receive more traffic on Google
- You close more customers & protect their information such as their credit card number & passwords from an ever-increasing number of coldblooded hackers
- Thanks to a survey done by GlobalSign, 84% of online consumers would not do any transaction on a platform that had an insecure connection
- You contribute to making the Internet the secure virtual network for the world to interact