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What is an SSL certificate and do i need one?

Guide
by Iain Thomson Agency Project Manager

For any online business, it is vital that you prioritise security and ensure that consumers feel safe shopping with you. 72% of consumers have abandoned a purchase due to concerns over payment security or finding the process tedious.  Statistics show that 19% of consumers who have abandoned their shopping basket did so because they didn’t trust the site with their credit card information.

While a single abandoned purchase could be worth just tens of pounds, the global cost of abandoned carts and deterred shoppers as a result of security concerns is estimated to be up to $2.75 trillion.

What?

A Secure Sockets Layer (or ‘SSL’) encrypts the connection between a visitor’s browser and your server. This ensure that any data that your visitor inputs (e.g. login credentials, personal information, or payment details) are transferred over a secure network.

Why?

It’s great having high levels of security on your site, but you need to make it known by your visitors as well otherwise how will they know? Having an SSL certificate communicates to the customer that your website is current, legitimate, and secure. Basically, it reassures visitors that they are not entering a scam page or site and that it is safe to shop with you.

They are difficult to forge, and without one, customers are likely to leave the site or abandon a purchase because the indications of security aren’t there. With an SSL certificate you can let it be known that you take security seriously and ensure that new potential customers feel safe even if your site is unfamiliar to them.

How?

It’s fairly easy to obtain an SSL certificate. There are free ones available, however it can be worth getting a paid-for certificate with stricter authentication processes and stronger indications of trust for the customer. If you have any questions or queries, just get in touch and one of our team will be happy to help.

P.s…

SSL certificates have advantages for website optimisation as well as for security. As you will already know, search engine optimisation (SEO) is the process of ensuring that your site reaches the top of Google’s search results, usually involving a combination of content, creative keyword use, and optimised web design. Adding an SSL to your site provides additional authentication and encourages it to be trusted by Google, possibly even slightly bumping up your rankings.