You may have read about Google Chrome advising it’s users that it will be changing the way non-HTTPS websites are displayed and accessed. At the very least, you have probably seen a warning on some websites that you’ve visited saying they are not secure. The warnings can range from the website not loading before you accept the security concerns to a red warning in the address bar.
Google Chrome currently displays a green padlock icon to show that a website is secure. According to Google, due to so many sites now being secure, Chrome will start flagging the insecure websites with a prominent red warning.
A Non Secure Website
In addition to this, Chrome will stop displaying the green icon for websites secured by SSL. Their thinking is that HTTPS should be considered the default state of a website, especially now that so many websites are secure. Your visitors should feel that their data and information is secure as a standard. It therefore makes sense that a warning should be provided for anything unsafe, rather than to simply indicate the state of security one way or another. Chrome will roll out these changes in two phases. The first phase starts in September 2018. At this point, the green padlock icon will no longer be displayed for safe sites. In October 2018 Chrome will start issuing a warning about unsecured websites in the form of a prominent red icon.
Conclusion: Should You Convert Your Site to HTTPS?
Yes, absolutely. You should start taking steps to secure your website immediately. Whilst SSL certificates had previously been used exclusively for eCommerce sites, the fact is that all websites are now affected.
From a usability standpoint, visitors who see a red warning icon may be reluctant to continue using your website. This in turn can increase bounce rates and affect your SEO rankings.
From an SEO standpoint, Google has hinted that SSL will affect SEO rankings.
Speak to your web hosting company today about installing a configuring an SSL certificate for your website.
From Google’s Blog: