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Why you should switch your website from HTTP to HTTPS

Posted on 16th January, 2018 by Chris Stott

Web Development

For a number of years now HTTPS has been used by search engines such as Google as a ranking factor, albeit a minor one. Making the change to HTTPS is also a great way to improve the security of your website and build more trust in your brand. If you’re still not convinced then these are the reasons why you should make the switch today.

Reasons to make the switch

One of the most important reasons to make the switch to HTPPS is to do with security and the protection that it offers for both your business and your customers. Browsers such as Google Chrome are planning to mark websites that collect any data as insecure unless they use HTTPS so it will soon become a necessity for all types of websites, not just ecommerce shops.

The data sent using HTTPS is secured via Transport Layer Security (TLC) which offers the following protection:

Encryption

Encrypting the exchanged data to keep it secure from eavesdroppers. That means that while the user is browsing a website, nobody can “listen” to their conversations, track their activities across multiple pages, or steal their information.

Data integrity

Data cannot be modified or corrupted during transfer, intentionally or otherwise, without being detected.

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Authentication

Proves that your users communicate with the intended website. It protects against man-in-the-middle attacks and builds user trust, which translates into other business benefits.

SEO

Currently, there is a small ranking boost for making the switch to HTTPS as this is used as a ranking signal. But as adoption becomes more widespread we’d expect to see the rankings increases become more substantial.

Credibility

Trust is a big reason to make the move from HTTP to HTTPS as users are more likely to provide information if they think your website is secure. It has been proven in many studies and surveys that websites that are secure and show the green padlock symbol are trusted by customers.

Referral data

One of the quirks of analytics software such as Google Analytics is that HTTPS to HTTP referral data is blocked. This means that if you’ve got a big site that uses the HTTPS protocol which is sending a lot of traffic to your site you won’t be able to see this data in your analytics. This traffic would show up as direct traffic meaning that the reporting won’t be accurate and you could be missing opportunities for building your referral traffic.

Conclusion

Even if your website doesn’t handle sensitive user information it still makes sense making the switch to HTTPS. And with prices for security certificates coming down in price; upgrading your website doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

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