When it comes to the internet, security is everything. Hackers and cyber-criminals leave consumers and business owners leery and in need of reassurance that their online transactions are safe. One way for business owners with an e-commerce presence to guarantee it to their customers is with an SSL certificate.
What Is SSL?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, and it is one of the most important protections you can provide to keep the personal and credit card information of your customers safe.
An SSL certificate provides an encrypted link between a web server and a browser to securely transmit sensitive information and keep it out of the hands of cybercriminals. It is an essential part of accepting online payments.
Who Needs an SSL Certificate?
If you are selling anything online or collecting any type of sensitive customer data, you need an SSL certificate. It does not matter how small your business, the risks of not having one are too big.
What SSL Means to Customers
Savvy shoppers will know if you have an SSL certificate. It is the “s” in your site’s address that gives it away: “https://” vs. “http://”. In some browsers, such as Chrome, there will be a tiny padlock in the browser bar if you have an SSL certificate. If shoppers do not see these security markers on your site, they are likely to go to another site that reinforces cyber security. Your site will not even be visible on Chrome if you do not have an SSL certificate, which could result in the loss of potential business.
Not only that, but having an SSL certificate can boost your Google ranking, which can lead to more eyes on your site and thus, more business.
How to Get an SSL Certificate
There are various levels of SSL certificates you will want to evaluate based on your business needs. Costs start at just $50 per year, so it does not have to be a huge expense. To determine which one and obtain it for your site, you can contact your web hosting company, who can also install and configure it. Some do so automatically, so you may have an SSL certificate and not even know it. You can also purchase and install one yourself.
The bottom line is, getting an SSL certificate is a necessary part of e-commerce. It's good business.