Yes, today you can’t do without the HTTPS protocol! You have no choice, you must have it. That’s why I decided to explain you what it is and how to install a free SSL certificate on your website!
The past 2018 has been marked by many innovations in the world of the Web, and one of those that has received greater resonance, along with the Medical Update, is certainly the HTTPS protocol, SSL certificates and declarations by Google about it. We all know that security on the web, especially with regard to economic transactions, has always been an important and much debated issue, but never before has this been discussed.
Google has openly declared the importance of boasting an HTTPS protocol. As a result many webmasters have run for cover, turning to the web looking for how to get free SSL certificates. Below you will find everything you need to implement them and to understand the importance of their implementation.
What is an SSL certificate?
The term SSL means Secure Socket Layer and is nothing but a protocol used to allow the transmission of information in a protected and safe way. Simply put SSL certificates identify a website as safe and encrypt all information transmitted to the server.
Through the implementation of a certificate, either free or paid, the address of your site will obtain the HTTPS protocol, passing from note from http://mysite.com to https://mysite.com.
When it is fundamental?
Initially, SSL certificates were essential if they were present on only one type of website.
1) First of all they had to be present in e-commerce, in booking sites and where economic transactions are required, or where security is one of the most important factors. Besides, therefore, to a good protection and to the choice of an excellent hosting, every online reality of this type will have to boast the HTTPS protocol, so as to indicate to its customers that the site is safe and that it can buy you without problems.
This can be a factor that will greatly influence the decision-making choice of customers who, being in front of an unsafe site, could easily decide to step back and choose a different e-commerce. However, the use of an SSL certificate also guarantees the security of the site owner, who thanks to it will defend himself from fraud, phishing attempts and so on.
But Google, from October 2017, indicates with the notice of “non-secure site”, all sites without SSL certificate for data encryption. This implies that certificates are also required in all sites that require data transmission. In fact, during the compilation of forms, such as forms for requesting contact or quotes, a pop-up will appear in all sites without https protocol, to indicate that the site on which you are located is not secure.
Let’s not forget then that Google itself had declared, already in 2015, that the sites having the HTTPS protocol would have obtained a small boost in their organic positioning. In a nutshell, until about a year ago, the certificates were mandatory, or at least highly recommended.
During this 2019, however, Google Chrome will arrange for a warning to appear blocking the visit to sites that do not have the HTTPS protocol. Therefore, the certificate will become indispensable for browsing the sites.
How to get a free SSL certificate
As you may have understood, having an SSL certificate is essential for having a successful site, and it will be more and more because, soon, it is likely that it will become mandatory to own it. But how to get it for free?
The truth is that in order to boast a secure and guaranteed HTTPS protocol free of charge there are only two ways: to buy a hosting where the SSL certificate is already present, or to rely on automatic and open certificates like Let’s Encrypt.
If you want to aim to install a free certificate with Let’s Encrypt I suggest you read what is written on html or take a look at the video below, which explains how to install an SSL certificate on any type of hosting.
For the second option you will instead have to rely on providers that already integrate SSL in their hosting. On ServerPlan, for example, you can find different solutions for your web reality, all including a free ssl certificate inside them. The HTTPS protocol is guaranteed both on VPS (virtual Private Server) and on other hosting plans, even for the cheapest ones, such as WordPress hosting.
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Is a free certificate enough?
As with many questions regarding the Web, the most correct answer is dependent. A free certificate, for example those obtained thanks to Let’s Encypt, are more than sufficient for realities such as personal blogs, within which the exchange of data and information is almost nil.
However, if you have an online business that is based on the sale of products or services and that daily exchanges a lot of information between clients and servers, then you will have to evaluate the purchase of a better certificate, which offers you more protection and, above all, more guarantees.
ServerPlan offers various SSL certificates, all at a more than economic price, including Wildcards and EVs. Free certificates have obvious limits that must be resolved in certain situations.
Let’s Encrypt, for example, offers only the validation of the domain and not the EV, the extended validation and, consequently, does not verify the ownership of the domain. One of the most important limitations is that Let’s Encrypt offers neither guarantees nor support, nor defense against phishing phenomena, unlike paid certificates that offer guarantees.
Free SSL certificates are certainly obtainable and can offer a valid and sufficient implementation for many websites. However, the protection they guarantee is not sufficient for every type of online reality and, consequently, it is necessary to evaluate the purchase of a paid SSL certificate that guarantees the complete securing of the site.
So if you make sales, bookings or money transfers on your site, then your only solution is to opt for paid certificates that guarantee excellent encryption to defend you from fraud and make your customer feel secure.