Ever wonder what the http:// before your website URL actually means? Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is the application that your site uses to communicate with other computers via the Internet. It also defines how messages are transmitted and how web servers (your site) and browsers (people visiting your site) should respond to various commands.
In an effort to create a more secure Internet, Google is recommending that all sites migrate from their current HTTP sites to HTTPS. This stands for Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) and means that all communication between a browser and the website are securely encrypted. This change offers major benefits to your website:
A More User-Friendly Experience
Google used to rank web pages by keyword counts but has recognized that this isn’t necessarily a good way to show people the internet. Now their rankings are based on user benefits, and the HTTPS application provides many benefits to browsers, making sites using HTTPS look better to Google’s bots.
Faster Page Load Times
The Internet is growing and changing rapidly. On a fundamental level, many web hosting providers and content delivery networks are implementing HTTP/2, or a newer version of the HTTP protocol. This new protocol is adapted from a program originally developed by Google and improves how web pages are optimized and loaded. Web page load times may be up to 70% faster when using HTTP/2. That being said, only sites that have already migrated to the secure HTTPS will benefit from the faster speeds of HTTP/2.
Better Google Rankings
As mentioned above, the days of stuffing a website with a keyword in order to boost the site to the top of Google’s rankings are over. Google announced in late 2015 that it would begin to index sites with the HTTPS protocol over the HTTP protocol when possible. If your site isn’t running HTTPS, some data may be transferred incorrectly, causing images, text or other web elements to appear differently than you intended.
If you’ve been looking for a way to increase your Google index ranking, migrating to HTTPS is a simple place to start. And while it may sound complicated, your site will only benefit from your effort.
HTTPs is very important in terms of security, especially where sensitive information is concerned. If you run an eCommerce site or are processing credit card data, having the encryption security that HTTPS offers will only benefit you and your customers.
There are three layers of security that an HTTPS site offers to browsers:
- Encryption: By encrypting data as it is exchanged across the Internet, nobody can track a user’s activity online or “eavesdrop” on their browsing history. Encrypted data also prevents hackers from stealing information from a user.
- Data Integrity: HTTPS sites cannot have transferred data modified without their knowledge.
- Authentication: This layer of security proves that users are interacting with the website they intended to. This helps prevent hackers from “jumping in” when they see a hole in a security protocol and directing a user from one website to another. This security builds user trust.
HTTPS sites show a padlock icon in the address bar to let browsers know they are using a secure site. Many users may begin to look for this padlock symbol and be wary of your site if you do not have one.
Google has provided a guide of how to migrate to HTTPS. You can click here to view their guide, which lays out these basic steps to update your site to a secure protocol.
Want to learn more? Contact Divahound today!
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