So just what is HTTPS?
Put simply, HTTPS (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure) is the secure version of HTTP. It’s an internet communication protocol which protects the data sent between your browser and the website you are visiting.
How does it all work?
In order to make sure that your website provides a secure connection for it’s users you will need an SSL (secure sockets layer) certificate. Essentially this allows you to protect data through an encryption that makes it impossible for anyone to read.
The SSL certificate itself is a small data file that has been provided by a trusted certificate authority such as a hosting company or agency like ourselves. This certificate essentially confirms the identity of the website so when you visit a HTTPS website the SSL certificate will be sent to your browser which provides a secure connection between you and the website. You can easily identify whether a website has an SSL certificate implemented through the HTTPs being in address bar along with a padlock:
Why should your business implement HTTPS?
The issue of whether or not to implement HTTPS on a website has been a hotly debated topic over the last few years between thought leaders within the digital marketing industry. Now it seems that HTTPS could start to have a significant impact on businesses operating within the online spectrum.
This has been fuelled by a number of different factors such as Google announcing back in January that it will be adding a ‘Not Secure’ label to websites seen within its internet browser ‘Google Chrome’ that don’t have HTTPS implemented. Also the fact that a number of companies have made the headlines regarding the inability to be able to provide a secure and safe website for users to access with data leaks becoming a common topic of conversation.
There are a number of reasons why your business should be looking to implement HTTPS across your website:
- It provides a much safer experience for your users – This is so important as many visitors would like to be reassured that the data they pass between your website is secure and not likely to be stolen or leaked.
- It can help to increase your visibility in search engines – Ever since 2014 where Google confirmed HTTPs to be a ranking signal, it’s been working on ensuring that sites that have HTTPs are being rewarded in search engines. This has been further confirmed by the fact that now over 50% of first page search results are from HTTPS sites.
- You will avoid the dreaded ‘Not Secure’ label – This could be the difference between whether a visitor continues to navigate your website or not OR make a purchase or not.
- Higher quality data – This will mean that you will no longer lose vital referral data from HTTPS websites in Google Analytics.
The rise of HTTPS has been gathering pace over a number of years with recent announcements suggesting that this will become commonplace within most websites by the end of the year. Furthermore, this has been further fuelled by customer demands for secure connections to help protect their data before, during and after visiting a website. Therefore, it is of vital importance for businesses to continue to explore the option of HTTPS before it becomes a compulsory requirement.
Are you a business looking to implement HTTPS on your website? Why not get in touch?
Our dedicated team of technical experts are on hand to help you safely and effectively implement HTTPS across your website. Get in touch now by calling 01392 424300 or fill in our contact form on our contact page.