What is an SSL Certificate? Benefits of SSL Explained

ssl certificate

What is an SSL Certificate? Benefits of SSL Explained

What is SSL? You may have heard the term SSL before, or someone might have said your website needs an SSL certificate, but you may not have any idea what SSL is.

No problem. When you finish reading this article you will have a general knowledge of what SSL is and you will be able to decide whether you need an SSL or not.

What is SSL?

Simply put, SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. SSL certificates help protect the information that people enter on your website. For example, an SSL certificate protects the personal data of visitors who subscribe to the newsletter of your website or the credit card information of customers who shop from your site.

The information contained in an SSL certificate is:

  • Name of the certificate owner
  • Certificate serial number and expiry date
  • A copy of the owner’s public key
  • A digital signature of the issuing authority

In a nutshell, SSL certificate secures your website and allows you to gain the trust of your visitors.

Why Do You Need an SSL Certificate?

If visitors or customers enter information (name, address, credit card, etc.) into your website, you will definitely need an SSL certificate to protect this information.

In the past, you only needed an SSL certificate if your website was collecting information from visitors. This is no longer the case.

Google placed great emphasis on the use of SSL, making it a part of the search engine algorithm. Since July 2018, all websites that are not protected by SSL certificates are marked as “Not Secure” on Google Chrome. At the same time, the green secure site seal which appears if you use an SSL certificate has already become indispensable for any website.

The use of SSL affects a website’s rankings in search results and increases conversion rates.

Therefore, the use of SSL is no longer optional. A requirement for all websites and blogs if you care about SEO.

Here’s what SSL will provide you as a website owner:

  • Encryption: SSL encrypts operations between browsers, servers, applications and browsers, browsers and servers.
  • Authentication: Allows you to make sure that you are connected to the correct server.
  • Data integrity: Ensures that the data requested and/or sent reaches the required locations.

Unfortunately, cybercrime is increasing day by day and costs are expected to reach $6 trillion by 2021. Yes; 6 trillion dollars!

That’s why SSL holds great importance for data used for online payments, such as credit card, bank account information as well as other areas such as interpersonal file sharing, server input-output, hosting control panels.

Benefits of SSL for Small Businesses

  • Looking more professional: One of the benefits of an SSL certificate is to look more professional and increase your credibility. Every business that wants to get an SSL certificate is subjected to the necessary controls by the issuing organization.
  • Increasing visitor loyalty: If you collect any information about your visitors, through the contact forms on your website, you need to have an SSL certificate. Visitors who know that their data is protected are more likely to come back to your website.
  • Attract more customers: If you sell online, you can be sure that your customers will want to see an SSL certificate. If you don’t have a certificate, they may not even stay on your e-commerce website long enough to review your products.
  • Protecting your own information: SSL protects both sent and received information when sending documents such as promotional codes or receipts to your visitors.

How SSL Works?

What is SSL, how it works… SSL establishes a secure, encrypted connection between the visitor’s internet browser and the web server.

As SSL allows to establish a secure session, a visitor’s shopping or browsing experience is not interrupted. You can think of SSL as a safe that protects valuable items (visitor information) on the internet.

Exactly how SSL works? When you receive an SSL certificate, the private key installed on your server creates the certification map of your website.

The DV Certificate (domain verification certificate), which is part of the standard SSL, is also uploaded to the server where you host your public key so that your visitors’ data is encrypted.

When data is exchanged, the data is encrypted, and only those private keys that we mentioned at the beginning can open them.

Here’s what an SSL certificate provides in short.

Receive Payments Securely

If you want to accept credit card payments for products or services on your e-commerce website, you must have an SSL certificate. Major hosting companies require that the website to have an SSL certificate before accepting credit card payments. In this way, you do not risk your visitors as well as your own business during online shopping.

Secure Logins

When we say password-protected login you should not only think of websites such as forums and e-commerce sites. CMS platforms such as WordPress that require admins to login with their username and password also need SSL certificates. Keep in mind; There are many bots on the internet looking for websites that use weak passwords. You don’t want others, especially hackers, to get your passwords!

Protect Web Forms

Of course, online shopping does not take place on every website; some websites are collecting data. Some people collect information such as name, surname and e-mail address through contact forms, while others can use the form to better survey their current and target audience. You wouldn’t want this kind of personal information of your visitors to get in the hands of others. If you do not have an SSL certificate, this information shared by these simple-looking forms could be captured.

What Kind of SSL Do You Need?

All SSL certificates provide security and secure data sent to websites. However, the information requested from the website owner differs during the purchase and approval process. If we would need to rank SSL certificates starting with the highest security level:

  • EV (Extended Validation) SSL Certificate
  • OV (Organization Validated) SSL Certificate
  • DV (Domain Validated) SSL Certificate

Here is the question you need to ask yourself: How important is it for you that your domain is associated with your brand?

While answering the question of what is SSL, let’s look at what these three types of certificates provide.

EV (Extended Validation) SSL Certificate

EV Certificates contain a lot of information about the certified company. Businesses must comply with the most stringent requirements in order to receive this certificate. EV Certificates offer the highest level of credibility to your website; The approved, secure ID of your business appears in the green address bar.

OV (Organization Validated) SSL Certificate

OV Certificates also authenticate. So, your company information is included in your certificate. However, unlike EV Certificates, this information does not appear prominently on your website. Visitors will need to browse the certificate details to view company information.

DV (Domain Validated) SSL Certificate

DV Certificates show that the website owner has control over the site. They have session encryption, but they do not contain company information. As we mentioned all SSL certificates provide security and secure the data of your website and your visitors.

So, while having an SSL for your website is vital either you have an e-commerce website or a blog, when deciding what type of SSL to choose, the only thing you need to consider is to decide how much you care about your domain is associated with your brand. You can ask your web design company to take care of getting an appropriate SSL for your website during the web design process.

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