With the release of Chrome version 56 on January 31, 2017, if your WordPress site is not using HTTPS with SSL, it will appear with a warning “Not Secure” in the address bar.
Does my WordPress Website need HTTPS/SSL?
As of January 31, 2016, only pages that are accepting credit cards and requesting passwords will see this error. This is part of Google’s effort to create a safer internet for sensitive information. Sensitive information refers to credit cards and passwords. A website that is requesting this information that doesn’t have HTTPS with SSL is leaving that information readable to malicious hackers.
If your site is requesting credit card information and/or passwords, you should definitely have HTTPS with SSL as soon as possible. As of January 31, 2017, any page on your site that is requesting such information will give visitors the message “Not Secure” on pages requesting such information.
Google Search Long Term Plan for non-HTTP/SSL Websites
Long term, Google will get more aggressive with this warning. Eventually, any site that does not have an HTTPS with an SSL certificate with the “Not Secure” warning across in their address bar as shown below.
Google hasn’t announced when this change will take place exactly, but it is expected to happen soon.
Google SEO and HTTPS/SSL on WordPress Websites
Google has been favoring WordPress websites that use https/ssl in their search rankings for a long time. This is part of their effort to create a safer internet, as well to send Google Search users to websites that use the best practices for protecting their users.
If you’re actively engaged in an SEO campaign for your website and aren’t currently using HTTP with SSL, you should make it a priority.
Other Benefits of HTTPS/SSL on WordPress Websites
Along with the ranking of your site, and the warning being added in the address bar in Google Chrome, there are other major benefits to using HTTP with SSL on any WordPress website.
- Look more legitimate – as HTTPS and SSL installation can be complex, traditionally only websites that are successful have the resources to install it. In the past, only thriving website used HTTPS. Installing HTTPS with SSL is a good way to give your customers the impression you are successful
- Prevent hacking – if you are using the typical wp-admin login pane, then every time you log in you are sending your username and password across the internet. If you’ve had hackers access your wp-admin account before, not having HTTPS installed may be how they got access to your password in the first place
- Prevent scamming – sometimes, free wifi sources such as at your local coffee shop can be hacked. The hacker could place fake images, ads, or even request private information from your customers right in your WordPress website. HTTPS with SSL prevent this from occurring
- Building trust – a WordPress website with HTTPS and SSL installed is a website you can trust, and you know that from the moment you land on the front page. If you’re looking to build trust in a brand, HTTPS and SSL is another great way to do it
How do I add HTTPS/SSL to my WordPress Website?
Although the process is quite technical, many generous bloggers have already created step by step very detailed guides to setting up HTTPS and SSL on your WordPress site.
Although there are plugins available that do this for you, we recommend staying away from such plugins. The reason being is plugins can be hacked, updated, or disabled. The move to HTTPS should be permanent and done correctly. We recommend using the steps provided in the guides below.
If you’re frustrated with the process and want someone to handle the setup and year to year renewal processes for HTTPS and SSL, you can see the service we provide for this and get a free estimate here:
Please visit these great guides below: