• http://www.schooldigger.com Pete Claar

    Matt will have to have a discussion with the AdSense team before trumpeting this any more. I moved my site to https and took a 30-40% pay cut in my AdSense earnings. The response from Google was that many ads are not enabled for https, and therefore there’s less auction pressure and therefore lower earnings. Also, another popular 3rd party ad network doesn’t support https at all, so I had to remove them. I’d love to have my site 100% https but frankly can’t afford to do so.

  • Durant Imboden

    That might make sense for e-commerce sites, but for information sites? I’m skeptical. Is there a need for encryption on Buddy’s Blog or even NYTimes.com? What about the logistics and the prevention of unexpected consequences for Google, users, and site owners?

  • Andrew Shotland

    Perhaps Matt hasn’t spoken with my clients who complain when they see their https URLs in the SERPs as they think that people are less likely to click on them :)


    Is the motivation to make a more secure web or to escalate the cost of and therefore hamper the ‘churn and burn’ spam model? As pointed out, this really does not make sense for any website that is meant to be a true resource.

    For example a possible scenario might be that niche information, learning and knowledge based sites would potentially be pushed down in the SERP’s in favor of stores in the same space with high commercial intent… That doesn’t seem like a good move, for users or for Google.

  • jnffarrell1

    Security will come. First the homing pigeons (Reuters), then. the smoke signals will be encrypted, then the telegraph…. finally Ad Worlds. Google has fired a warning shot. Don’t lock in unsecure changes to your web-site that you will have to tear out later.

  • http://automateeverything.tumblr.com/ Adam Buchanan

    Why would people be less likely to click on HTTPS listings?

  • Thomas

    maybe they think that the s means spam or shady lol… i would bet the average user has no idea what https is.

  • http://adambeau.com Adam Beau

    Meh..Paying over $50 dollars a year to SSL websites that don’t sell products, seems kind of a waste of money, especially if you have a lot of websites. If they apply this towards e-commerce sites only, sure, fine by me. Every website? NO. If a site has been hacked fine, but when a perfectly healthy site is dinged in search because of a lack of SSL…stupid.

  • http://www.seo-theory.com/ Michael Martinez

    It’s starting to look like helping users find the content they want to find is no longer a priority for Google. That is a shame.

  • http://alex-hemedinger.blogspot.com/ Alexander Hemedinger

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Google acquired their own certificates for better rankings, haha! Everyone would jump on board. :)

  • Andrew Shotland

    I think it’s something like that. I thought it was kind of a strange reaction as I typically don’t notice such things. I am more concerned if it shows in the SERP as a pdf :)

  • http://localreachlabs.com/ Russell Hayes

    Google doesn’t make a move unless there’s money in it for them somewhere and this is just another example.

  • Jon Hogg

    More likely they’ll just have a more prominent badge in SERP when a site is SSL, to encourage the click, a bit like rich snippets

  • http://www.22by4.com/ Sundeep Reddy

    I don’t think anyone has time to check for https/http in SERPs :P

  • http://www.webmaisterpro.com/ Kaloyan Banev

    For me it makes a lot of sense. Though I simply don’t understand how this bug was undiscovered since 3/4 of webservers run OpenSSL

  • Peter Watson

    Doesn’t seem fair to give a rankings boost to sites with SSL over sites that do not need SSL. Matt also said site speed would be a factor as well, and I’m yet to see any ranking boost for speedy sites. I can say the same for responsive sites too. I’m the only site in my niche that is responsive and I’m not seeing any love for it from Google (as Matt said).

    Customers love it though! :-)

  • http://trung.tran.com.au/ Trung Tran

    If the SSL is out of date or doesn’t match the domain then the browser will throw an error. This would confuse most average users. SSL has its place for websites but the entire web should not have to get a SSL to be rewarded by Google.

  • http://www.tylerherrick.com Tyler Herrick

    I also had a client that was upset that their HTTPS variant was showing in the SERP. I was a bit perplexed, but resolved the issue by getting it removed from results. I’ve also wondered lately if it’s good to start thinking about moving to a completely secure site, but I’m only now starting to grasp the intricacies involved.

  • http://sozodesign.co.uk/ Christian Goodrich

    If Google did start to favour websites with superior security, then I wonder if this would be an advantage to websites built with a bespoke CMS vs off-the-shelf e.g. WordPress, Joomla, etc.

  • http://investorjunkie.com/ Investor Junkie

    If Google was really concerned about security, why not do basic port scanning tests on the web site in question? SSL != secure.

  • http://www.neurowebmarketing.co.uk/ Reece

    It’s interesting that SSL would be prioritised seeing as it typically
    slows down browsing. So which takes precedence for ranking – faster or
    more secure?