When it comes to shopping online, trust is critical. People will shop with brands they trust, but they will overlook those they do not. Security in your ecommerce platform is paramount to building that trust, and SSL certificates are part of your security plan.
An SSL certificate is installed on a web server to encrypt the information users place on the website before it is sent over the server. When an SSL certificate is in place, hackers cannot access that data on the trip from the website to the server.
Once it lands at the server, it is decrypted and you can use it as intended. This critical security measure has a number of important benefits specific to ecommerce websites.
Here is a closer look at why SSL for ecommerce websites is so important.
Benefits of SSL for Ecommerce Websites
Are you weighing the pros and cons of SSL? Here are some benefits that you need to understand.
1. SSL Protects Your Customers
First and foremost, SSL protects your customers.
A data breach can mean serious problems for your company, and putting proper security measures in place means that your customers can shop with you without fear of their data being compromised.
This builds trust with your brand, which is critical to your online marketing success.
2. SSL Helps Your SEO Efforts
While the security of your customers should be a top priority, that is just one of several benefits that investing in SSL certificates offers. Investing in quality SSL certificates can also boost your SEO efforts
Google has prioritized a secure Internet space. Google also realizes that many online searchers will abandon a website if it is not secure, even if they land on it for a moment.
Thus, Google is starting to reward sites that are fully secure with https addresses. Not only that, but Google Chrome actually labels sites with the HTTP designation as "insecure," which will hurt user's trust.
This has been the case as early as 2014, when new algorithms started favoring HTTPS sites. The next update in 2015 indicated that HTTPS sites would be boosted if there was a tie between the quality signals for one site and its competitor.
Today, 40 percent of Google's page one ranking sites are HTTPS sites. If you have proper security in place, your site has a better chance of reaching that coveted top page spot.
3. SSL Helps You Beat the Competition
Ecommerce can be a highly competitive world. When you add an SSL certificate to your website, you give yourself a leg up on your competition.
The increased trust and SEO boost provided by the right security both help you look like a better choice when someone is ready to make a purchase.
4. SSL Creates Faster Load Times
In addition to being favored by Google, HTTPS sites load faster than HTTP sites, and Google rewards fast load times with a higher rank.
Faster load times improve the customer's experience while also helping boost your search engine rank.
5. SSL Reduces the Risk of Phishing Scams
Phishing scams use email that looks like it comes from your brand to trap your customers into giving away important information. These scammers will set up a site that is almost identical to yours, send an email, and entice people to shop with "you," only to take their money and run.
SSL certificates make it almost impossible to create a site that looks enough like yours to make a phishing scam work.
6. Necessary to Stay Compliant for Taking Payments
As an ecommerce store, you are going to be taking payments. To stay compliant with Payment Card Industry standards, you need to have an SSL certificate that provides an encryption of a minimum of 128-bit.
If you do not have this in place, you cannot accept credit card payments on your site.
7. Add Visible Security Stickers to Your Site
Your SSL security certificate will come with a badge that you can add to your site that indicates it is properly secured. This adds a visible reminder of your trustworthiness, and this can help increase brand trust even further.
Choosing the Best SSL Certificate for Ecommerce Websites
As an ecommerce website, you are going to want to look carefully for the right SSL certificate. Your customers are at the biggest risk, because they are preparing to use their credit card information on your site.
While there are many SSL certificate providers out there, here are some of the best for you to consider that work particularly well for ecommerce stores.
- GoDaddy - GoDaddy is known for web hosting plans, but its SSL services are available for a starting price of $59.99 a year.
- Comodo SSL - One of the most affordable options, Comodo SSL offers a base package for $5.99 per year and a premium package that is $49.99 for four years.
- DigiCert - DigiCert has a higher starting price of $198 for the year, but it is beneficial because of a wildcard option that includes a multi-level domain and unlimited servers.
- Network Solutions - Network Solutions has a $59.99 per year base cost depending on what you need.
- RapidSSL - Another on the affordable side, RapidSSL offers encryption for a starting price of $17.95 per year.
No matter which of these you choose, the reality is this: SSL for ecommerce stores is an absolute necessity. SSL will improve your SEO efforts and your Google ranking, will build trust with your customers, and will protect you from the risks of a data breach.
If you are not using a quality SSL provider, take measures now to make a change, and start building trust with your customers through better security.