Keeping Data Secure with an SSL Certificate

What is an SSL Certificate?

An SSL Certificate keeps your data secure by encrypting communications between a website and an internet browser. It’s what gives your users a clear indication of how secure any given website is. Whether you run a website for business purposes or not, encouraging people to engage with your content, or even make a purchase online, means ensuring they feel confident that their data is being properly protected. Research has shown that the majority of online shoppers will leave a website if they realise that the website isn’t secure.

These days, with such an overwhelming percentage of shopping being carried out online, it is no surprise that steps must be taken to heighten the security surrounding online purchases. So, while this is of concern to almost anybody with a website, it is particularly pertinent for those running e-commerce sites, due to the need for customers to submit sensitive data such as credit card and address details. But surprisingly, there is more to it than the customers’ safety; not only will an SSL Certificate give people the confidence to browse your website and submit details their details, but Google actually favours sites that are secure. Back in 2014, Google announced that by installing an SSL Certificate, you could see a boost in your rankings.


Installing an SSL Certificate

You can obtain and install an SSL Certificate from many different sources, all of which range in price and reliability. Therefore, it’s best to ensure that you do your research before committing yourself to a given provider. While it is possible to acquire a free SSL Certificate, in general, it’s best to opt for a trusted, commercial CA (Certificate Authority), such as GoDaddy or RapidSSL. The installation steps vary as they are dependent on your site hosting and the specifics of the SSL Certificate you acquired; this is where it pays to obtain your certificate from a trusted source, where you can get help throughout the entire process.


How Do You Know if a Site is Secure?

Whether you’re checking your own site or somebody else’s, once you know what to look for, it’s incredibly easy to establish the security of any given page. Here’s how:


  • Most websites display a small padlock next to the URL
  • When a website is using a maximum security SSL certificate, the browser bar will turn green and show the site’s credentials
  • If a page is secure, the URL will start with https:// instead of http://


The best part? More often than not, the process is simple, quick and above all, effective. Ultimately, if you want people to use your website, they need to feel safe doing so. And by obtaining and installing an SSL Certificate, both you and your website’s users can rest easy.