This year, Google’s “If you want to show up in our search results” mandate is that all sites shall have SSL Certificates. As was the case with previous dictates from the organization that has a virtual monopoly on access to new site visitors, this is not a bad thing … but without a doubt, it’s being FORCED on website owners. In previous years Google has told us that we need to get their ID number (some say the ‘mark of the beast’), sites must be connected with social media channels, sites must be mobile friendly … again, all things that make sense and certainly Google can determine whatever criteria they wish to use for ranking.
SSL Certificates initiate an encrypted connection between the site and the site visitor’s browser. It helps keep the connection private so nobody can virtually “look over the shoulder” of site visitors. In addition to purchasing the certificate, the digital file must also be implemented by the webmaster. It’s not enough to plunk down your money and own an electronic file; simply purchasing the certificate doesn’t mean your site is safe – software must be implemented so the certificate does what it is supposed to do.
As of the writing of this post, the typical “going rate” for SSL Certificates is in the range of $55 to $250 depending on the provider. If your site is hosted by SiteCrafters – that site’s visitors will be greeted with a secure site and certificate properly implemented … included in the price of all our hosting packages!