Alert: Google Website Security Requirements

Is your small business website being flagged as “Not Secure” when visitors try to access it?  If you don’t have an SSL Certificate, the answer is (or will be) YES.

Unfortunately, if your website does not have an SSL Certificate, Google and browsers will red flag it as “Not Secure.”  This means that you will definitely lose visitors and potential customers every second of every day.  And, if you don’t see the “Not Secure” yet, you most likely will by the end of this year.

Google and browsers will red flag websites without SSL Certificates as “NOT SECURE” and unsafe!

How do I know this?  Not only is it hot news in the industry, but a few of our clients have experienced it too.

Here’s what every small business website owner needs to know:

Requirements for a Secure Website

As you know, most of us turn to the internet for pretty much everything.  From buying and selling online, to discounts and coupon codes, the passing of user data is pretty much everywhere.  The reality is that online security and privatizing your information is a necessity, not a luxury.  We know Google and other search engines love their users, hence they want us to feel secure on the web which is why they are imposing additional security measures.

What is an SSL Certificate?

In simple terms, an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Certificate is a standard security technology tool that establishes an encrypted link between a web server and a browser.  What???  Ok…in simpler terms, the SSL Certificate ensures that all data passed between your website (i.e. www.yourwebsite.com) and a browser (i.e. Chrome) remain private and secure.  You know your website is secure when you see the “lock” and “HTTPS” in your url.

Will my website need an SSL Certificate?

In the past, only websites with ecommerce or login areas required the extra security of SSL.  However, now any websites that meet the following criteria are required to have an SSL Certificate.

  1. Collects any user data (i.e. Contact forms, eNews sign-up forms, Live Chat, etc.).
  2.  On “HTTP” platform, noted in your url.

So to answer your question…YES.

Why is an SSL Certificate crucial?

  • It encrypts sensitive information such as credit card numbers, user names, and passwords.  That means the information that is passed between servers and computers becomes unreadable to everyone except the server you are sending the information to.
  • It protects you from cybercriminals, which is estimated to cost the world over $6 trillion annually within the next three years. Criminals identify weaknesses in your network, mostly when information is being transmitted.
  • It builds trust and brand power with your visitors and customers, as they see the “lock” icon that indicates it’s a well-trusted and secure website.  This gives them peace of mind that their information is traveling safely.

How do I get an SSL Certificate?

You can contact your web developer or Hosting company for more information.  Or, you can procure it on your own with one of the top SSL Certificate providers for 2018, but may still require technical support to implement on your website:

SSL Certificate prices typically range from free to $500/year.  For those of you without ecommerce or logins, and simple Contact forms, etc. you mostly likely will be on the lower side.  These are annual, recurring fees.

We’re here to help…

You never have to go it alone.  Feel free to contact us for more information, and procurement services for your SSL Certificate.

Best regards, until next time!

Kathy Argyros
Founder and Chief Consultant
Exceller Marketing, Inc.
914-450-9149 
kathy@excellermarketing.com

excellermarketing.com

Exceller Marketing is a full-service marketing firm and website design agency servicing small and medium businesses, as well as entrepreneurs in Westchester County, NY and the tri-state area. With powerful traditional and digital marketing communications, coupled with business development, we keep our clients ahead of their competition.

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