When shoppers reach an insecure site, warning bells may go off in their heads. That queasy feeling intensifies when you land on an HTTP:// site where you had planned to make a purchase or share any of your personal information. Seeing an invalid SSL certificate, or no SSL certificate at all, is a dealbreaker for many shoppers.

Close to 67% of shoppers polled said they would refuse to shop on an e-commerce site missing an SSL certificate. Another study put that number higher, with 84% of users saying they would abandon a purchase if the connection weren’t secure.

On the other hand, if you build trust by showing you care about protecting your customers’ data, you may earn customers for life. That’s how closely consumer loyalty is connected with customer security and data protection.

Security’s Impact

It’s incredibly hard to bounce back and rebuild consumer loyalty after a data breach. One study showed that publicly held companies that experienced a data breach underperformed the market more than 15% two years later. The impact is even more significant on small businesses, and they experience 28% of all data breaches. According to a study by IBM, data breaches cost companies $1.42 million in lost business.

Consider these additional statistics regarding consumer loyalty and data breaches:

  • 78% of internet users would stop engaging with a brand online following a breach
  • 36% would stop engaging with that brand offline, such as in brick-and-mortar locations
  • 49% of people would not sign up for an online app or service if it recently experienced a data breach

Considering that a brand’s online activities can easily have offline ramifications, maintaining security on your website or mobile app becomes more important than ever.

What Is The First Step in Developing an E-Commerce Security Plan?

A valid SSL certificate — and the encryption that comes with it — represents the first step of a successful e-commerce security plan. SSL certificates are mandatory for any e-commerce site that takes payment via credit card. But it’s a good idea for any company to obtain SSL certificates as the first line of defense against malware attacks, hackers, and cyberthieves.

What Is An SSL Certificate?

An SSL, or secure sockets layer, certificate shows your website uses encryption technology to create a safe connection between a website and the browser. The SSL certificate contains information about the website owners and shows site visitors you’re using this technology to keep their data protected.

Sites with a valid SSL certificate are shown with an HTTPS:// designation in the browser bar and a small green padlock. Additionally, if a site is not secure, visitors using Google Chrome may receive a warning and will have to click that they accept the risks before being directed to the site.

Additional Benefits of SSL Certificates to Build Consumer Loyalty

In addition to giving customers peace-of-mind when they’re transmitting their personal data to purchase on your site, SSL certificates help improve consumer loyalty in other ways, too. Not only are customers more likely to visit a site with SSL protections in place, but they will feel comfortable sharing that site with friends in their network. Today, people care about their online reputations and hesitate to share a link to a site without SSL encryption in place.

A valid SSL certificate can also increase your site speed. Page-load speed plays a role in e-commerce conversions and consumer loyalty, especially when people shop from their smartphones. In a recent study done by Think With Google, consumers were 10% more willing to recommend an e-commerce site to friends if page-load speed dropped from 13 seconds to 10 seconds. A page-load speed of just 3 seconds led to 26% more people willing to recommend the site.

Consumer Loyalty and Google Rankings

While having a valid SSL certificate can slightly boost Google rankings, not having one can tremendously hurt search engine rankings. It’s a cascade effect: Not having a valid SSL certificate tells Google your site is not trustworthy. Lower rankings mean fewer site visitors, further eroding rankings (and sales as a result). Even if visitors do reach your site, they might bounce faster if they don’t see that security seal.

EasyRedir can help you manage SSL certificates for your redirects. With automatically provisioned and renewed SSL certificates, you won’t have to worry about security issues. Contact us today to learn more, or start your free trial now.

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