SSL is a way of encrypting the traffic that comes to and from your site to keep your content, login information and personal information secure. Use of SSL security is vital for any website or online retailer that handles sensitive visitor information, such as credit card data. But these days, many businesses are choosing to encrypt their login and website administrative pages in order to secure usernames and passwords and minimize risk of hack.
Should your entire WordPress site be secured by SSL?
HTTPS (HTTP over SSL) consumes server resources and may slow down the website so some only force SSL for the WordPress login, administrative dashboard pages and other pages requesting sensitive information from visitors. Depending on your web server, this performance hit may not be that noticeable. You do have the option to secure your entire site if you desire. Base this decision on the sensitive nature of the content you serve and collect on your website.
Does Google rank secure websites higher?
Google has announced that it now uses HTTPS as a ranking signal but for now, it is a very lightweight factor. Currently SSL gives websites a very minimal ranking benefit but in time, this may strengthen. According to Google, high quality content and a site that is mobile friendly are still some of the top ranking factors and will continue to be.
If you are running an ecommerce website or capturing and storing private information such as customer names and personal contact information, use of SSL is highly recommended. Other website owners may implement SSL in order to encrypt only username and password pages or they may decide to secure the entire site. You will want to decide what pages to run securely based on your site’s content and the customer data you are capturing. The relatively low cost of SSL makes this an easy decision for most. Our recommendation is to encrypt, at a minimum, your website login page and administrative dashboard as well as any pages that capture sensitive information.