Is Google About to Scare Visitors Away From Your Website?
Did you know 32 percent more sites were hacked in 2016 than in 2015?
This can only mean two things. Website owners are not taking website security seriously, or hackers are two steps ahead of the rest.
Whichever side you take, one thing is clear. Google, the biggest search engine, is taking steps to enhance the safety of its users.
As a website owner, it’s not often good news when you hear Google is tweaking or shaking up a few things. A simple algorithm update can knock your site off the rankings!
So, how’s Google’s new love for secure sites going to affect you?
Here is the complete scoop. You can’t afford to miss out.
Chrome Calls Out Sites without HTTPS Encryption
An effective way to increase site security is to migrate your site from HTTP to HTTPS. The S in HTTPS stands for secure!
But what if you choose to keep using HTTP?
Well, you’re in for a rude surprise!
Google Chrome, the most popular web browser, displays a circular icon with the letter i in the middle. When you click on it, you’re duly notified your connection to the site is not secure.
While this may not be a really big deal if your site doesn’t require visitors to provide any information (name, email, phone number or credit card numbers), it’s absolutely critical if you need this information. Perhaps you run an online business, and customers have to shop from the site.
Put yourself in your visitors’ fingertips. Would you trust your personal information with an insecure site?
Of course not! Why would your visitors trust you with theirs?
What’s more, Google has plans to make the browser to display “Not Secure” in the URL bar of all sites that use HTTP. The warning will be in red!
If you don’t migrate to HTTPS, and Google makes good its plans to show the warning, be rest assured visitors will run away from your site.
HTTPS Is Now a Google Search Ranking Signal
You already know hard it is to break into the first (or even second) page of Google.
If you have a site that is not secure, you have now made the task twice as hard.
Google now recognizes HTTPS as a ranking signal.
Let’s get one thing straight here. Google is generally hideous about what ranking signals go into its algorithm. It’s always been the work of SEO specialists to decipher these signals.
So when it publicly acknowledges HTTPS is now a ranking signal, you have to know the search engine takes security matters seriously.
In this case, though, Google will not directly scare visitors from your site.
But if you don’t use HTTPS encryption on your site, you can as well forget showing up on the first page of results. This also means potential visitors searching for your site may never be able to find it, unless they type the URL address into the browser.
Build a Secure Site or Risk Losing Visitors
The secret is out. Insecure sites scare away visitors.
With Google taking steps to punish insecure sites, you have to act. Playing by Google’s rules is not a matter of choice. You have to do what it says, or you’ll be the only person left visiting your own site.
So, what’s the solution? Easy. Contact your preferred design and/or hosting agency and let them help you secure your site today.
Do you need help securing your site? BizzwithBuzz, Inc. (BuzzRecruiter.com) is the trusted design agency for SmartSearch and many other HR Tech and HR-related brands and would welcome the opportunity to assist.