What is an SSL Certificate?
An SSL Certificate (Secure Socket Layer) establishes a secure connection between your web browser and the website you are visiting. Imagine a technology handshake between your computer and the website that MUST happen to allow any information that you send not to be intercepted by another party. Many types of certificates are available, all of which offer a different level of encryption depending on what kind of information you are asking for or your visitors are sending you. Also, for one website to all websites on a server or related to a particular domain (URL). You can find more information on the types of SSL Certificates here.
Why should I have an SSL Certificate?
Following are the three main reasons you should add an SSL certificate to your website.
- The two most important goals of a website are to provide relevant content and a great user experience to your users. We’re not certain about you, but when we are on a website that is secured, that little green lock next to the URL provides a sense of security leading to a better user experience. Now I know that any information I happen to enter on a website that is secure will not be stolen and used maliciously.
- Since 2014, Google has given a boost in search engine ranking for websites that have an SSL installed.
- Now that the web is mainly Content Management Systems or custom applications that allow a site administrator to log in and change content from anywhere that provides access to the internet. It is safer to have an SSL for those times you update that website from an unsecured network like those found in coffee shops, restaurants, schools, libraries, etc. Without it, anyone else on the internet has access to sniff your username and password and substantially change any part your website they wish as if they are you.
Do I need an SSL Certificate?
Have you heard about the changes Google will be implementing throughout the year in 2017? You can read about the changes in SSL directly from the source. Many companies are requiring SSL certificates; which doesn’t mean you need one, but we also didn’t need car insurance in the State of Wisconsin until 2010. Still, it is better to have both. We’ll admit, there was some uncertainty in regards to the timeline for these changes. Some even thought that search engine results would label your website as unsafe or unsecured, we were one. In conclusion, it is in your best interest to have an SSL installed on your site. Not only will it decrease the chances of your site being hacked, hijacked, or information that is intended to be shared only with you to be intercepted by another party; it will also increase your visibility by giving you a boost in the search engine ranking pages (SERP’s).
What if I don’t get an SSL Certificate?
It takes one time for someone to steal your password, hijack your website, and cause damage to your brand, business, and perhaps even your clients. The percentage of risk is uncertain and changing all the time, wouldn’t you want to prevent that from happening? We want you and your potential customers to be safe. We are firmly suggesting every website has one.