What is a SSL Certificate and Why Does Your Business Need One?

In the current day of technological jargon, SSL may just be another abbreviation you don’t feel the need to know. But in super simple lingo (no that’s not what SSL means!) no website without an SSL will be listed as secure on Google any more. So if you are accessing a site that doesn’t have the encryption, you will get a notification to say you are about to visit a nonsecure site and that you’ll need to click to continue. This is a hazardous warning sign and an immediate loss of potential customers. Here’s why they’re important, how you can go about getting one and the many benefits of having one in place.

WHAT IS AN SSL CERTIFICATE?

SSL Certificates enable data encryption on the internet and allow data to be transmitted securely from a web server to a browser. With an SSL certificate, your website can use the https protocol and will display a padlock in end users web browsers to indicate the connection is secure. It’s a means of authenticating an organisations identity. If your website doesn't have an SSL certificate, people will have a sign much like this, warning them of such.

WHY DO I NEED AN SSL CERTIFICATE?

SSL Certificates are an essential part of the internet. They not only encrypt communication between your computer and the server where a website is located, but they also provide verification that a site is what it claims to be. It can also help improve your Google search engine ranking – Google simply won’t like your website if it doesn’t have one! That’s also why websites using SSL have been shown to benefit from higher ranking in search results – it’s a simple SEO trick. If you’re taking orders and payment online, you’ll definitely need one. Buyers know not to buy from a website that doesn’t have the padlock icon in the URL.

IS THIS AN ADDITIONAL PURCHASE YOU’LL NEED TO MAKE WITH YOUR WEB HOSTS?

Obviously every web host is different – I’m safe in the knowledge that my hosting with Black Nova Designs offers a free SSL certificate so I know at all times that my website is secure, safe and current. If you were to open a website and be told that it wasn’t secure, would you click ‘continue at own risk’? I’d say probably not, and your customers would do the same. That could potentially lose you valuable sales. It’s really not worth the risk. It’s worth getting in touch with your web host just to make sure that you’re compliant and safe, better done before it’s too late!

INTERNET SAFETY

There was recently a mass hacking that saw many equestrian and country brands having their websites hacked. The one common anomaly? They didn’t have the relevant certification. The hackers were actively searching for websites that didn’t have one. When it’s such a cheap and simple addition to your website, is it worth not having? No!

For more information on SSL and website safety and security, please see our SSL Certificates blog.

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