You've probably seen a few of those little green lock icons next to website URLs in your web browser. They indicate that the site is secure, meaning that your connection is encrypted and that no one can eavesdrop on your traffic.
An SSL certificate is what makes this encryption possible. It's a digital certificate issued by a certificate authority (CA) that verifies the identity of the website and encrypts the data exchanged between the site and its users.
If you run an online store, you’ll need an SSL certificate to protect your customers' information. In this article, we'll explain what SSL is and how to get an SSL certificate for your store.
What is an SSL certification?
An SSL certification, or Secure Sockets Layer certification, is a digital certificate that validates a website’s identity and encrypts the information visitors submit on the site. This is important because it ensures that the data being transmitted is safe and cannot be intercepted by a third party.
For online stores, this is critical because it builds customer trust. When a customer sees the little green padlock in their browser bar and knows that their information is being encrypted, they are more likely to complete a purchase. An SSL certification is also a requirement for e-commerce stores that accept credit card payments.
If you don't have an SSL certification yet, don't worry. It's easy to get one and it's not very expensive. Plus, it's something that you should definitely consider if you want to make your online store more secure and trustworthy.
What are the benefits of having an SSL certificate?
An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that verifies the identity of a website and encrypts the information visitors enter on the site. This is an important security measure to have for any website, but it's especially crucial for online stores.
1. It keeps your customers’ data safe
Without an SSL certificate, your customers are vulnerable to identity theft and other security threats. An SSL certificate helps protect their personal information by encrypting it so that it can't be read by anyone other than the intended recipient.
2. It helps improve your store rankings
Additionally, an SSL certificate can help improve your website's SEO rankings. Google has stated that websites with SSL certificates are more likely to rank higher in search results than those without them. This is because Google considers SSL certification to be a sign of trust and security.
So if you're not already using an SSL certificate for your online store, now is the time to get one. It's essential for keeping your customers safe and helping your website rank higher in search results.
How to get an SSL certificate for your website?
The easiest way to get an SSL certificate is to purchase one from a trusted issuer. This will involve some paperwork and verification of your company's identity, but it's a fast and straightforward process.
There are also a number of free SSL certificates available, but these can be more complicated to set up and may not be as trustworthy as those from a reputable issuer.
Once you have your SSL certificate, you'll need to install it on your web server. If you're not familiar with how to do this, your web hosting provider should be able to help.
Different types of SSL certificates
When it comes to SSL certificates, there are different types to choose from, depending on your website's requirements. In general, though, they all do the same thing—protecting sensitive information exchanged between your online customers and your website.
1. Domain Validated Certificate
This is generally issued within minutes and is good for smaller websites with light traffic. This type of certificate verifies that you own the domain but doesn't provide extra levels of identity assurance or encryption.
2. Organization Validation Certificate
This type of SSL certificate verifies not only that you own the domain but also that it’s valid and secure. You will need to provide additional information so that your visitors can view the authenticated details in order to make sure they’re doing business with a legitimate website.
3. Extended Validation Certificate
For businesses that require a higher level of security (for example if you’re dealing with financial transactions), then an Extended Validation Certificate is what you need. This one also requires additional authentication steps in order for it to be issued but offers the highest levels of trust and encryption available.
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Which SSL certificate should you choose for your website?
So now that you know what an SSL certificate is and why it is important, which one should you choose for your website? Well, there are a few factors to consider.
1. Type of website
The type of website you have – an e-commerce store or simply a blog – will determine the type of certificate you need. If you're running an e-commerce store, you'll want to get a certificate that offers encryption for payment information sent to your website.
2. Size of your website
Next, consider the size of your website. If it's small and simple, a single-domain certificate should be enough; however, if your business has multiple domains or subdomains, it may be best to go for a multi-domain certificate or even a wildcard covering all subdomains.
3. Level of authentication needed
Finally, think about the level of authentication needed and choose accordingly. Depending on how much trust customers need to have in your business before making purchases, you may opt for anything from Domain Validation (DV) right up to Extended Validation (EV). Whichever option you choose should offer full security and the peace of mind your customers need.
How to install and activate your SSL certificate
Now that you know what an SSL certificate is and why it's important, you're probably wondering how to set one up for your online store.
Fortunately, installing an SSL certificate is relatively easy and something you can do yourself without needing to hire a professional. All you need is a hosting provider that offers SSL certificates. Then, follow the steps outlined by your hosting provider for activating the certificate on your website.
You'll also need to ensure that all of your pages are using HTTPS so that sensitive data like passwords and credit card numbers are securely transmitted across the web. This requires updating any hard-coded URLs in your files from HTTP to HTTPS and ensuring your site has a valid SSL certificate installed.
Finally, don't forget to update any external links pointing to the website that have HTTP URLs instead of HTTPS ones, so they continue to direct customers properly and come up as secured pages in browsers.
An SSL certification helps you improve customer trust. Don’t think twice before having one for your online store.
The no-code app builder Swipecart works for only SSL-certified stores. This means that you have to have the SSL certification intact if you want to create an app for your store on this amazing drag-and-drop app builder.
If you are looking to protect your customers’ data and want to ensure that your online store is safe and secure, get an SSL certification. SSL certificates are not expensive and are easy to install, so there is no reason not to get one for your online store. Moreover, it helps if you decide to create an app for your store to increase customer engagement and improve the retention rate. Get your store SSL-certified now!