Getting your site up and running with an SSL Certificate is a process that takes a bit of effort but pays off with increased confidence in your site's secruity and prevents any future ranking issues with contact or login forms your visitors have to interact with. Below is a brief guide on what to be aware of when making the switch to an HTTPS secured site. It's by no means exhaustive but it should give your a good starting point on what you'll need to look out for.
- Purchase an SSL Certificate. If you're hosted by us we'll handle the installation.
- Keep a backup of your site files and databases before you make any changes.
- Enable HTTPS or SSL functionality for your website's software if it's available.
- Edit site resource links and internal site links from HTTP to HTTPS.
- Update your htaccess file to redirect to your HTTPS site.
- If you make use of a CDN service make sure you use their HTTPS setting to maintain site security.
- Update any paid ads or email marketing links to the HTTPS version of your site.
- Update Google Search Console, Analytics, and any other tools you may use to track your site's performance.
We cover a number of these steps and provide examples in our SSL/HTTPS Primer and HTTP to HTTPS Best Practices knowledgebase articles but do keep in mind that you may run into issues that require creative solutions and work arounds especially when dealing with resources hosted on websites that might not have HTTPS versions available.
For an even more indepth look at all of the steps we recommend Search Engine Land's handy HTTP to HTTPS SEO Guide, an exhaustive take on the subject.