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What is an SSL Certificate?

An SSL Certificate is an encrypted link between the web server and the web browser.  This encrypted link ensures that all of the information passed between the two remains private.  The SSL Certificate has the following information: the name of the holder, a serial number and expiration date, a copy of the certificate holders public key, and the digital signature of the certificate-issuing authority.  

Basically, think of the SSL certificate as your websites passport to connect to a server.  It verifies your identity and validity and makes the connection secure.

Here is an example of a site with a valid SSL certificate:

Should your site have an SSL Certificate?

There are three main reasons your site should have an SSL certificate.  First, if you are collecting money through your website, security should always be your top concern.  Adding an SSL certificate to your site is a great first step in ensuring your customer’s information will remain private.  Another, even better step, is to consult with a cybersecurity specialist, such as Tandem Cyber Solutions.

Second, most web browsers will flag users who try to visit your site, alerting them that your page is not secure.  They will then have to click a button and agree to enter your site anyway. This can be very off-putting to users and will likely reduce the traffic that successfully viewing your site.  

Users will likely see something like this:

Another important reason to have an SSL certificate on your website is that Google, the God of the internet says so. Google is using their ranking process to punish sites that do not adhere to this security measure.  This means, that when someone is searching for you, or a product/service like you, Google will display your page at a lower ranking on their list than a compliant site.


The cost of adding an SSL certificate to your website is rather minimal.  A service we love here at Green Bag Designs is GoDaddy. At GoDaddy, you can secure one website starting only $74.99.  When you consider the business you may miss out on if you fail to implement an SSL certificate, this price is small change.  There are a variety of other providers out there, so do your research, consult with a security expert, and make sure your website is secure!

If you need a referral for a cybersecurity specialist, give us a call.

We have a network of the best in the business, in the Bag!