Back in the early days of the internet websites were a novelty. They had cool graphics and weird color schemes that caught the eye, but they had very little in the way of security. Now websites are a standard for businesses and security is a necessity if you want to deal with customers. There have been a lot of changes since the beginning, the most notable being a demand for secure websites.
It’s not enough to just have a website. Everyone has a website, but not everyone has a secure website. The amount of time I spend on the internet can be really staggering at times. Between research, school, work, shopping, and personal browsing it really adds up.
I see a lot of different kinds of websites every day but the ones that always stand out aren’t always the most put together, but rather the ones that are not secure. Google makes it pretty hard to miss when a website is not secure, they say it right in the address bar “Not Secure.”
But why? Why do they say it on the address bar, or on a search page? What’s the big deal if you don’t have a lock icon or an address that starts with Https? The S in http(s) stands for secure, same as the little lock icon you might have noticed while browsing. It’s there because that website has an SSL certificate.
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. It means that your communication with the website and it’s server is being encrypted so no one can “eavesdrop” on any personal information you might be sharing. It’s the difference between you giving your credit card number out verbally to a vendor in a room full of people who could write it down, or silently handing your card for them to swipe on a secure device.
So why wouldn’t you want that for your website? When it translates to the user that you have a website that is safe for them to not only browse but also interact with. Having an SSL means having credibility not only with consumers, but with web browsers too. Which can give you an SEO boost and a leg up on your competitors.
If you want people to look at your website and consider you a real option you need to follow the rules of the internet. You need a well designed website that is up to date, with fresh content coming in regularly. And you need to show them that their safety and security is on your mind by implementing an SSL. That is the only way your website is going to survive in the competitive jungle that is the search page.
There are always going to be bigger companies trying to take the coveted first results and conversions. But if you can’t manage to at least have a secure website you are not even in the game, you’re on the bench out of sight and mind. Give your business the best chance you can by being aware of the demands from consumers and search engines so that you can shine as brightly as you can.