Google has released the new Chrome browser version 62, which is estimated to affect 60% of Web browsers. One of the primary focus of this update is a warning related to missing or improperly configured security certificates. Users who access any website, which does not have an HTTPS certificate installed, will be notified that the website is considered “Not Secure”.
This means that if a website does not have a properly set up or configured security certificate, there can be negative rank and organic traffic consequences as this warning will undoubtedly have an impact on visitor behavior. Many consumers will conclude the site they are accessing is corrupt or suspicious and navigate away. This will ultimately cause a decrease in customer trust, loyalty, rankings, traffic, and conversions. As the Google algorithm measures and ranks sites based on “bounce rate”, “page speed” and secure HTTPS status, inaction will have a substantial negative influence on your current SEO strategy. It is in your best interest to make sure you follow the right steps to implement a security certificate and include a post-implementation analysis to ensure proper re-indexing by Google.
gShift has created an infographic outlining some basic facts about website security and highlighting common missteps to consider when moving forward with HTTPS. Have a look:
SEO Impact of HTTP vs HTTPS
Previously Certificates were only required for websites collecting sensitive personal or financial information.
Since 2014, it’s been proven sites using (HTTPS) perform better in search engine rankings. Many businesses have converted their websites over the years to HTTPS, however, there are still a significant portion of websites without a certificate applied or those which have been implemented incorrectly.
Regardless of the new Chrome update, it is simply best practice to have a certificate on your site as part of your successful SEO strategy.
A secondary SEO impact associated with the Chrome update is related to a component of the Google algorithm which measures and ranks sites based on “bounce rate”. If a user with the new Chrome browser comes across your site and receives a message about your site being “Not Secure”, the majority of users will likely hit the back button and go back to the search results. This is considered a bounce. The more times people bounce from your site, the more Google sees this as a bad user experience, which in turn, will negatively affect your rankings.
In short, this is all bad for those who are not prepared.