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Your website needs an SSL next year. Google insists

Paul Green Content, websites & social media

One of the things that has empowered the internet-heavy world we have today is implicit trust in the browsers we use.

If you remember how risky it felt buying flights online in 1998, you’ll know what I mean. Today we press a few buttons on our phones and don’t think about it.

In 2017, your website must have an SSL certificate installed. Meaning it says https:// in the browser bar.

Why? Because Google has decided that’s important. And with 55% of the browser market (at time of writing), Google gets to lead issues such as this.

It’s going to start a series of changes to Chrome in January to flag up sites without https://.

At the moment, if you have a non secure page, you get the little exclamation mark. For some pages from January 2017, they will add the words “Not secure”. Like this (images from the Google blog):

Why you require an SSL Certificate?

That’s not great. Purely because the average decision maker who is looking at your website is highly uneducated about issues of web security. They don’t know what they don’t know. So when they see words like “not secure”, it will affect them emotionally. Which will make just them click the back button.

There is some good news. Chrome will only start doing this in January for unsecured pages that collect passwords or credit card data.

But it’s the start of a long-term plan to do it for every single non-https:// page on the web. Eventually, they’ll have a warning, like this:

Why you require an SSL Certificate?

YUK!

So why not get started on this now. Adding an SSL is really easy, and pretty low cost too.

I had it done on my website last week. My host had a solution for £25 a year. If not, this would have been a very cost effective way to do it.

Side note 1)

Just because you are a technical genius, don’t add this to your personal list of things to do. Remember the secret to getting things done is the acronym DOA.

Not Dead On Arrival. But Delegate, Outsource, Automate. You personally don’t have to do this. Get your web person to do it. Or pay your host to do it. Or delegate it to a member of your team.

As the business owner, you have more important things to do. Like lead the team to grow the business and double profits next year.

Side note 2)

While you’re getting this done, perhaps it’s a good time to take an objective view of your website, and assess how effective it is at turning web traffic into leads, and new clients.

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