What is SSL?
SSL (short for Secure Sockets Layer) is the certificate that encrypts communications between the server or mail client and the person visiting your website in a browser. In order to use SSL, you need to have an SSL Certificate installed on your server.All browsers have the capability to interact with secured web servers using the SSL protocol. However, the browser and the server need what is called an SSL Certificate to be able to establish a secure connection. Once installed, your web address will change from http:// to
https:// to indicate that your website is secure.
Why is SSL Important
The SSL indicates that your site is secure and can be trusted to safely process information such as contact information, credit cards, and billing address. HTTPS can be incredibly valuable for your site as it creates a secure channel between the browser and the website. A secure connection is a must-have for sites that process personal information like an eCommerce website.
In addition to encryption, a proper SSL certificate also provides authentication. This means you can be sure that you are sending information to the right server and not to an impostor trying to steal your information. Why is this important? The nature of the Internet means that your customers will often be sending information through several computers. Any of these computers could pretend to be your website and trick your users into sending them personal information. It is only possible to avoid this by getting an SSL Certificate from a trusted SSL provider.
If you accept online payments, you must know a thing or two about PCI/DSS requirements. To receive online payments, your website must be PCI compliant. Having an SSL certificate installed is one of the 12 primary requirements set by the Payment Card Industry (PCI). Therefore, SSL is essential—whether you want it or not.
Also, Google will likely give search engine ranking preference to websites with SSL installed and https activated. What does that mean? If you don’t have SSL on your website, your site may appear lower in Google search rankings, and more secure websites will rank higher than yours.
How To Get Free SSL
At one point, Google Chrome entirely greyed out your website and made visitors accept the risk of loading your website. Luckily, the July Chrome update was a little milder than expected. But, if your site is not secure, visitors will see a “not secure” notice next to your website address and a pop-up option that indicates “you should not enter any sensitive information on this website such as passwords or credit cards because it could be stolen by attackers.”
The only way to avoid this warning is to install an SSL certificate. To help ease this burden, all HostGator and Bluehost customers receive a free SSL certificate that is recognised and trusted by 99.9% of browsers and devices. By having this certificate, you will avoid a ‘not secure’ warnings when people visit your site.
The free SSL will be applied to your account automatically, but you do need to take a few steps to activate it. The steps vary a little bit based on which website platform you are using.
For Bluehost customers, follow this guide on how to activate the free SSL certificate on your server.
Hostgator customers follow the simple steps and have your certificate activated.
The free SSL will not come with any warranty or site logo. For these features, the free SSL must be upgraded to a Positive or EV Certificate