Safe and secure
Keeping your website secure protects visitors while improving your rank in the search engines.
A new report breaks almost every day about an online security breach that has leaked access to usernames, credit cards and all kinds of other private information. Encryption can help prevent this and it’s critical if you take credit cards or other forms of payment on your website.
Anything with a username, password, or form can benefit from encryption. Even without these things, encrypting your site can improve it’s rank in the search engines almost immediately.
What is encryption?
Encryption keeps information secure. Without it, all text can be accessed, even if it’s hidden or masked on your screen. Encryption involves adding an SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer, which provides an extra layer of armor around your site, protecting you and your visitors from third-party snoopers, spammers, hackers and phishers.
What does encryption do?
The three layers of protection offered by a secure website are: 1) Protect user activity by keep browsing information private and data secure. 2) Thwart corruption or modification of files being transferred to or from the website. 3) Insulate against third-party attacks by confirming the (IP) identity of visitors.
Benefits for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
In addition to the protections offered by a secure website, encryption is also an SEO best practice.
Speed — Secure sites load more quickly than non-secure sites. A faster load time improves clickthrough rates from paid and organic searches. If your site takes too long to load, the back button is just a click away and impatient visitors are more likely to bail.
Trust — Visitors who trust your site are more likely to browse longer. With secure sites becoming the norm, some users are becoming aware of and sensitive to insecure sites.
Google wants it — Since July 2018 with the release of Chrome 68, Non-HTTPS sites are now labeled as “Not Secure”, in effect shaming websites that are not secure. Google has since factored security into their algorithm and websites that are not secure are likely to suffer a drop in natural/organic rank.
Google first announced their plan to reward secure sites and demote non-secure sites on its blog in 2014, saying it would start with a relatively small test. The blog stated, “Over time, we may decide to strengthen it, because we’d like to encourage all website owners to switch from HTTP to HTTPS to keep everyone safe on the web.” A year later, Google officials said HTTPS sites would serve as a tiebreaker between two otherwise equal site rankings.
Google has since reported that more than 70% of sites are now secure. A recent survey showed that between 80% and 85% of users would abandon purchases from sites that are not encrypted, and 82% of the surveyed group said they won’t browse non-secure websites.
If you would like a free evaluation of your website security, SEO performance and it’s ability to attract, engage and convert visitors, please contact us at 203-682-4585, email firstname.lastname@example.org or schedule an appointment to speak with one of our experts.