Have you ever noticed that green padlock in the address bar of your browser?
Do you know why it’s there?
Well, the simple answer has to do with encryption, and encryption is security. The only way to get the green padlock is to have an SSL certificate properly installed on your website.
The SSL certificate simply allows visitors to view your site using the more secure prefix
https:// instead of the insecure and non-encrypted version
Take a minute and open a second browser window and check your website using https://yourdomainname.com (not
Do you see a green padlock? If not, keep reading.
The two main reasons why your website needs to be encrypted is for SEO and security.
Without going into the technical details of SEO and security, it’s enough to say that it gives your visitor added confidence when surfing your site, and Google loves security.
As far as surfing the web goes, it’s nice to see the security icon up there, but more importantly, you need to make sure your site is properly configured with the green padlock. The scary truth is that if you don’t have one little icon, you are losing traffic – and that’s serious.
In fact, Google Chrome requires the green padlock (SSL certificate). If you don’t have it, the browser will show your visitors a nasty and scary alert page that will chase your visitors away.
Chrome labels HTTP pages with a red triangle to draw further attention to the unsecure nature of the connection. HTTP sites have a small icon that you could click for more information; if you did click it, you can read “Your connection to this site is not secure. You should not enter any sensitive information on this site (for example, passwords or credit cards), because it could be stolen by attackers.” So, essentially this label is indeed a security measure, but as far as first time visitors are concerned, it is a warning – leave here and never come back!
Ok, now you understand what it is and why you need it. The next question is how do I fix this? Don’t worry, it really is an easy fix.How do you get the green padlock on your website? Click To Tweet
But before I get to the “fix” let’s understand what’s broken.
I know I said I won’t get into the technical details of security, but it needs to be mentioned that any information a user shares via your website is susceptible to being intercepted or stolen. Basically, any information shared online in forms, any passwords, or payment information can be stolen if it’s not secure. If you don’t have the green padlock, your encryption is broken and needs to be fixed.
Which is better http or https? (And which am I using?)
The next thing that’s often broken is if there are multiple versions of your website online.
Again, open a new browser window and type in your domain name 4 different ways.
All of these should redirect you to the same URL, usually https://yourdomain.com
Did they all redirect to the same URL or did each one open the same way that you typed it?
If they didn’t redirect, you need to fix that.
It’s important that you only have one version of your website.
If they don’t redirect, technically you have 4 versions of your website that Google is indexing and this is not good for SEO, and this needs to be fixed.
Why do I see a mixed content warning?
Moving on, another thing that you will likely need to fix is mixed content. If you view your site using
https:// and there is not a padlock, or worse, the page looks broken, you have mixed content errors. You’ll see this when you try to force
https:// version of your site and all of a sudden the images are missing, the layout is messed up, and there’s no styling.
This happens because you have some files and images that are being hosted on
http:// instead of
Any resources that are hosted on
http:// will not render properly when viewed on
You need to go through your files, templates, and code to see which assets are mixed and you need to change them from
This can take some time and you’ll need FTP access and a code editor in order to get things fixed.
How to fix the WordPress dashboard settings when you install SSL
The last thing you need to check is in the settings in your WordPress dashboard. You need to make sure to designate the
https:// version of your site.
This is very easy to do if you know where to find the setting in the dashboard.
Simply log into your WordPress dashboard as an Administrator and look for the “Settings” section.
In the General tab, you’ll see two fields that need to include the
https:// in the domain name, like this – https://yourdomainname.com
- WordPress Address (URL)
- Site Address (URL)
The easy way to properly install an SSL certificate
So… about that easy fix.
All of these errors can be fixed relatively easily using “inspect element” in your browser, using your .htaccess file to manage the redirects, and populating fields in your dashboard area.
There are several articles online to help teach you how to do this if you’re the “do it yourself” kind of person and you like to spend time researching and following tutorials.
But the easiest way to fix your SSL is to ask us to help.
We offer a fast and affordable service that will fix all the errors discussed above. When we’re done, your site will be encrypted, secure, and trustworthy.
Remember, if you don’t have the green padlock on your site, your visitors will know the site is not secure and browsers will even display a warning that this site is not secure, and that looks pretty scary to most visitors. This will cost you revenue in the long run.
Where do I get an SSL Certificate?
If you host with Wiser Sites, your SSL certificate is free with your hosting.
Just host with us, type https://yourdomain.com, fix the errors discussed above (or ask us to do it for you) and you are good to go.
Again, if you want help fixing the errors, there is a one-time investment of $85, and we will make sure that your website is SSL compliant, make sure the site is clean, and make sure that your encryption is working properly.
Your site will be safe and will look just like you want it to without broken images or odd layouts.
It’s the smart thing to do.
It’s the wiser thing to do.
If you have any questions contact us, call us, or add comments below.