In the ecommerce space, a secure checkout is the bare minimum that users expect. If someone is going to enter their credit card information into a website then they want to know that the data they are transferring cannot be sniffed out from thieves and hackers. This level of security has become more of a standard than a feature for websites that receive money and now that Google uses SSL as an organic ranking factor it is likely to become the status quo for all legitimate hosted sites over time.

How to Upgrade to HTTPS

HTTPS is provided by a secure vendor that is audited regularly, Just like website hosting, there is an ocean of SSL certificate vendors with different protocols available. Not all website security protocols are equal and there is no guarantee that the encryption that protects your users privacy will remain uncracked forever. Below is a table of information from the Wikipedia SSL page showing how older revisions of SSL are insecure while newer ones are just drafts.

 

 

Once you have decided on the level of security you want, the next step of the process is to  find an affordable, trustworthy company to use to purchase with. The most popular vendors for the top 10k sites are listed below from BuiltWith.

 


 

After you have selected the SSL protocol and vendor, all that is left is to install the SSL to your site. This part will change depend on how you website is hosted.

 

Alternatively, TruVisibility offers easily integrated SSL for a very affordable price: See our support article on https! The process is quick and effective to get the job done with less research and haggling than is typically necessary.

Redirects for Non-Secure Links

Once your site is up, you will need to make sure that all of your old URLs redirect to the new secure version of your site. Without using a 301 redirect (permanently moved) you will be splitting the link-juice to your company. The redirect logic will be written in your htaccess or web.config files depending on your hosting technology.

Meta Referrer Tags

So you have a new secure site, and all of your old URLs are nicely redirected to the new secure experience? Great job! Now that your content is being hosted securely you will want to focus on your ability to get analytics on your users. Most websites have a “no referrer when downgrade” security policy meaning that when a user clicks a link to a non-secure domain or subdomain, the referral information is stripped out from the visit. If your business has a large ecosystem with various microsites and subdomains then you will want to ensure all of these sites are secure, or you will deploy a meta referrer tag to change the referral policy of the page. These tags are simple and can be deployed via tag management system.

The most popular meta referrer tag is the below which will only pass the referral hostname:

 

<meta name="referrer" content="origin">

 

If you would like to learn more about SEO, web analytics, or user experience as it regards to your website and Truvisibility you can learn more at http://www.truvisibility.com/en/blog. If you are interested in trying Truvisibility out today simply go to truvisibility.com and press the “Get Started” button, it is free and easy.