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Quick answer:

Very, and you need to have one on your website!

First, let’s talk about what an SSL certificate is. 

The SSL certificate, short for Secure Sockets Layer, allows for data to be communicated between the user, website and server through a protected encryption. This protects things like financial and credit card transactions, email or course sign-ups, access to online email inboxes, and other sensitive information.

You can recognize a website protected with an SSL certificate when it has https:// before the we address (instead of https:// without the ’s’). Browsers like Safari and Google Chrome also place a lock icon in the website address bar on websites that are protected.

SSL Certificates Provide Protection

Ok, so knowing what an SSL certificate is, an obvious benefit is data protection for you and your website visitors. But what else does an SSL certificate do that makes it so important?

Building Trust with Website Visitors

With the number of scams, identity thefts and data breeches rapidly increasing in the last few years and affecting millions of individuals each year an SSL certificate builds trust. It helps a user know that your website is doing what it can to protect their information. Personally before I ever enter my email, address or credit card information online when online shopping I always check that the website has an SSL certificate. If it does not, I’m no longer interested in joining that email list or making that purchase – and I know I’m not alone! 

Google’s Website Protection Initiative

In 2014 Google announced they were moving towards increasing the importance of an SSL certificate. Websites that had extra level of security rank higher in search results. But in 2018 Google went one step further and in Google Chrome and their search results, websites without an SSL certificate give notice that this website may not be secure. Not something we want attached to your website!

So why is an SSL Certificate Important?

it protects user data 
it adds extra security for your own website
your website security is verified by the https:// added to your domain and a lock icon
it builds trust with your website visitors and users
websites with an ssl certificate rank higher in Google
Google advocates for encryption, secure websites won’t be labeled “not secure” in search results or in their browser



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