What is an SSL Certificate and why should you need one?
SSL is the abbreviation for 'Secure Sockets Layer' which is the standard security technology used to establish an encrypted link between a web server and a browser to ensure that any data which is passed between them, i.e. the web server (which hosts your website) and the user's browser, will remain completely private. The newer browsers now flag up websites that do not have SSL.
Most local businesses rely on their website to bring in enquiries throughout the year, but what happens if a visitor to your website gets a warning message that the website is 'Not Secure'? Will that encourage them to enter their details in your website enquiry form? Certainly not. In fact the opposite is likely to happen. The visitor will think your website is unsafe and most likely go elsewhere to find what they are looking for. Of course, they may just give you a call instead, but it doesn't really look good if your company website flags up a non-secure warning message. An SSL certificate will prevent this from happening.
Google prefers websites to be secure
For quite a long time now Google has been trying to encourage website owners to implement SSL certificates to make their websites secure. The latest web browsers are now beginning to require it as a basic standard. This is especially relevant when a user is required to enter information using contact forms, search boxes or login panels.
Consider this... The success of Google relies mainly on providing it's users with the best search results possible. It also wants to make it's users feel secure while browsing the internet. With this in mind, it's now becoming more and more important for websites to have an SSL certificate installed to give visitors peace of mind before they browse your web pages, otherwise a 'Not Secure' warning will be displayed to caution users against using the site. An SSL certificate will prevent this from happening.
When you have an SSL certificate installed your website address will begin using https:// instead of http://. For example, https://www.google.co.uk
Although secure websites are now in favour over non-secure websites and gain a small but relevant boost in their position in the search results, it’s quite possible that in time Google and other major search engines will also begin to drop non-secure websites in their listings. It's not unreasonable to assume that eventually websites that have had the advantage of being on the first page will gradually disappear from the first page search results.
How to Get an SSL certificate for your website
Even if your website doesn't have an enquiry form, login page or checkout page, or any means of inputting sensitive, private or financial information, you can still keep your website visitors feeling more secure and obtain the SEO benefits by installing an SSL Certificate on your site. But how do you get one?
Usually, the best place to start is your web host provider. SSL certificates used to be quite expensive but now are much more affordable. Here at Studio Arts we provide SSL certificates for clients only and only recommend the ones we install. There are different types of SSL certificates and you need to make sure that the one you get for your website covers all your needs.
If you require more details please contact us via our enquiry form or call 07789 021420 during office hours.
* Please note, as I previously mentioned, the SSL certificates we install are only available to our clients who have a web hosting account with us.