In order to foster a safer and more secure web browsing experience for users, Google reported that it will start displaying a “Not Secure” message on websites that are not secured with SSL Certification. Starting in October 2017, any website that does not provide this certification will be unfavoured by Google, inevitably impacting rankings and conversion.
How to Tell if Your Website is Securely Encrypted
Simply go to your website and check to see if your address bar contains HTTP (not secure) or HTTPS (secure).
What it Means for Your Website
If your website is only HTTP, the opportunity is open for hackers to tap into the website’s data such as customer contact information and payment forms containing credit card numbers. If you are HTTPS, any form of interception is blocked by encrypting data that would otherwise be vulnerable.
What This Means for Lead Conversion & Rankings
Securing your website provides an extra layer of protection, activating a green lock right beside the address bar. Without HTTPS, Google will display a bright red “Not Secure” warning. This new update could increase customer’s apprehension when completing a purchase or filling out a contact form on your website. This “Not Secure” warning could also prompt other browser warning pages, drastically reducing your site’s traffic and conversion.
Securing your website can be used to increase your site’s search visibility. According to Bruce Clay, Google’s Gary Illyes stated that HTTPS can be seen as a “tiebreaker” for websites that are closely competing for the same ranking. This is great news for those that have been proactive in securing their website and prioritizing the privacy of their customers.
What You Can Do
If your website contains HTTP, we highly suggest that you contact your web professional to help set your website up with SSL certification before it starts affecting you and your customers.
If you need help setting up and implementing your secure SSL certificate, please contact Chris@gustinquon.com, and we will be happy to accommodate you.