Are you looking to launch an e-commerce website and want to secure it for payments? Does your website require the ability to submit confidential information? Or are you just hoping to secure you website for any future needs that may come along? No matter your reasoning, taking your website from HTTP to HTTPS with the purchase of an SSL certificate is a smart move. However, before we recommend this switch across the board, you should familiarize yourself with the pros and cons of going HTTPS.
Pros to Making the Switch
1. Protects Sensitive Information
The most obvious reason for purchasing a digital certificate and securing your website is to protect sensitive and confidential information such as credit card information, social security numbers, medical data, and addresses, just to name a few. If you have an e-commerce website or store files with confidential information on-site, you must purchase a digital certificate. Doing so will protect this information from hackers and let your customers know that their data is safe.
2. Receives a Ranking Boost in Search Results
Having an HTTPS URL gives you a minor ranking boost from Google. In August of 2014, Google announced that adding an SSL 2048-bit key certificate on your site will earn it a ranking benefit, albeit a very small one (Search Engine Land). If you want to improve your search engine optimization, going HTTPS is one way to do so. However, since it is such a small ranking factor, you should definitely prioritize improving content, site structure, and links first.
Cons to Making the Switch
1. May Slow Down Load Time
Even though switching to HTTPS will give your website a slight ranking boost, it can negatively affect your site load time. When your website contains a digital certificate, an extra step of secure verification is added to the process. Therefore, your website may take an extra second to load. If you are only switching to HTTPS to improve your search rankings, there may be more productive ways to do so. Instead of purchasing a digital certificate that may slow down your site load time, focus on improving your website content.
2. Costs Money to Purchase an SSL Certificate
While the cost is not anything outrageous, you should be aware that an SSL certificate is not free. If you are at all concerned about money and you do not have a legitimate reason to purchase a secure certificate other than to improve SEO, we recommend that you hold off until it is completely necessary.
We hope this blog will help you to decide if HTTPS is right for you. If you need assistance with making that decision or purchasing a digital certificate, please contact Informatics Inc.