Its official – search giant Google declared last week that it will be ranking websites with SSL certificates higher in the search results.

The effect of SSL certificates on SEO ranking has been speculated since long. Digital security specialists have always emphasized that securing the data transfer on your website with an SSL certificate is a must; not only for getting customer trust, but also to ensure proper visibility of your business and website in search engines.

Google Drops Search Ranking of Websites Without SSL Certificate 1Over the past few months we’ve been running tests taking into account whether sites use secure, encrypted connections as a signal in our search ranking algorithms. We’ve seen positive results, so we’re starting to use HTTPS as a ranking signal.
– Gary Illyes, Webmaster Trends Analyst, Google.Google Drops Search Ranking of Websites Without SSL Certificate 2Google Drops Search Ranking of Websites Without SSL Certificate 3

With Google clearing the air and making it public that websites without SSL certificates will be ranked lower, getting an SSL certificate now is a must for online presence.

Google takes into consideration a number of signals to position a website in the search engine results, such as high quality unique content, backlinks, relevance to a search request etc., and will now include SSL certificate as a key factor too.

To give website owners enough time to adopt SSL certificates, Google will give relatively less weight to SSL certificates, but has made it clear that it will “strengthen it over time to keep everyone safe on the web.”

Many reputed companies like LinkedIn and Yahoo have recognized this trend and have moved towards the secure HTTPS zone.

Overtime, when Google makes this factor fully functional in its search engine algorithms, smaller websites who do not utilize SSL certificates for encrypting their data transmission, stand to lose a lot as lower ranking on Google search engine translates to lesser traffic, lower reputation and subsequent loss in business.

ZNetLive encourages all its customers to secure their website and business online with the right SSL certificate.

Google has published the following best practices to purchase the right SSL certificate-

  • Decide the kind of certificate you need: single, multi-domain, or wildcard SSL certificate.
  • Use 2048-bit key SSL certificates.
  • Use relative URLs for resources that reside on the same secure domain
  • Don’t block your HTTPS site from crawling using robots.txt
  • Allow indexing of your pages by search engines where possible. Avoid the noindex robots meta tag.

For more information on what an SSL certificate is and how it ensures better visibility of your website in search engine results, please visit ZNetLive’s SSL information center.

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Jyotsana Gupta

Jyotsana Gupta - the content and communication head, is an engineer by education and a writer at heart. In technical writing for 8 years, she makes complex topics interesting to general audience. She loves going on long drives in her spare time.
Jyotsana Gupta