When it comes to perusing the Internet, quality security is something that many of us tend to take for granted. After all, we are searching for what we need online and we don't often think about good encryption and trusted third parties. However, these factors are something that are very important for online interaction, especially when it comes to SEO.
In 2014 at an annual I/O conference, it was stated by a Google Webmaster that "all communications should be secure be default" and that a move needed to be made that would make Https standard so that websites would be more secure on each end.
Now that we're in 2017, have you made the switch to Https? If not, should you and is it worth it? Let's delve into some basic information and why Google called for such a move back in 2014 to help you decide.
Http vs. Https: The Basics
Http (which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol) and Https (Secure Hypertext Transfer Protocol) are two types of basic structures that allow for the showing and receiving of information on the World Wide Web, which is typically through a basic web page. Https was created after Http with the intention to do the exact same thing with an additional layer of protection and security by using what is known as SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), which transports secure data.
SSL is particularly involved with online transactions, authentications and verifications. When secure information is exchanged online, such as credit card numbers or passwords, and it is done through Https rather than Http, it requires SSL so that hackers and other individuals can be prevented from accessing the information.
Switching to Https: The SEO Advantages
There are many all-around advantages to the recommendation from Google to switch from the standard Http website to the more secure Https website. It is a safe and smart choice for anyone, but it is particularly smart for those involved in ecommerce. It will not only increase the security of your website as well as that of your customers, but it also provides these SEO benefits:
When you first switch to Https from Http, you may not see a boost in your ranking immediately. However, SEO professionals recommend it as part of your overall strategy. In addition, with the evolution of Google's search algorithms and their previous statements on how they want to push for an internet that is more secure, there is a good possibility that Https could have a direct impact on search rankings before long.
Google Analytics has always been a very useful tool when it comes to SEO. With Https, it becomes that much more useful. The reason for this is because the security data from referral sources is saved rather than it simply appearing as direct traffic the way it does with Http. This allows you to view and analyze your website traffic and statistics in much more detail!
Privacy and Security
Https simply serves as an online security system helping you and your users feel safer. It helps you avoid data theft and monetary damages that may be associated with such theft in addition to any damage that to your site's reputation and authority.
So, How Do You Change from Http to Https?
If you are interested in making the jump from Http to Https, generally it's not overly difficult, but it DOES require some knowledge, experience ... or a professional. Here's how to do it:
- Buy an SSL Certificate. There are 3 different types of SSL certificates to choose from - Standard, Extended Validation and Wildcard.
- Install the Certificate on your website's primary hosting account.
- Check your links because any URL that isn't updated to Https from Http will break following the migration.
- Inform Google as well as other search engines of the change. You can do this with 301 redirects from your Http site to the Https site. This will also ensure that users who have your Http website bookmarked will automatically be redirected to your new Https website once the migration has been completed.
The above are just the basics regarding Http vs. Https and what it means for your SEO. If you would like more information, feel free to reach out to us here at WebDetail and we would be happy to discuss the change in more detail. Alternatively, if you know you're ready to make the switch and would prefer an expert do it for you, we can handle that too, so give us a call.