Last year we highlighted the importance of moving your website to a https secure version, and Google started to step up the rhetoric on this issue as a new batch of warning messages via Google Search Console in August 2017 started to appear in Webmasters’ Google Search Console http website property accounts.
Google originally stated in October 2017 in the messages being received by webmasters, that from October 2017 Google will show a “NOT Secure” warning when users land on a http page that has a data entry form on it.
It will also show a “NOT Secure” warning for any http pages viewed when browsing in Incognito mode in Google Chrome.
The timing of these warning that http websites seems to have changed as very few websites saw the warning signs that Google had stated they will be showing when people are entering data into entering web forms.
We mentioned previously that it’s likely that you will need to have all pages in https at some point as eventually Google has stated that it will display warning messages on Chrome for all http pages, regardless of whether they have a data entry form included on the page or not.
It seems this day has come as Google recently announced that they will start to show not secure warning messages from July 2018 for all websites that are not https no matter if it is a website where you enter data into a form or not.
What to do if your site is still http?
The key steps you need to take to make sure your website visitors don’t receive browser warning messages in Google Chrome are:
- Change any pages that collects data via a form into https URL pages.
- Any http pages changed to https pages will require redirecting to your new https pages
- Make sure all your http pages 301 redirect to your newly created https version
- Getting SSL certificates to make your website into a https website can be awkward and also cost money on an annual basis.
- You can get a proprietary SSL certificate with someone like Comodo or you can get a free certificate with someone like Let’s Encrypt however this requires the certificate to be renewed every 90 days.
- Your web host can often manage this certificate and also the installation for the certificate for you.
You can find more information on Google’s help section on how to migrate your website to https, these can be found at https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6073543?hl=en
If you feel you need some support to migrate your website to https we have had the benefit of managing many https website migrations over the last 5 years and more, so if you would like some support on migrating your website to make sure you maintain your SEO visibility in the process then please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org