With Google considering HTTPS an important factor your ranking boost, the time has come to make a switch for your website: from HTTP to HTTPS, considering the benefits it will have on SEO
What is so different in this – just an additional ‘s’. But this additional ‘s’ is something that adds security to your website, as the name stands for ‘Secure Hyper Text Transfer Protocol‘ (HTTPS).
There might be a few more questions you might have –
What the difference is between HTTP and HTTPS? How to make the switch, and if making the switch is right for your company in the first place? Why does Google prefer HTTPS for SEO rankings? What are the SEO benefits of HTTPS?
Lets have a look at each point –
Differentiating HTTP and HTTPS
HTTP was basically used to setup the websites who did not house confidential information as it was mostly used to access HTML pages, and it is essential to consider that other resources can be utilized through accessing HTTP.
HTTPS was developed to ensure authorization and exchange of confidential information in a secure manner to prevent unauthorized access.
HTTP and HTTPS are identical in many ways as they follow the same basic protocol, the difference being HTTPS offering an extra layer of security by using SSL to move data.
Switching to HTTPS and is it really necessary for your website
This really isn’t that difficult. In most cases, if you purchase SSL certificate from your hosting provider, they will help you install it. You can always contact their support to assist you.
The necessity of installing it lies in the fact that if you are looking to stay in Google’s good books for a long time, you need to secure your website because Google loves security!
SEO benefits of HTTPS
If you noticed, from January 2017 Chrome has started adding a green padlock and ‘Secure’ written before the URL of the website in the address bar if the website is HTTPS. This just gives an additional boost to the customers to trust the websites they are browsing are secure enough. As of Jan 2017, Chrome has about 57.7% of users of the overall industry. So, if your site does not have the trusted stamp from Google Chrome, you are already losing out on more than half of the web browsing population directly.
HTTPS includes security for your SEO objectives and site by preventing tampering by third parties and making the site more secure for visitors. The encryption in the communication and URLs protects the transaction and browsing histories.
Many people are of the opinion that HTTPS offers protection only to websites using sensitive passwords. This is not valid. Indeed, even regular content sites benefit from SSL encryption. It confirms the site is the one the Web server should be conversing with.
4. Increased Rankings
This is very obvious as it was confirmed by Google back in 2014 the slight ranking boost of HTTPS sites. So webmasters and SEOs need to keep this point in mind, though it may not be a major rank boosting signal to be isolated on its own, but HTTPS definitely gives an edge in ranking over HTTP.
5. Referrer Data
An important point to determine where your traffic is coming from. On an HTTP site, the traffic coming through will seem like “direct” traffic whereas, on an HTTPS site, the traffic coming in will be saved as referral traffic in your analytics report.
You truly shouldn’t be worried about switching from HTTP to HTTPS as far as SEO is concerned. Google has been advising web admins it is safe to do so for years now. However, you need to make sure to communicate to Google that you moved your site from HTTP to HTTPS. You can check the best practices to follow when switching to https here.
If you want your SEO to be strong, want to avoid losing sales from the digital media and make browsing safe, it’s very much clear why we should switch to HTTPS for our websites.
So let us all join hands with Google in its #NoHacked campaign and help to make this web a safe space to browse.