As you may have heard, Google is getting strict with creating a secure internet for everyone. For a while now, Google has started to prefer HTTPS over HTTP and it is a ranking factor for website now (it may not be the biggest, but it is a point to consider). With the latest Google Chrome 68, things are getting even more ‘anti-http’.
Chrome 68 is against HTTP
Chrome 68 was launched on July 24th 2018. With it’s launch came new issues for website developers and owners that have not yet made the change to SSL. Secure internet browsing is a big feature of Google chrome, and with this launch, any websites that don’t have an SSL and HTTPS setup correctly will not just get a ‘gray padlock’ or ‘broken padlock’, but instead the website will show the words “Not Secure” to all visitors.
To enforce this even further, in October 2018, Google plans to change this to RED writing of “Not Secure” if your website is not on HTTPS. This will grab visitors attention even more and lower confidence, particularly if you sell items and your visitors need to give any personal or financial information.
However, switching to HTTPS is quite a good idea for most businesses. Although you will likely need to hire a developer/SEO expert to help you, with recent GDPR laws for anyone selling to residents of the UK and Europe, laws concerning internet security and privacy are getting stricter by the year. So, why wait? We provide free SSL with all accounts (3 monthly cPanel certificate that also automatically renews – just put https before your website to check) and have many other SSL certificate options in our client area. Most of our SSL certificates will verify the website ownership and install on our server automatically, especially when for the main domain of a hosting account (sub-domains, add-on domains etc. may require clients to manually setup the certificate). If your hosting is not with us, then manual SSL installation will be required.
HTTP to HTTPS Warning
However, although our system is easy to use, if your website is established and ranking, before you change to HTTPS please consult with an SEO expert. Changing your domain from HTTP to HTTPS can affect your position in search results of search engines like Google and Bing (SERPs) and reduce your visitors/customers. If not setup correctly, the website can stop working properly or even completely. Also, wrong theme settings, images etc. can cause the website to show a broken padlock in internet browsers when these areas are set to use HTTP and the website has changed to HTTPS. There are some plugins for WordPress websites to change easily to HTTPS, but we highly recommend that you consult with an SEO expert if your website is your business and is already established online (meaning that it shows in search engine results and is getting visitors regularly without promotion). Please do some research before making the change.
Good luck to all with the change over, we hope that it will go smoothly for you.