An SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate is used to encrypt the web traffic between the web server where your website is hosted and your visitors’ browsers. An SSL encrypted web page will display a lock and https://www in the browser address bar. The page you are on now is encrypted, so take a look at your browser address bar for an example.  See below for 4 reasons why your website needs SSL…

Trust

In 2018, people are looking for the green padlock https:// in the browser address bar. It’s a sign of trust that relays to your customers that you have taken the steps to ensure their privacy while they interact with your website. Adding SSL will gain you an unparalleled advantage over competing real estate websites (most do not have SSL encryption!) by providing visitors with peace of mind.

Honesty and trustworthiness are important

Security

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral. Even if you are not accepting payments through your website, the security offered by an SSL certificate is becoming increasingly necessary to maintain the integrity of your web pages.

Read Google’s post about why https matters

Avoid the Google Chrome 'Not Secure' message
Google Chrome'Not Secure' message

Starting in July 2018, Google Chrome marks all HTTP sites as ‘not secure’ – as shown on the above screenshot.  If the website does not have a valid SSL certificate, the Google Chrome browser will warn users with an extra notification in the address bar. A valid SSL certificate will be necessary for Chrome mark HTTPS-encrypted sites with a green lock icon and “Secure” sign.  Open your website using the Google Chrome browser to see if you see this error message.

Read Google’s announcement about Chrome

Boost SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Google introduced SSL as a weak ranking signal way back in 2014. At the time, Google hinted that over time, they might decide to strengthen it as a signal because they wanted to encourage all website owners to switch from HTTP to HTTPS. Now, in 2018, that time has come. In today’s highly competitive real estate market, adding SSL encryption could be the factor that allows your site to rank higher than a competitor.

Read Google’s post about HTTPS as a ranking signal

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