Let’s Encrypt – Free SSL Certificate For Your Website

Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com

In this post, I’m introducing a totally FREE and ESSENTIAL feature that your website must implement as soon as possible. Did you ever hear about SSL, authority certificates, encryption and HTTPS? Let’s Encrypt is the new free SSL Certificate for your website.

  • What is Let’s Encrypt? 

Let’s Encrypt is a FREE certificate authority (CA) that issues domain-validated security certificates.

  • What is a security certificate?

A security certificate (SSL) is a small data file that, when installed to your website, activates the padlock and the https protocol and allows secure connections from your website to a browser. In simple English, makes your site TRUSTABLE.

  • Why do I need a security certificate?

Since a couple of years now, Google is rewarding those websites that have a secure connection giving them better ranking in the search results (HTTPS as a ranking signal and Indexing HTTPS pages by default).

As a user, it is not uncommon to choose an https:// page over a simple http://, especially if you are looking to buy something or giving out personal information such as emails, addresses and other sensitive data…

Now SiteGround is offering this certificate for FREE. If you are thinking to move your website to another host, take a look at this guide first How To Migrate WordPress Website Easy and Simple.


The Guide

You can easily install this FREE SSL certificate on your website in a couple of minutes.

First, check the status of your website. In your browser, open an incognito window and go to your website. If you notice in the URL bar, you should see a blank page icon on the left of your domain name. If you click on it, it will give you some information about the status of the connection to the website.

If your site looks like this, it means that you have a not encrypted connection (http)

HTTP Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com


Following this guide, your site will look like this

HTTPS Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com


Let’s Start!


Login to your SiteGround account and go to cPanel

cPanel Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com


Scroll down to almost the bottom and under Security look for Let’s Encrypt icon and click on it.

ICON Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com

Choose the domain you want to install the Certificate and then click Install. Wait until the installation ends.

INSTALL Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.comINSTALL END Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com


At this point, you have the certificate correctly installed on your website.

Go to your Dashboard >Settings >General

Insert the https:// instead of http:// in the fields “WordPress Address (URL)” and “Site Address (URL)” then save the changes.

SETTINGS Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com


Install the free and light plugin called WordPress HTTPS by Mike Ems. This will work in the background and redirect all the http:// resources to be loaded through https://. You don’t have to set anything, just install it and activate.

Don’t worry if the plugin is not being updated for so long, I tested it and currently using on different websites.

After installing it, check your website and you’ll see the green lock. If you still don’t see the green lock, clear the cache of your browser or open your website from an Incognito Window.


Problem

  • I see the https:// but I don’t see the green lock

If after the procedure, your website is still having the blank page beside the URL, or some of the images looks corrupted, like the picture below

HTTPS PROBLEM Let's Encrypt - Free SSL Certificate For Your Website - letskillthenoise.com

it means that your website is using some encrypted resources and some not encrypted (but if you installed the previous plugin this shouldn’t happen).

You have to edit a file called .htaccess. The SiteGround staff can do the work for you:

Open a support ticket and ask the SiteGround staff to add these 3 lines to your .htaccess file:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} !=on
RewriteRule .* https://www.yourdomain.com%{REQUEST_URI} [R,L]

Be sure to change “www.yourdomain.com” with the name of your domain.

If you are using a domain name without “www”, use these 3 lines instead:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} !=on
RewriteRule .* https://yourdomain.com%{REQUEST_URI} [R,L]

Be sure to change “yourdomain.com” with the name of your domain.

If you want to do it yourself, the file is in the main folder of your site, in the FTP.

Thanks to SiteGround for this FREE, important improvement!

Are you still getting the blank page? If you need more help, just leave a message below I’ll be more than happy to help you!



3 thoughts on “Let’s Encrypt – Free SSL Certificate For Your Website

  1. Tim Rawlins

    Thanks Alessio. The process was quick and easy. I was finished in no time with zero problems. The Siteground crew jumped on it, and it was like, bam! Done. Its easy to see why Siteground is the way to go.

    Reply
    1. Alessio Post author

      You are welcome!
      This certificate it really important and will made a website standing out from the crowd. On other hosting, I had to pay $80 for the same…
      ~Alessio

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *