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HTTP vs HTTPS: What's the Difference?

Michael Ericsson
|
December 19, 2017

What is HTTP/HTTPS?

Information that flows from the server to the browser on regular HTTP URLs is not encrypted, which means that it's can easily to steal. When an "S" appears at the end of the "HTTP" part of a URL, it shows that the website is secure (HTTPS = Hypertext Transport Protocol Security). HTTPS uses an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Certificate, which creates a secure encrypted connection that protects potentially sensitive information.

Infographic showing the difference between HTTP vs HTTPS.

Increase Your Website Rankings

You might be thinking that if you are not running an e-commerce page or accepting sensitive information from your website's visitors, why host your site with HTTPS? Well, security isn't the only advantage. Using HTTPS can boost your SEO efforts as well because Google prioritizes secure sites. If your website is equal to your competitors' websites in speed, title tags, content freshness and all other aspects, but your competitors' websites are HTTPS, and yours is HTTP, Google will rank theirs ahead of yours.

Infographic showing increased SEO with Google.


Better Google Analytics Data

Analytics data is critical to understanding how visitors get to your website, how they navigate it, and how they use it. Knowing where you're getting your traffic from helps make decisions on optimization and ROI. If you know what source is providing the most valuable traffic, you can increase your budget targeting these sources and work on partnerships to increase traffic from them.

Using HTTPS for your websites makes Google Analytics more effective because HTTPS sites save the security data from the websites that referred to your site. With HTTP sites, referral sources will only appear as "direct traffic."

Infographic showing better Google Analytics data.


Customer Trust

Users trust secure connections more. Because an HTTPS site encrypts all communication, visitors' sensitive information—like password and credit card information, and even browser history—is protected. Knowing that anything they download, sign up for, or purchase won't put them at risk builds trust, which is vital to generating leads and closing sales.

Infographic showing customer trust with secure HTTPS.

Setting Up Your Site With HTTPS

Setting up your site with HTTPS is relatively easy. All our sites are hosted on Webflow's servers at Amazon, and we take care of getting your SSL Certificates and making sure they are renewed annually.