How To Install An SSL Certificate On WordPress

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Before shopping at a new site, most people access how safe it is before entering in their credit card. With any doubts, they might abandon their cart, causing that business to lose the sale. Having a secure website is essential for website owners running an eCommerce site, collecting secure information, or accepting credit cards. Many people will rely on SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Certificate, which enables HTTPS and keeps all information safe and not transferred in plain text. Not only can your website users shop or visit your site with confidence, but it can also help increase your SEO.

What Is An SSL Certificate

An SSL Certificate helps to encrypt communication between the browser and the server. This global standard security technology means that all information passed between websites and its users is secure and encrypted. In the past, only eCommerce sites or sites that collected personal information would use an SSL certificate. However, now it has become common practice since Google started to encourage all websites to utilize an SSL Certificate.

You can check to see if a website has an SSL Certificate by looking by the URL. If you see the lock, it means it is secure.

How Much Does An SSL Certificate Cost?

When you start shopping around for an SSL certificate, you’ll realize that the price will vary depending on the vendor. The price will also depend on what level of security you need—the price for a standard SSL certificate for a personal certificate will be much less than the one an eCommerce site will need.

Some hosting providers will also offer a free SSL certificate to clients, so before purchasing one, check to see what your hosting provider might offer.

How To Install An SSL Certificate On WordPress

Even if you are a new WordPress site owner, installing an SSL Certificate on WordPress is relatively simple. However, before we get too far into the process, it is important to note that you technically won’t be installing it onto your WordPress site; instead, what you are doing is installing it on the server that hosts your website. You’ll be optimizing your settings so your WordPress site can properly use the SSL certificate. Here are a few different methods you can use to install an SSL Certificate on WordPress.

How To Install A Free SSL Certificate On WordPress using Let’s Encrypt

Let’s Encrypt is a free, automated, and open certificate authority provided by the Internet Security Research Group (ISRG). This organization gives people access to SSL certificates for free because they wanted to create a more secure internet.

The benefits of choosing this option include :

 

  • Free and accessible. Anyone with a domain can use a Let’s Encrypt SSL Certificate for free. 
  • Automatic renewal. You don’t have to keep your SSL certificate up to date because it will automatically be renewed for you.
  • Secure. Your site will be protected because Let’s Encrypt employs TLS security best practices.

 

Depending on your hosting provider, you will have different options available. To generate your SSL certificate, you will have to have at least one live domain name. Check with your hosting provider on how you can install your SSL Certificate on your website using Let’s Encrypt.

How To Install A Custom SSL Certificate On WordPress

If you need a more powerful or customizable SSL Certificate, you might need to use a custom SSL Certificate.

 

  • Purchase an SSL certificate. You can get an SSL certificate from various sources, including Trustwave, Thawte, DigiCert, Comodo, and GeoTrust. Before you spend money on a certificate, make sure that your hosting provider can support the SSL certificate. 
  • Provide the server type. As you buy your new certificate, you’ll have to provide the server type. Check with your hosting provider on what its web servers are.
  • Generate CSR and private key. To create the certificate file, you’ll need to generate a CSR code. To do so, fill out this form. While we do recommend that you fill out as much of the form as possible, you should—at a minimum—fill out the following:

 

    • Common name (write your domain name like *.domain.com if you are generating a wildcard certificate)
    • Email Address
    • Organization
    • City / Locality
    • State / County / Region
    • Country

Once you have completed the form, it will generate a key and CSR for you. Save both of these because you will need it later.

 

  • Regenerate Your SSL Certificate. Upload the CSR with your SSL provider to regenerate the certificate. 

 

Depending on your hosting provider, the following steps might vary. On your hosting provider’s dashboard, you’ll likely have to navigate to the Tools Tab and the SSL Certificate section. The best practice is to reach out to your customer support representatives to guide you through their particular process.

  1. Redirect to HTTPS. Once you have installed the SSL certificate, you will have to redirect all your pages from HTTP to HTTPS. Making sure that this step is done correctly is crucial because it might cause your SEO rankings to tank if a mistake is made. To do so, you need to update the .htaccess file with:

    1. <IfModule mod_rewrite.c> 2. RewriteEngine On 3. RewriteCond %{SERVER_PORT} 80 4. RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://www.yoursite.com/$1 [R,L] 5. </IfModule>

    For those with an Nginx server, you should use:

    1. server { 2. listen 80; 3. server_name yoursite.com www.yoursite.com; 4. return 301 https://yoursite.com$request_uri; 5. }

Now, your WordPress site has a custom SSL Certificate and is safe and secure!

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