On August 6th, 2014, Google began giving websites protected by SSL Certificates a ranking boost. The reason they started doing this is because they want to encourage web administrators to encrypt all user data all the time. Since enabling SSL on a server or website is extremely easy, yet many administrators fail to accomplish the task, Google has decided to take it into their own hands.
Since ranking competition is so high today, and adding SSL encryption to a website is easy, it is very likely to expect that SSL encryption will begin being used by virtually all websites within a few years. Until then, any website owner that incorporates SSL encryption will be at a significant ranking advantage in comparison to their competitors that are not yet early to this SERP-boosting technique.
Why is SSL Encryption Important to Google?
Google values democracy and with a democracy, privacy always follows suit. It’s great that websites encrypt a user’s login and checkout information so that it can’t be hijacked by hackers, but that’s not all they should be protecting. A user’s website visiting habits, location, and other information could be leaked to hackers when they aren’t on a login page or a checkout page. By incorporating SSL encryption throughout a site, hackers will not be able to hijack as much information. Incorporating SSL encryption boosts the productivity of website owners since they don’t have to deal with hacking problems, and it also boosts the productivity of Google since the overall internet is in good condition.
How Do I Incorporate SSL Into My Site?
Since using SSL will change a website’s URL, it is important to use the HTTP Strict Transport Security protocol (HSTS) to not have to use a 301 redirect from HTTP to HTTPS. It’s also important to update Google with a new sitemap of a site that has just begun using SSL encryption.
As for the actual process behind incorporating SSL into your site, you can use a service such as Comodo SSL to purchase an SSL certificate https://ssl.comodo.com/ Prices for certificates range from anywhere from $10 to $500 a year, but you’ll definitely want to go with Comodo since they are a security company offering a service for SSL encryption which is meant for security itself.
The Benefits of Incorproating SSL Into Your Site
In addition to getting the added benefit of Google ranking your site higher if you incorporate SSL, you’ll also be able to impress your visitors and potential customers with your security protocols. Sites protected by SSL have a safety lock icon or green bar on most browsers, which increases purchase intent and trust for visitors.