We are now in a position to be able to offer SSL certificates for PromoteMyPlace websites in order to migrate from http to https.
What is HTTPS?
HTTPS is a more secure version of HTTP.
The principal motivation for HTTPS is authentication of the accessed website and protection of the privacy and integrity of the exchanged data while in transit.
Why do you need it?
- It will provide an added layer of security for your website in particular the ‘Enquiries’ page. (If you are using online booking, it is already being served over https).
- Google’s Chrome browser will mark non-HTTPS sites as ‘not secure’ starting in July, which could have a detrimental impact on the number of enquiries you receive.
Why are we not just making all PromoteMyPlace websites https by default?
We will be making all new websites https, but because of the potential negative consequences that are outlined below, we can’t do a blanket update to existing websites.
First, we need to get confirmation from you that you are happy to proceed, knowing the potential negatives. We will them complete the process a few websites at a time, so that we can monitor results.
What you need to be aware of if you switch to https?
- Search Engine Ranking: The switch to HTTPS could have an initial negative impact on your rankings in Google while it works through the changes, but things should get back to normal shortly after.
- Mixed Content Issues: Mixed content occurs when a page is loaded over a secure HTTPS connection, but other resources, such as images, videos, stylesheets, scripts etc. are loaded over an insecure HTTP connection. Modern browsers display warnings about this type of content to indicate to the user that this page contains insecure resources. If you have embedded any HTML snippets from 3rd party websites and they are being served over HTTP rather than HTTPS you will get this warning in your browser. You need to make the URL for any 3rd party resources starts with https:// rather than http://.
- Social Media Counters: The bad news is that as soon as you change your URL from http to https you will lose all your social share counts. Social sites such as Facebook, Pinterest and Google+ treat each URL unique, including the protocol, so http://www.myvilla.com and https://www.myvilla.com will be seen as different URLs. However, we are looking into techniques to retrieve counts after the move. Just bear in mind that some of the techniques mentioned online do not work and it may not be possible to retrieve the counts.
What’s involved and will there be any downtime during the move?
No, there shouldn’t be any downtime for your website when migrating from http to https. We will apply an SSL certificate to your domain and then redirect all traffic from http URLs to their https equivalent.
What you need to do after the move:
Ideally, you need to let Google know that you’ve moved. Google sees a move to HTTPS as a site move with a change of URL, so you should log in to your Google Search Console account (if you have one) and add the https version of your website as a separate property from the http version. Then submit your sitemap again on the https version.
Instructions for adding a sitemap can be found here: https://promotemyplace.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/216229923-How-to-submit-an-XML-sitemap-to-Google-Search-Console-Bing-Webmaster-Tools
If you have Bing Webmaster Tools, you only need to re-submit your sitemap by following the instructions at the link above.
You can also update Google Analytics by following the instructions here: http://marketlytics.com/analytics-faq/moving-to-https-changes-required-in-google-analytics
Contact us if you would like to add SSL to your PromoteMyPlace website.