Every time you visit a website, there are certain protocols in place to facilitate the interaction between your activity on the site and the web server. In fact, those protocols are hidden in plain sight and are generally visible at the beginning of most URLs. If you look at the address bar at the top of your browser, you may see either HTTP or HTTPS at the beginning of the web address. More and more, websites are being encrypted using HTTPS protocols, a significant fact if you’re trying to increase traffic to your website.
Defining the Terms
But what is HTTPS and why is it so significant? To begin with, HTTP stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol and, as mentioned, it is a language that helps transfer information from the website to the server. HTTPS denotes the exact same thing, except in this case there are security measures attached to the protocol to help keep the transferred data safe from potential onlookers. By adding an SSL/TSL (or Secure Sockets Layer/Transport Layer Security) protocol to the equation, your HTTP website becomes a safe-to-use HTTPS website.
What Does Secure Mean?
But what exactly does safe mean? There are three basic types of security that HTTPS offers. For starters, by encrypting the data, HTTPS ensures that other users are not allowed to spy on interactions between the site and the server. This is incredibly important for consumers making purchases online or those sending information to your business through a web form. Without HTTPS protection, another user may intercept data such as credit card information or social security numbers.
Secondly, HTTPS secures the integrity of the information being sent. This means all data sent from the site to the server is virtually incorruptible. Lastly, this type of security ensures that users are linked to the site they intended to visit – this is known as authentication. These three layers of protection are key to providing security to users on your site. With Google leading the charge, HTTPS will soon be the only game in town.
At this point, converting your website to HTTPS is essential if you want to attract users. In fact, according to Google, Chrome desktop users are spending two-thirds of their time on HTTPS websites and over half the websites loaded by web-surfers are secured with this type of encryption. This may be due to the fact that Chrome notifies users when they are on an unsecured (HTTP) website that contains password or credit card fields. Starting in October, Chrome will provide a “not secure” notification when a user is on an HTTP site in “incognito mode” and when a user enters data on an unsecured website.
Since 2014, Google has been ramping up its support for HTTPS, first calling for “HTTPS Everywhere” and then adding HTTPS to its list of ranking signals. This means converting your site to HTTPS will positively affect your site’s Google hits.
Moreover, according to Global Sign, 84 percent of users say they wouldn’t pursue a financial transaction on a website lacking HTTPS encryption. And this isn’t just a small minority of specialists. Seventy-five percent of users say they’re cognizant of security issues whenever they’re on a website.
In short, HTTPS is becoming a priority as Google continues to pressure companies into using this type of encryption. Additionally, HTTPS provides comfort to users seeking a secure experience online. At this point, it’s probably a good idea to jump on the bandwagon and start converting your sites to HTTPS. Not only will this help boost traffic to your site; it will also help build trust with present and future users.
Are You Ready to Convert Your Site to HTTPS?
Call us today if you would like to upgrade your site to HTTPS? We can do it at the same time we provide you with a mobile responsive design so you not only offer visitors a secure experience, but also a mobile friendly one.