For an e-commerce website, an SSL certificate is not an option but a necessity.
If you don’t implement HTTPS and install SSL certificates, your visitors will see a ‘Not Secure’ warning on visiting your website.
Having a ‘Not Secure’ is not suitable for user experience, search engine optimization and user’s security.
Here you’ll learn about SSL and its use for your website.
What is an SSL certificate?
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is the standard security code to secure the communication between browser and server. It authenticates the identity of the website and enables an encrypted connection.
The encrypted connection ensures the data flowing between the web server and browser stay private and secure. Without an SSL certificate, the data will be sent and received in text format, which is not secure.
SSL Certificate has the following information:
- Name of the holder
- Serial number and expiration date
- Copy of the certificate holder’s public key
- Digital Signature of the certificate-issuing authority
How do SSL Certificates secure your website?
A user clicks on a link to the open website or enters the URL in the browser to open. The browser reads the URL, maps it to the nameserver, and finds the IP address.
The IP address provides the location of the hosting and database. The database contains the resources needed to open the webpage.
The webpage is made of code, images, videos and other web elements. All of it is stored in the database. When the user needs to open the webpage, the browser creates the connection through the internet and fetches the resources to open the webpage.
The request containing what to fetch is sent via HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol).
A typical HTTP request looks like this:
The response looks like this:
Where does SSL help?
The request-response cycle is not secure as anyone can attack the network and fetch the requests and responses.
The data packets are not encrypted, so they are in text format. So once they are downloaded by someone else, they can be opened and read as you can read this blog.
That’s where SSL certificates help.
Once the SSL is installed on the website, HTTPS replaces the HTTP. The data packets transferring from server to browser are in an encrypted format.
Even if someone fetches the packets in the middle of the transfer, they will be useless without the keys.
So, with SSL, the connection and data transfer became secure.
Importance of SSL certificates
Security is not the only reason to implement an SSL certificate.
Several reasons why an SSL certificate is vital for e-commerce websites:
#1 Payment Gateways
An SSL certificate is necessary if you are enabling a payment gateway on your website. The payment gateways do not allow their technology on insecure networks.
The credit companies have policies that the store has to be PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliant.
PCI compliant means that any company or organization that accepts, transmits, or stores the private data of cardholders is compliant with the various security measures outlined by the PCI Security Standard Council to ensure that the data is kept safe and private.
#2 User Security
Besides keeping your website secure, it is your responsibility to keep your user’s data safe. As you collect their data such as name, location, email address, company names etc.… It all gets stored in the database.
The browser fetches the information the same way as it fetches any webpage.
The internet council and many government bodies have made rules and regulations to secure the user’s data.
If you risk the user’s information by not following the standard security measures and someone hacks your website – you may end up paying a hefty fee for negligence.
#3 SEO Boost
In 2014, Google added the SSL certificates as a signal for SEO. It gives a slight advantage to the site loading on HTTPS.
Google wants its users to have a secure experience on the internet. So it does not want to show the insecure website in the SERP.
Having an SSL certificate does not give you a massive advantage in terms of SEO, but it is a ranking factor. And if you want to focus on SEO in a competitive space, you should not overlook it.
#4 Trust Factor
The majority of the browser shows a green lock at the URL when the site loads on the secure network. Google Chrome is the most used browser right now, and it displays a red lock and untrusted website symbol if the website is not on HTTPS.
Such mild signals send the wrong image of the website and reduce brand trust.
User experience plays a critical role in SEO and conversion.
You can use your market budget to attract users to the website, but if it is not secure, the browser will tell the users that it is unsafe to purchase anything from the website.
SSL: Free or Paid?
SSL certificates are available freely to make HTTPS accessible to everyone. Free SSL certificates have played a significant part in making the web secure, as with no cost, people don’t show much resistance to installing them.
Free SSL certificates are secure, and in the majority of website cases, they work perfectly. The free SSL certificate’s encryption is the same as the paid certificates.
However, some websites need a paid SSL certificate for more security.
Paid SSL certificates carry out the validation of the domain name and the business organization. In some cases, you might see organization names in URL lock – the paid SSL certificate doing the authentication at the organization level.
Finance websites like banks, loans, and E-commerce stores doing millions of daily transactions need paid certificates.
Another difference is the validity.
The validity of a Free SSL certificate is for 90 days, while paid SSL certificate can be issued for 2 years. But you can renew SSL certificates at no cost.
At Breeze, we automatically renew the certificate without any issue.
Add an SSL certificate to your store on Breeze.
Breeze provides unlimited SSL certificates with automated renewal. You can install the SSL certificate from Breeze and forget about it.
If your store is on Breeze, follow the steps to enable the Free SSL certificate:
- Login to your Breeze Panel
- Select the company you would like to work on
- Click on the ‘Sites’ to open the site list
- Open the ‘Store’ to enable Free SSL
- Go to ‘Domains’ from the options at Left
- Check the Domain list and find the domain
- Click on the Action, and Enable Lets Encrypt SSL Certificate
Finally, HTTP can work if you don’t collect information (name and email address at contact form count as data) on your blog. But it is not secure.
But for e-commerce stores, you cannot ignore HTTPS. With Breeze, you can implement SSL certificates in several steps.
Take a demo today, and experience all the features of the Breeze platform yourself.