Google has officially announced their deadline for when websites must begin using HTTPS.
If your site is not in HTTPS, then starting in July 2018 visitors using Chrome to access your site will begin to see prominent warnings in the URL field (a.k.a. the omnibox) letting them know that your site is not secure.
This is a very big change that could have a major impact on how you reach your audience. More than half of all Internet visitors use Google’s Chrome browser. In some countries, that number soars to 70%-80%. If your site isn’t using HTTPS yet, now’s the time to make the switch.
Why these changes should matter to you
While Google isn’t saying they’ll keep users from accessing your site entirely (yet), the warnings will definitely make users think twice before spending any time on your site—and just as likely, make them turn away.
This is especially problematic if you use your site for lead generation. If you rely on forms to capture critical information like email addresses and telephone numbers to generate and nurture your leads, your users will be far less likely to submit their information.
Google’s changes stand to have a massively negative impact on your site’s user experience if you aren’t prepared.
Why is HTTPS so important?
While HTTPS was once primarily reserved to secure data transfers that included sensitive information (think banking, and credit card processing for eCommerce), its use has increased across major sites over the past several years, making it practically the de facto protocol. Today, HTTPS is widely available for every site, regardless of content, size, or user interaction.
HTTPS is now so commonplace that most Internet users are savvy enough look for it in the URL window when a site is asking for sensitive information such as credit card data, or for a username and password to log in.
What should you do?
Security is on everyone’s mind these days. Keeping personal information safe is a priority for every site visitor, not just online shoppers. Not using HTTPS after the July 2018 deadline will definitely have a negative impact on key metrics like advertising impressions, lead generation, and online sales.
It’s a good idea to start considering making the switch now. In some cases, there may be a cost involved to use the HTTPS protocol. But ensuring that your visitors stay engaged and interact with your site will undoubtedly offset that cost over the long run.
If upgrading to HTTPS is something you need to explore, StitchDX can help. Feel free to contact us anytime. And if you’re wondering if your site can be working harder for you, download our ebook: 10 Critical Questions You Should Ask About Your Website.