In July 2018, Google will begin to label non-HTTPS websites as “not secure” in their Chrome browser (currently the most popular web browser). Migrating to HTTPS involves installing an SSL (secure socket layers) certificate so that information passed to and from your web server is encrypted, giving visitors a safer online experience.
Google has been encouraging websites to make the move for many years, including providing a rankings boost for secure sites. The effort involved to complete the change over will depend on the size and functionality of the website but will generally follow a process as outlined below:
- The website should be hosted with a dedicated IP address
- Buy an SSL certificate
- Activate the SSL certificate
- Install the SSL certificate
- Update your site to use HTTPS (including redirecting any old URLs)
For added assurance, businesses should consider using an Extended Validation SSL Certificate (EV SSL) to display a green address bar with their company name. An EV SSL certificate is more expensive and will take longer to be issued and installed, but will instil greater confidence in visitors. The benefits of an EV SSL will provide a stark contrast with websites marked as “not secure” following Google’s update.
- Must follow strict guidelines enforced by the CA/Browser Forum
- Acts as confirmation of the physical, legal, and operational addresses of the company that owns the website
- Acts as confirmation that the organisation that requested the certificate has been officially authorised
- Assures that records relating to business licensing and company incorporation information have been verified
- Gives proof of exclusive rights to use the domain name
Example of EV SSL on Qdos Accounting
While an EV SSL is not required to avoid Google’s “not secure” label, it would provide a differentiating factor that’s easily identifiable for customers, leading to an improved website experience and contributing to better conversion rates.
We have always recommended our clients use an SSL certificate for the added security benefits and we’re well-versed in migrating websites to HTTPS (using a standard SSL certificate or an EV SSL certificate). If you’re interested in moving to HTTPS to avoid the “not secure” label being added to your site, an SSL is just an additional £5pm on top of your existing Herdl hosting plan. If you have any queries, please contact our team.