Google’s New Policy
In October of 2017 Google started rolling out (on a limited basis) a new algorithm detecting websites without SSL or HTTPS certification and began injecting a warning message like the one on the left when website visitors arrived at some of those websites. The rollout will continue through 2018 and become a de facto standard by the end of the year.
Unless you have a valid SSL certificate installed on your website, it’s likely that Google will soon point out that your website is unsafe.
Today, only a little over 1% of the millions of websites active online are labeled as safe. Although not all websites need extra layers of security, certain types of businesses need to up their game, according to Google’s new unsafe website warning.
Whether you run a small business or a well-established brand, the safety of your customers’ data becomes a priority. Selling your products or services online or even collecting sensitive information such as phone numbers or names, puts your customers’ privacy at risk.
If you were wondering why Google decided to play the ‘unsafe’ card, here are a few interesting web security facts every business owner ought to know.
Why is Google saying my website is unsafe?
Your website loads quickly. The search engines have noticed you. So why does Google keep saying your website is unsafe? The lack of a secure connection is the main reason why your website could be seen as a threat. Although you’re not a hacker waiting to ‘nail’ their next victim, not fully protecting your data and your clients’ information could result in a security breach.
Creepy web crawlers, bots and phishing attacks could affect any website at any given time. Just because you’re running a small business, doesn’t mean your small website will be spared in case of an attack. With people nowadays trusting companies to keep their data safe, not having an SSL certificate installed could put your customers’ privacy at risk.
Online shopping implies entering sensitive information, such as your customer’s name and credit card data. Who wants to risk having such important information stolen with just a few clicks? This is why Google has decided to play rough. Unless you can prove you’re able to protect your customers, your website will probably be marked as unsafe.
How can I avoid Google’s unsafe website warning?
Many webmasters today skip the effort and cost of implementing an SSL certificate. Although identity thefts and sensitive information being leaked are not uncommon, businesses either avoid switching to HTTPS on purpose or the business owner is simply unaware of the risks.
One thing is for sure though. In order to avoid Google calling your website not secure, all you need to do is implement an encrypted certificate. By redirecting to HTTPS, you’re not only telling Google your website is safe, but you’re letting your customers know they can trust you as well.
And this is where SmartWeb Costa Rica can help you.
Click here to download our 35 page report, “Everything You Need to Know About SSL”
Having a secure means of transmitting encrypted information between your clients and your server is crucial if you need your clients to trust your brand. By shielding your website and customers from fraud, you’re solving two problems at once. Google will stop ‘harassing’ your website and customers will gain trust in your business and brand.
What are the dangers of not having an SSL certificate installed?
Although not all websites need to install a Secure Socket Layer certificate, small business owners who collect data from their clients could benefit a great deal from adding an extra layer of protection. Here are the main dangers of avoiding doing so, though:
- Google will mark your website as unsafe. Although your website will still be accessible, visitors being warned about an unsecure connection will most likely leave.
- Clients will trust your brand less. Speaking of trust, the lack of a secure encrypted connection could influence your clients in a negative way. People like to feel safe when they browse the online. And if your websites doesn’t offer a sense of security, your visitors will most likely think your brand is not to be trusted.
- You’ll lose customers to your competition. Turning visitors away and having them think you’re not a trustworthy business results in you losing your clients to your competition. Every visitor on your website is there for a reason. But if they can’t trust you, they’re going to find what they need somewhere else.
- Google will favor indexing safe websites. Although you shouldn’t expect a serious boost in rankings, Google has expressed the intention of favoring the indexation of websites that help the online become a safer place. You could lose your credibility as a business.
Your website and your brand act as your business card online. As a small company owner, turning customers away is the last thing you want to do! If you’re storing credit card information or other sensitive data, it’s best to let your customers know your website is safe and can be trusted.
SmartWeb offers website owners complete HTTPS security through the installation of an SSL Certificate. The cost is just $59 for the first year and $29 for subsequent annual renewals.
Contact SmartWeb Costa Rica today to learn how we can secure your website with an SSL Certificate.