SEO Glossary: SSL Certificate

In a nutshell: What is an SSL certificate?

An SSL certificate ensures that the call of a website is encrypted. 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 with Google and Co.

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. Unauthorized persons such as fraudsters thus do not gain 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 record. This contains information such as the name of the issuer, serial number and fingerprints (also known as fingerprints). In addition, SSL certificates are 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.

Meanwhile, it is an important ranking factor for search engines like Google to use an SSL certificate. For this reason, SEOs and webmasters are advised to take care of a certificate as soon as possible.


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How does encryption work with an SSL certificate?

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. During transmission, it is completely encrypted. To use encoding keys, there are various functions and methods to choose from.

One of them is the AES (Advanced Encryption Standard). This standard is widely used and is revised periodically to keep out fraudsters and hackers.


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 transferred 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 do I get an SSL certificate and how is it integrated?

There are various ways to obtain an SSL certificate on the web. 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: What is an SSL certificate?

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

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