If you own your own website, you probably spend a significant amount of time and money in an attempt to increase website traffic. This is especially true if you are involved in internet marketing or run an e-commerce store. Even if your site is only a blog, you still want people to visit. Otherwise, what is the point of having a site? The last thing you need is for Google to flag your site as “Not Secure.” Such an action could have a dramatic effect on the amount of web traffic that your site receives.
Sharing Personal Information
The problem that Google is trying to solve is the sharing of personal information, which has become commonplace. You may even be asking your own visitors to share their personal information with you. Perhaps you offer them an incentive in exchange for their email address. If you want them to open an account, it is likely that you require an email address and password. If you run an e-commerce store and make a sale, you probably ask your customers for all of the above plus their mailing address and credit card information. Some sites even ask visitors for their Social Security numbers.
Indicators of a Safe Site
How, then, can a person know whether a website is safe? The easiest way to find out is to look at the website’s address bar. It should begin with “HTTPS” rather than “HTTP.” HTTP stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol, the standard that has been used for some time to establish communications between a web browser and a server. Adding an extra “s” to make it HTTPS means that the website connection is secure because the site is using an SSL certificate.
What is an SSL Certificate?
If your website uses SSL certification, an encrypted connection is established between your customer’s web browser and your server. Consequently, any personal information that your customer sends to you is secure because it cannot be viewed by third parties.
How Can You Make Your Site Safe?
To avoid being flagged as “Not Secure” by Google, you will need to make sure that your website is safe by encrypting it. Failure to do so could mean that you will not have access to a number of Google Chrome features, such as geolocation and push notifications. You will also not be able to ask your customers for credit card information if your website is branded as unsafe.
It will be up to you or your web developer to make the changes necessary to convert your site to a secure version. This will require that you obtain an SSL Certificate from a certifying authority. However, just having an SSL Certificate installed doesn’t mean that your website is going to automatically load securely via HTTPS. You have to manually edit your web pages and databases to pull all content via HTTPS rather than HTTP and then redirect all traffic to HTTPS and ensure that all pages are loading correctly.
Because I’m not very good with the technical side of how websites work, I asked my hosting company, D9 Hosting, to do everything for me.
The following video by Paula Brett, co-owner of D9 Hosting, very effectively describes how to make your website secure and how D9 will be able to help you:
I hope this post will help you in getting your website compliant with the Google SSL requirements. If you would like the team at D9 Hosting to do all the technical stuff for you and save you a lot of time, effort and stress, you can reach them here.