SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer …
Security is a top priority for Google. They invest a lot in making sure that their services use industry-leading security, like strong HTTPS encryption by default. That means that people using Search, Gmail and Google Drive, for example, automatically have a secure connection to Google.
They’re also working to make the Internet safer more broadly. A big part of that is making sure that websites people access from Google are secure. For instance, they have created resources to help webmasters prevent and fix security breaches on their sites. This information continues to be exceptionally useful for web developers, app devs, and data jockeys.
Not too long ago, Google called for “HTTPS everywhere” on the web. Meaning they were seeking to have every website secure at all times!
For these reasons, over the past couple of years Google has been running tests taking into account whether sites use secure, encrypted connections as a signal in their search ranking algorithms. They have seen positive results, so they’re starting to use HTTPS as a ranking signal. For now it’s only a very lightweight signal and carrying less weight than other signals such as high-quality content. This gives webmasters time to switch your site to HTTPS. Eventually, SSL will become a stronger signal within the Google search algorithm encouraging all website owners to switch from HTTP to HTTPS to keep everyone safe on the web.
SSL DECISION-MAKING FACTORS
- Decide the kind of certificate you need: single, multi-domain, or wildcard certificate
- Use 2048-bit key certificates
- Use relative URLs for resources that reside on the same secure domain
- Use protocol relative URLs for all other domains
- Check out our Site move article for more guidelines on how to change your website’s address
- 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.
If your website is already serving on HTTPS, you can test its security level and configuration with the Qualys Lab tool. If you are concerned about TLS and your site’s performance, have a look at Is TLS fast yet?. And of course, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to EMAIL ME.
Let’s all make the web more secure!