Starting in July, Google Chrome will explicitly inform its users about the level of safety of the website they are using and will require HTTPS website security. If you want to make sure to give your visitors the best experience while on your website, it is essential to be up to date with the current changes in Google and the online landscape.
For years now, one of Google’s main aspirations has been to create a safe experience for its users. It wants to prevent scammers from obtaining information from Chrome web surfers. Knowing this, a large number of pages have shifted from HTTP to HTTPS in order to prevent visitors from leaving their website. The progress has been great. Only in one year:
- 64% of Chrome traffic in Android is now protected
- 75% of Chrome traffic on Chrome OS and Mac is now protected
- 71 of the top 100 websites have switched to HTTPS.
Source: Google Blog
This change will affect a lot of websites which have not converted their website into HTTPS considering that Google Chrome has a significant number of users.
What is the difference between HTTP and HTTPS?
HTTP stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol whereas HTTPS stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol SECURE. If you stumble across a website which says HTTPS rather than HTTP you will be glad to know that your information is secure. HTTPS websites ensure you that no one can steal your information or hack your browser. It also ensures that only your server and the one you are exchanging information with are the ones that can read and decipher the exchanged codes.
What will Google do exactly?
This new update of Google Chrome will tell all of its users that HTTP websites are not secure. Also, it will shift them to an HTTPS website by default. The address bar will have a “Not Secure” warning on the side so that users can see it immediately and not use the site. This will impact some countries more than others, especially South America, where Chrome use is very high – around 75%. You MUST consider upgrading your website to an HTTPS, especially considering that most web hosting providers offer it for free now.
There is no time for excuses because there is a due date. Even if your web hosting provider does not offer it for you, Google Chrome is making continuous efforts to make encryption cheaper and available to all. For instance, Google Chrome, along with many others, is a sponsor of Let’s Encrypt. Let’s Encrypt is a free automated and open Certificate Authority. Google Chrome is trying to make this process as easy and efficient as possible to everyone, considering its level of importance.
What about HTTPS SEO?
Having an HTTPS website will affect your ranking in a positive matter. Having good content is one component but, your ranking depends on other factors as well.
- An HTTPS Website is favored by Google Chrome algorithm therefore, it will rank higher than HTTP Websites. This is quite an obvious one, considering Google Chrome’s advocacy of HTTPS.
- An HTTPS Website ensures more organic traffic, which as a result will provide more engaged visitors.
- Over 80% of users would not purchase something if that website is ranked as insecure. Considering a large number of spam websites, customers need to know that what you provide them with is genuine and secure.
The reasons you should upgrade your website are:
- HTTPS is cheaper and faster than ever. Also, it offers new features which HTTP does not.
- Maintain traffic as this new Google Chrome update may negatively impact visitor confidence in visiting your site, which in response will decrease overall website visits
- Maintain sales. Your sales will be affected if your website is not ranked as a safe one. Due to less anticipated traffic on your website, your sales will suffer. Advertising opportunities will decrease as well.
- In conclusion, SEO favors HTTPS Websites. Act now.