We believe this topic is mostly due to the facts “What is SSL”, “What is HTTPS” and “How to Setup SSL and HTTPS for WordPress”. We will be explaining these facts for you to have a thorough understanding and to perform well when these comes into play. Some of you may find these information “too much” for you little needs. But it’s better to know what you are doing and why you are doing.
What is SSL?
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) :- SSL is a protocol used to build a secured link between web server and a browser, or even with an application. This link ensures that all data transferred between the web server and browser remain private. This has become an industry standard and used by vast number of websites in the protection of online transactions with their customers. The complexities of the SSL remain invisible to the end users.
But browsers indicates with a sign that they are connected to a secured session through SSL.
Why the “S” in HTTPS Is Important to Your Website
Because “s” stands for secure. Many people are using SSL for their websites concerning the requirements of a better web. A better web?
While you are connecting to a server using HTTPS you are not just appending ’s’ to the end. It draws a big different between the two. Since HTTPS is used to provide an encrypted communication with a server more, specially your HTTP request is using SSL in order to send request and receive answers.
If you are running an eCommerce website and you are collecting payments, you need to purchase a SSL.
SSL is a requirement for most web browsers, with that being said it’s recommended that you use SSL even if your websites don’t handle sensitive communication. A better web has to be secured. So it’s time to make a move if you haven’t used SSL for your sites yet.
Benefits of Using SSL
Using SSL offers few benefits for both business party and end user. They are listed as below.
- Data integrity
- Attract more visitors/ customers
- Better search engine rankings
- Faster page load time with HTTP/2
- People will start to trust your website
How to Setup SSL and HTTPS for WordPress
As for the demonstration, there are 3 steps you need to accomplish in order to work your site with SSL.
- Purchase a SSL Certificate
- Install SSL Certificate in Your Server
- Setting up WordPress to Use SSL
1. Purchase a SSL Certificate
First, you need to purchase a SSL certificate. Some hosting providers give a free SSL certificate when you sign up for a specific plan or you can purchase a SSL certificate from Godaddy, Bluehost or SiteGround. You will have to pay $50-$200 depending on your SSL certificate type.
Also there is a free certificate authority called Let’s Encrypt, we will cover Let’s Encrypt tutorial in the near future. But as for now we will be going through installing of a paid certificate.
2. Install SSL Certificate in Your Server
SSL installation process is a quite difficult process because the process differs from host to host. Obviously you can install it all by yourself but we suggest to have your host install the SSL certificate for you.
How to install SSL using Let’s Encrypt free service. Upcoming article.
3. Setting up WordPress to Use SSL
Once you are done with installing SSL, there are still few changes left to do for your WordPress site in order to function better with SSL. But don’t forget to backup your entire site before moving forward.
First thing you should do after installing SSL in your domain is changing your url to use SSL. You can achieve that by going over to this page Settings > General.
As you can see there are two files for WordPress address and Site address. You can change the http to https and save the changes you made.
And the second thing is forcing Admin area to use SSL. To do that you can simple paste this code in your wp-config.php file.
Please note when you are editing the wp-config.php file make sure to place everything above the line where it says “/* That’s all, stop editing! Happy blogging. */”
Now we are setting up a 301 permanent redirect so all the traffic will be redirected to your new address with HTTPS instead of HTTP.
Edit the .htaccess or create a new file if you don’t have a .htaccess file in your site’s local path already. And paste the following code snippet
If You Are using google Analytics
Now you are all prepared to use SSL in WordPress. But there’s one last thing you should do before wrapping up. You should change your Google Analytics property to use HTTPS when collecting data.
Login to your Google Analytics, and them go to “Admin” panel from the list you can find on your left side. Click on the Property Settings tab in the Property tab.
There is an option called “Default URL”, click on the dropdown list and select HTTPS, then save the changes you made.
Congratulations! You have successfully installed SSL on your WordPress site.
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