WordPress SSL 101

Your WordPress site needs an SSL — to keep your site users protected + to improve your SEO. With many hosting companies providing WordPress SSL certificates for free, why not use one?

WTF is SSL anyway?

In geek speak, SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. My guess is that did absolutely nothing to help you understand what SSL is + why you need it, right?

In less geekier terms, SSL protects sensitive data that is going from one system to another. SSL prevents hackers from seeing or modifying the information going between the two systems.

What is sensitive data?

Anything personal that your site visitors submit to you — name, email address, credit card information, mailing address, date of birth, etc. Online security is very important because there are so many identity thieves looking for their next target.

Do you have SSL on your WordPress site?

The good news is that this is really easy to check. Go to your domain, but make sure you type in https:// before it (not http://). If it works, you are using SSL. (Nice job!) If your site doesn’t load or loads an error, you are not using SSL + need to work on fixing that.

Another way to check if you have SSL is to see if your domain has a lock icon in the URL bar of your browser (Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc). Notice the gray lock next to https://tinyblueorange.com? That means this WordPress site is secure + using SSL.

SSL 101 // tiny blue orange

If you’re still not sure, this site will tell you if you have SSL installed correctly.

Why do you need SSL?

The SSL assigned to your domain (yup, if you have multiple domains, you’ll need multiple SSLs) will keep any sensitive data collected on your site protected + therefore keep your clients or potential clients protected from crappy circumstances like having their identity or credit card information stolen.

How much is keeping your customers safe worth to you?

Beyond protecting your fans + clients, using SSL will get you in front of more potential clients because search engines reward sites for caring about security.

This has been happening since late 2014. And last year, Chrome started displaying the phrase “Not Secure” next to any domain that wasn’t using SSL at all. Which means if you’re not using SSL + your potential client uses Chrome, they will get a warning that your site isn’t secure. Talk about leaving a bad first impression.

**In case you’re wondering, over 60% of the internet is viewed using Chrome as a browser, so a lot of folks could be seeing that your site isn’t secure.

How do you set up WordPress SSL certificates?

Our hosting plans include SSL for your website as long as you are hosting with us. Whether you choose the $70/month plan or the $200/month plan, your site will rank better in Google searches + keep your site visitors safe from hackers. Protect your business with our Managed WordPress Cloud Hosting.

Your hosting company may also include SSL, or they may charge an annual fee of $49-$99 for each domain. If you have 2 WordPress websites, that could cost you $198/year or more!

There are options like Let’s Encrypt, which provides free SSL to anyone with a bit of technical know-how. They have documentation on their site for the steps you need to follow to secure your WordPress website.

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