Google SEO and Switching to HTTPS
We all know that switching to https results in a positive jump in Google SEO or search engine ranking. Google said as much way back in Aug 2014.
According to Search Engine Land, Google said that based on their initial tests the HTTPS signal showed “positive results” in terms of relevancy and ranking in Google’s search results.
So then Switching to HTTPS is Good, Right?
Yes, if you do it right. No, if you don’t.
Why do I say that? Switching to https is not ONE simple step but a series of steps which need to be done right.
What have you got to lose after the switch? Your current search engine ranking can be completely lost. So please pay extra attention during the switch!
What can go wrong? After switching to https your website has to load correctly. Its very easy to have non-functioning links or links that still load via http.
Also, Google sees your https website as a whole new website! So you need to make the switch in a way that Google knows that it is the same website but enhanced with https.
What is the Right Way to Switch to HTTPS?
Make sure that all pages of the website load properly and only load using https.
Especially look for and change all links that used http to load scripts, images and videos on each web page. Then ensure that the web pages redirects to the https versions if anyone tries to access them using http.
If you have a CMS like WordPress you need to ensure that it handles the switch in resource links correctly. You can also evaluate plugins to force https access from this list.
When linking to your https website from another location make sure your use the URL with https:// so that you don’t lose http referer info.
Google has also listed some best practices when implementing https that you should be sure to read.