Importance of Migration to HTTPS and its Impact on SEO

Importance of Migration to HTTPS and its Impact on SEO

The majority of web users think that the internet is an unsafe place for making transactions. They fear that this technology will invade their online privacy, and hence they are skepticalabout trusting online sites. 

This lack of trust keeps them away from making digital payments. Google’s main motto is to provide a secured web experience to its customers, and hence it announced HTTPS as a ranking signal on August 6th, 2014. Along with HTTPS comes encryption and this encryption security helps boost your website in SEO rankings. When your entire site is encrypted, it is called “Always-on SSL” (AOSSL) or HTTPS Everywhere.

About HTTPS/SSL?

HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) is the secured version of HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol). This extra “s” gives your site all the security and protection against cyber-criminals.

HTTPS provides end-to-end encryption, making the web portal secure for transmission of data and financial transactions. For migrating from HTTP to HTTPS, you need to buy an SSL certificate and install the same on your website.

SSL (Secure Socket Layers) certificate encrypts browser-server communication, with the 2048-bit key and authenticates the site too.

When a normal text is encrypted, it looks like a coded language, as shown below.

Example:

Normal Text: Website security is essential

Encrypted Text: klei$8778#jii%sdjfjk

This text is in a non-readable format, and hackers too are unable to intercept the same.

SSL certificate, when activated on the site, shows two trust symbols.

· Padlock in Address Bar

· HTTPS in URL

Image Source

Even browsers opt for secured sites and hence they label HTTP sites as “Not Secure”.

SSL certificates are best for e-commerce industries and finance enterprises, wherein a lot of monetary transactions take place. Their 3-layer protection security comprises of:

· Encryption of Information

· Protection of Data

· Authentication of Business

Many cheap SSL certificate providers provide SSL certificates at nominal rates for securing customer’s business. One such destination is SSL2BUY, which offers multiple varieties of SSL certificates to individuals as well as business enterprises. This global SSL certificate provider has all leading SSL brands and SSL products for securing your business empire.

SSL and its Impact on SEO:

When Google announced an SSL certificate as a boosting signal for SEO, all business owners started installing an SSL certificate on their sites for taking dual benefits of encryption security and SEO ranks. SSL certificate is precious because it exhibits safety and security for visitors in the form of trust icons.

According to a study by GlobalSign, 85% of online shoppers prefer secured sites. Hence companies using SSL certificates rise and shine amongst other competitors who are using HTTP sites.

Example: Cloudtech saw a visible change in keyword ranking as well as overall page visibility, after migrating to HTTPS.

Image Source

Secured sites (HTTPS sites) have better click-through rates as well as conversion rates than non-secure sites. So apart from increasing SEO ranks, adding SSL to your site has multiple advantages that can’t be ignored.

Selection of SSL Certificate:

Now that business owners are aware of the link between SSL and SEO, the next question is:

Which SSL certificate is the ideal choice for SEO?

The answer to the above question depends solely on your business requirement. A brief on some basic types of SSL certificates are mentioned below.

Types of SSL Certificates:

1. Single Domain SSL certificate:

Best choice for small industries and individuals having single sites, this SSL certificate secures only the main domain of the website.

Example:      www.mysite.com

2. Wildcard SSL Certificate:

This SSL certificate secures the main domain and multiple first-level sub-domains with a single certificate. This SSL certificate is ideal for medium businesses.

Example:      www.mysite.com also secures blog.mysite.com, article.mysite.com

3. Multi-Domain / SAN SSL Certificate:

This SSL certificate is ideal for large corporates because it secures multiple sites; i.e. it secures multiple domains and multiple sub-domains of various levels too.

Example:      www.mysite.com also secures blog.mysite.com, article.mysite.com, neha.blog.mysite.com, extra.article.mysite.com, www.yoursite.com

All SSL certificates are available in 3 validations. They are:

· Domain-Validation (DV)

· Organisation Validation (OV)

· Extended Validation (EV)

DV SSL certificates can be quickly issued in a few minutes whereas OV SSL and EV SSL are issued after verification of organization, and hence their issuance time in 1-3 days. EV SSL authenticates the business too and hence is considered the most powerful and secured SSL amongst the others.

This is the main reason why companies with EV SSL have increased conversion rates, and incredible brand reputation, thus keeping them on the top of the competition.

Buy & Install SSL Certificate:

After the selection of an SSL certificate, comes the task of choosing the SSL certificate provider. Competition persists everywhere, and hence many cheap SSL Certificate Providers sell varied SSL certificates at discounted rates. One such destination for all your web security requirements is SSL2BUY.

This globally trusted SSL provider has all popular brands of SSL certificates like Comodo, GeoTrust, RapidSSL,Digicert, GlobalSign, Symantec etc. After the selection of an SSL certificate, the business owner needs to Create CSR (Certificate Signing Request) from server to device along with a private key.

Later the owner needs to provide the CSR details in the SSL form to the service provider. Once you receive the SSL certificate, install the same in the Web Host Manager (WHM).

After the installation of SSL, the migration process of the website from HTTP to HTTPS begins. Ensure that the entire site (URLs, files, images, videos) is migrated to HTTPS for the rocket boost.

HTTPS Migration:

Before migrating to HTTPS, site backup is essential, so take a complete backup of the entire site. Later follow the below process.

1. Addition of HTTPS to Admin:

Open the root folder by typing wp-config.php in the search mode. Add the below code in the root folder.

define(‘FORCE_SSL_ADMIN’, true);

Now you can access the login page with HTTPS; i.e.

https://mysite.com/wp-admin.

2. Update URLs:

Go to Settings > General and change the site address from HTTP to HTTPS in the URL.

Image Source

Write the old URL starting with HTTP and type the URL with HTTPS in the new site address. Tick all the options relating to content, links, attachments, etc. as shown in the above image.

Lastly, click Update URLs.

3. Implement 301 Redirects:

301 redirects are mainly used for sending web traffic from other URLs to your desired URL (HTTPS). Server-side 301 redirects are preferred and hence you need to access.htaccess file which is hidden in server. Upload this file to the WP root directory, and add the below codes.

<IfModulemod_rewrite.c>

RewriteEngine On

RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off

RewriteRule^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]

</IfModule>

Image Source

This will ensure that visitors land on the correct pages.

HTTPS Troubleshooting Tips:

1.           Mixed Content Warnings

These warnings usually occur after the migration process, wherein the browser finds some HTTP links on secured (HTTPS) pages. Why no padlock tool pin points the unsecured items on your website, which you can later redirect to HTTPS.

In a Nutshell:

HTTPS comes at a nominal rate, whereas the benefits of HTTPS in URL are uncountable. This secured internet communication goes a long way in securing data privacy and improving the trust of visitors. Go grab your SSL certificate now and secure your digital world.

Cristina Macias
Cristina Macias is a 25-year-old writer who enjoys reading, writing, Rubix cube, and listening to the radio. She is inspiring and smart, but can also be a bit lazy.