If you run your own e-commerce website, then you probably know about SSL certificates. But how exactly does this work with regards to content management systems like WordPress?
Let’s explore how SSL can work best for you and how best to integrate it with your WordPress platform:
What is SSL?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and it’s a must-have if you run a website that handles transactions with your customers. SSL encrypts transmissions between your customers and your server so that it cannot be intercepted and hacked by criminals looking to steal login information or credit card numbers.
When a website is secured by an SSL certificate, then the URL of the website will read “https” instead of “http.” Besides encrypting the data, this also comes in handy in two other ways. First, SSL certificates (and the https URL) provide customers with a sense of safety. When they see that secured web address, they know that they can trust the website. It’s also helpful for websites because it can factor into Google’s page rank. This means that a website with an SSL certificate will rank higher on the search engine than a site without it.
Getting an SSL
For most content management systems, there are a couple of ways you can install an SSL certificate once you have obtained one. The easiest way to do this, generally speaking, is with a plugin. Usually these require just a few tweaks such as a couple of lines of code. However, plugins have been known to slow down the load time for websites. So, if that is a concern, you may want to manually install it.
If you plan to add an SSL certificate you may want to do so before you build your pages, as any hardcoded links within WordPress (or other content management systems) may require you to change the http to https for each of those links, which can be time consuming.
In order to redirect your page to the secured site, you will need to add two lines of code in the htaccess file and then change your site settings. If you are not sure how to do this, you can contact your web hosting service and they can usually assist you with the process.
Who Needs An SSL Certificate?
SSL certificates have now become a standard requirement for many businesses and even smaller, personal sites that use transactions between computers. If you wish to keep your site safe and secure and exude professionalism and trust, it is something you should consider adding to your site.
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