Secure sockets layer (SSL) is a type of security that protects customer names, phone numbers, addresses, credit card numbers and other sensitive data. It’s very important if you deal with anything to do with customer data. It’s also becoming important for SEO now that Google is using it for ranking purposes.
- It Improves SEO – When Google wants you to have it, you should pay attention. That means they’ve determined that they’re going to rank your site better if you have SSL. Even if you don’t deal with that much or any customer data because your site is for informational purposes, it will still improve your site’s search engine results.
- It Makes Consumers Feel Safe – When your site is secure and they know it’s secure, they’re going to be much more likely to make a purchase on your site than if you didn’t have it. Customers are becoming savvier, so it’s important that you upgrade your site to have SSL.
- Ensures Credit Card Compliance – You can’t take credit cards via authorize.net unless you have your own SSL. You can use PayPal and Stripe without it, but as you get more business you’ll likely want to have your own authorize.net account so that you can give your customers more options.
- It’s Going to Be a Government Requirement Eventually – There are many rumors about the potential for this to be a rule for any website that collects any sort of user data and asks for payment for anything. You might as well set it up now or with any new sites you build to ensure that it works well.
- It Keeps Information Safe – SSL encrypts so that only those who are supposed to get the information can read it. It specifically encodes private information so that other people can’t access and get that information and use it criminally.
- It Provides Authentication – When you get an SSL, it gives a layer of authentication. Customers can view the documents to validate that you are who you say you are. This gives them reassurance.
- Protects Against Phishing – What phishers do is find a way to trick customers into going to a fake site where they get the users' information and use it illegally. Sometimes they trick users with pretending shipping info or other ways to get the information, and you can protect them with this simple addition.
- Will Improve Your Brand Image – One thing is for sure; having SLL certificates can make your site look a step above sites without it. This is especially true if you can get a site seal that shows you have trusted security on your website.
Moving to SSL can be accomplished by talking to your hosting or your website support. You’ll need to update some links and that type of thing, but it should not affect much about your site other than to make it more secure for your users and yourself, and more findable for prospective customers.