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The importance of security – Have you taken this action to rank higher?

  • 16th June 201616/06/16
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As a business owner you’ll already know the importance ranking highly on Google holds, but have you ever thought about how the security of your site can potentially affect your rankings?

Google are working towards making everywhere on the web HTTPS. This extra level of security is encouraged by Google and they use strong HTTPS encryption by default themselves.

What is HTTPS?

Technical jargon can be confusing and, quite honestly, a bit scary but HTTPS is actually pleasantly straightforward. Put simply, it is a protocol for a secure connection.

What does that actually mean? If you see https:// at the start of the website address (think of sites such as Amazon and others that you may commonly buy things from) you will often see a little padlock next to it.  This basically indicates that the information passed between you and that website is encrypted and cannot be seen by anybody else.

This is particularly important if you’re giving information through a form, or perhaps making a purchase through a website.  Your data and website experience should be safer, which is why Google like it; they want to direct people to safe sites, free from malicious attacks, malware and alike.

So what has Google’s love for HTTPS got to do with you and your business?

Google have now introduced an indexing algorithm that ranks sites with HTTPS higher than those with HTTP. To put it simply, if your site is HTTPS you may be ranked higher on Google.

The purpose of this new algorithm is to work towards a safer internet; as we’ve already said, Google wants to make sure that “ the websites people access from Google are safe” – makes sense right?

Here it is from the horses mouth:

https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2014/08/https-as-ranking-signal.html

Why should you make the move?

Whilst switching to HTTPS won’t realistically see you make massive ranking increases it can make a small difference and help you on your way to the top. The value of switching is likely to increase over time as Google strengthens the signal of the indexing algorithm, meaning the benefits of having a HTTPS site will continue to grow.

What next?

In order to help you make the move, Google have released a useful step-by-step guide. It walks users through the do’s and don’ts of HTTPS; including preparation of the new site, moving the site, and monitoring the traffic.

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6033049?hl=en&ref_topic=6033084

Extra tips

Before you get started on your switch, take a look at these tips…

-       Have the right kind of certificate. Do you need single, multi-domain, or a wildcard certificate?

-       Use 2048-bit key certificates

-       Use relative URLs for resources that reside on the same secure domain

-       Use protocol relative URLs for all other domains

-       Don’t block your site from crawling using robots.txt

-       Use analytics software within Google Webmaster Tools to track your migration from HTTP to HTTPS.

For more information on how MiHi Digital can help your search engine presence please give us a call on 01566 784860 or email hello@mihidigital.co.uk

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