In the past most online content was governed by HTTP (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol), however, as the internet grew so did the danger of online malicious activities. In order to protect their users, HTTPS (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure) was created.
As the name suggests, it is a much safer version of HTTP, which is why most online businesses are rapidly transferring to it. Unfortunately, some people still have fear of making this transfer, weighing the pros and consequences of such action. With this in mind, here are few reasons why you need to transfer to HTTPS, as well as few tips on how to do so as painlessly as possible.
How Does It Work?
The reason why HTTPS is so much safer is because it uses the so called asymmetric PKI (Public Key Infrastructure). This system consists of two keys (private and public). In this way, if something is encrypted with the use of a public key, it can only be decrypted with the private key. The same goes the other way around. What makes this system practical is the fact that the private key is something only accessible by the owner, while public keys can be given to anyone who it. In other words, it makes the communication between the two parties (regardless of its nature), much more secure.
No Longer Optional
While at the moment HTTP or HTTPS may still seem as a matter of choice, it won’t be long until it is no longer so. You see if one thing is clear it is that Google is favoring the latter and where Google leads the rest of the internet is bound to follow. Furthermore, seeing how online shopping and banking are also conducted through this protocol, it becomes mandatory for everyone who intends create a new website. It is only a matter of time before Google gets over encouraging its use and goes on to enforce it with other means.
You need to learn how to put your business first and if there is anything that can give you even the slightest competitive edge, you need to grab it by the horns and never let go.
What Are the Advantages
As you could see, this all works on the old and familiar the stick and the carrot principle. So far, we have seen the stick, but what about the carrot. Well, the advantages of HTTPS are numerous. First of all, it offers a more reliable encryption system, greater data integrity, and easier authentication method. According to various sources, this protocol also slightly influences the Google SERP rankings, which is something you should always have in mind when considering your SEO.
A Smooth Transition
Now that we have all of the above mentioned in the open, it is time to talk about the transition. The switch from HTTP to HTTPS is not a rocket science, but you need to approach it as systematically as possible. The best course of action would be, to begin with a test server and see where it leads you from there. Make sure to read any documentation and get a security certificate before you initialize the installation.
Later on, you need to deal with the issues such as updating references in content, which is not that hard, but needs to be done manually and can take quite a bit of your time. Still, a simple ctrl-f option will be more than enough to make this repetitive task more bearable. Then, you need to update tags (both canonical and hreflang), update plugins and adjust the CMS-specific settings to your needs. Once you are done with this, check if the external scripts support the HTTPS and update things like disavow file, social share counts, paid media and other tools.
Unfortunately, switching from HTTP to HTTPS is not a walk in the park. Some of the known issues caused by this migration are content duplication, crawler prevention and the existence of the different versions of the same page operating under different protocols. Still, these are all caused by the improperly implemented redirects. Picnet software development company says that HTTPS is a must, but in case you don’t quite know what you’re doing, it’s best to remain on HTTP until you find someone who can transfer everything without impacting your SEO metrics.
One thing is certain, eventually, everyone will have to make this transition and the sooner you start with it, the less painful it is going to be. You need to learn how to put your business first and if there is anything that can give you even the slightest competitive edge, you need to grab it by the horns and never let go. Only those who can adapt to the changing environment with greatest haste and precision can hope to take the full advantage of the new trends. In other words, the ability to evolve is what separates the survivors from the extinct species.