Understanding SSL certificates

What is an SSL Certificate?

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and is used to keep your internet connection safe and secure. SSL is the standard for implementing a secure and encrypted link through your website. Keeping any sensitive data and information sent between two systems secure and preventing anyone from reading and modifying this information transferred between the two systems from performing any criminal acts with this information. It ensures that visitors can trust your website to protect their user identity, details and safety.

Why do I need an SSL?

An SSL Certificate encrypts user data from their browser to a website, ed banking/online shopping. This is also applicable for email, the content will be encrypted and sent to the desired recipient.

Having a creative, user-friendly and informative website is not enough, to drive traffic and increase sales on your website, you need to make sure that your site offers security and authenticity. Clients and potential clients want to invest in something they can trust. This is especially important as the internet today is full of Cyber threats, hackers disguised as clients. When visitors trust, they are likely to reveal their personal information, help verify their identities. This works especially well if you have a contact page on your website.

How do I know if my site is secure with an SSL?

Your site URL will have “https” as the prefix instead of “http”, this indicates the domain is secure and an SSL Certificate is loaded (The S stands for secure). Sometimes the URL bar is a colour, Green is secure, red is not. You can also click the padlock icon in the URL search bar. A pop-up box will appear, select “Valid” under the “Certificate” to check the expiration date of the SSL.

Tip. Keeping payment information secure on your site is not only important but will also boost your ranking with Google search engines SEO.


  • How do I get an SSL certificate installed?
    Email, specify the domain name and request the type of certificate you require. You will receive an email once the certificate has been loaded.
  • What types of SSL certificates can I get?
    There are two categories of SSL certificates. One is a free Auto SSL and the other is a paid for SSL.
  • What is the difference between the Auto free SSL and the Paid for SSL?
    1. Auto SSL (Free)
    Valid for 3 months.
    Issued by
    Not recommended for e-commerce websites.
    No company info in cert - Less trust.

    2. Geotrust SSL (Paid)
    Valid for 1 Year.
    Issued by Geotrust.
    Highly recommended for e-commerce websites.
    Company information displayed.
    Requires a dedicated IP - this comes at a cost (per annum or per month).

    The paid SSL certificate has two options:
    Standard SSL: This covers your -eg:
    Wildcard SSL: This covers an unlimited number of subdomains above the function of the standard SSL.
  • Do I need an SSL for my domain only?
    An SSL certificate is loaded onto your domain and filters to your email however if you only have emails hosted you can request it for that only.
  • How long is an SSL certificate valid for?
    A Free Certificate is valid for 3 months.
    A Paid SSL certificate must be renewed annually.

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