Converting Your Website from HTTP to HTTPS for SEO
27 Feb 2023
News, Website Development, Marketing
Google has been pushing for all websites to move to “https” communications (sometimes referred to as SSL) so that the web is safer to browse. Having an https connection will protect your data and your website visitors. Because Google rewards safe website practices, your website must adopt them to ensure effective SEO.
Many contemporary web hosting services configure https by installing an SSL and redirecting traffic for you (transferring visitors from an http to https). However, this doesn’t necessarily mean your website will automatically conform to best practices. You should be aware of several key factors that are not the responsibility of your web host to manage.
Because video, images, and other media are also essential to your SEO efforts, it’s crucial to understand that parts of your website may be using http addresses. Even if your website converts traffic to https, these media elements still might use the non-secure address. They may no longer even appear on your web page or can be removed from Google’s search page results in some cases.
When your website is converted to https, it is also essential to ensure your links are updated because they may still point to http addresses. Relying on your host to set up redirects from http to https doesn’t mean the job is done. The links may still appear to work, but redirected links complicate communication and slow traffic. Ultimately, it is not the job of a web host to fix your links, so be sure not to let these details fall through the cracks.
Available Options for https
There are many solutions to make switching to https more accessible and beneficial to smaller businesses, from free certificates that automatically renew to credentials that give visitors more confidence in websites that collect sensitive information or payment details.
"Having SSL security used to be a necessary practice only for those websites dealing in sensitive information, but with the increased sophistication of hackers today, it's now a necessity just to prove you have a legitimate site," said Aaron Brossoit, Chief Executive Officer for Golden Shovel Agency.
Here are just a few options to discuss with your web host:
#1 Less expensive issuers can provide longer chain, basic SSL certificates from reputable names, giving cost-conscious businesses access to brands that instill trust without breaking the bank.
#2 Extended Validation (EV) SSL certificates assure visitors that your business is valid, while basic SSL certificates only guarantee that your domain is valid. This is an important distinction when dealing with sensitive information.
#3 Services like OpenSSL or Let’s Encrypt offer free, basic SSL certificates. These can even be set up to automatically renew instead of expiring.
#4 If you’re self-hosting, control panels like cPanel offer automatic, basic SSL certificates from brands such as Sectigo.
#5 Short-chain certificates from premium issuers such as Digicert speed up communication with your website compared to certificates with longer chains. Website speed is another factor that Google rewards.
Golden Shovel Agency Can Properly Move Your Website to https
Golden Shovel Agency can transfer your http website to an https, all while ensuring that no valuable data, content, or SEO juice is lost in the process. We provide economic development companies with award-winning websites that are safe and easy to navigate while piquing the interest of relevant communities and organizations. Contact us today so we can help set up your economic development website for success!
About the Author
Connect with Caitlin on LinkedIn
Caitlin Renton is a Copywriter for Golden Shovel Agency. She has several years of experience with reporting for news sources and writing content for various company websites. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Oakland University in Michigan.