What is HTTPS?
Why Use HTTPS?
- When an HTTPS site links to your HTTP site, traffic from that link is listed as direct traffic because the unsecure connection strips referral data from the traffic. If your site runs HTTPS as well, you maintain that referral traffic.
- HTTPS is a minor ranking signal in the Google algorithm. But heed the word minor, because it probably won't effect your rankings at all. And probably modestly at best.
- HTTPS also has a benefit to security and user comfort. When a user knows their data is secure, they’re going to trust your site a little more.
- Does your site sit on one domain or on multiple domains? A site using multiple domains will need a multiple domain certificate, which will be more expensive. This also applies to website owners who want to secure several different sites hosted on the same server.
- Does your site use subdomains? You can purchase a wildcard certificate, which will allow you to cover each subdomain under the main domain’s security.
- Are you going to secure the entire website or just a few critical pages? Pretty much every site that uses an online storefront will be using SSL for, at the very least, their purchase pages. If you have user accounts or logins of any type, you should have SSL on those pages.
Should you implement HTTPS?
- It’s hard to know which certificates you need for your site, between a single, multiple domain or wildcard option.
- It’s easy to opt for less secure certificates and provide questionable value to your users.
- You will need to redirect or change links internally.
- HTTPS requires security handshakes, which can slow down your site.
- HTTPS can restrict the CDNs you use to host scripts and content off-site.
- SSL certificates are not cheap for small businesses.
- You essentially need to migrate your site to a new secure URL, with all of the danger that entails.
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