SEO Glossary: SSL Certificate


In a nutshell: What is an SSL certificate?

An SSL certificate ensures that a website is accessed in encrypted form. This means that sensitive data such as name, address and bank details are transmitted securely without third parties gaining access. SSL certificates are now a must in order to rank well on Google and other search engines.

What is an SSL certificate?

The abbreviation SSL stands for "Secure Sockets Layer" and is an encryption protocol. It ensures that data is exchanged securely between the website and the user's computer. This prevents unauthorized persons such as fraudsters from gaining access. New certificates now even work with the newer TLS (Transport Layer Security).

A look at the SSL certificate itself shows that this is a data record. It contains information such as the name of the issuer, serial number and fingerprints (also known as fingerprints). SSL certificates are also available in various file formats.

It is easy to find out whether a website has an SSL connection: Simply open the website and look for the small lock symbol in the address bar on the far left. If it is shown closed, there is a secure SSL connection. However, if the lock is open and/or marked red and crossed out, no secure connection is active.

It is now an important ranking factor for search engines such as Google to use an SSL certificate. For this reason, SEOs and webmasters are advised to obtain a certificate as soon as possible.

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How does encryption with an SSL certificate work?

In order to encrypt data securely, many SSL certificates work with a so-called public key infrastructure. Two keys are used here: the public key and the private key.

While the public key encrypts the message on one side, the private key decrypts it on the other. It is fully encrypted during transmission. Various functions and methods are available for using encryption keys.

One of these is the AES (Advanced Encryption Standard). This standard is widely used and is revised at regular intervals to keep fraudsters and hackers at bay.


Why is an SSL certificate required?

In the past, there have been an increasing number of data breaches on the internet. This makes it all the more important for surfers to ensure that data is transmitted securely and under lock and key.

In order to build trust with your own website visitors, an SSL connection is therefore indispensable nowadays. But also in terms of search engine optimization SSL now also plays an important role. As already mentioned, search engines such as Google attach great importance to encrypted connections from domains to users. If SEOs use certificates, this has a positive effect on the ranking.

Where can I get an SSL certificate and how is it integrated?

There are various ways to obtain an SSL certificate online. When webmasters register a new server or a web hosting package, many providers now include an SSL function.

With just a few clicks, the domain is linked to an SSL certificate in the dashboard and the secure connection is established. This does not require the integration of private and public keys.

Hosting providers also differ in terms of price. While some charge money for certificates, others offer free certificates from Let's Encrypt, for example.

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Conclusion on the topic of SSL certificates

If webmasters and SEOs do not yet have an SSL certificate, they should do their homework as soon as possible. This is because encrypted connections are now a must in order to make a trustworthy impression on both users and search engines and achieve good rankings.


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