Offsite changes to make after switching to SSL

Wirenut

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Oct 26, 2019
Messages
50
My local service area business's website is on GoDaddy and I just setup for them to add an SSL certificate to my website and make all the changes ($149 for 1 year of managed SSL, seemed like a good deal). They said that they would take care of all the changes to make the website work, but I am worried about all of the other changes that I need to make.

About the website: It's a small website with 15 pages including some town based landing pages and another 20 pages of blog articles. No shopping cart, no purchasing thru the site. One basic contact form on the Contact page.

1) Are there any other changes that I will have to make on the website for SEO purposes? (since GoDaddy techs will only get it up and running, not tweak it for SEO)

2) What needs to be done offsite?

As for #2, I know that I have to change it to https inside of GMB and also add the https domain in Search Console.

What else needs to be changed when switching to SSL?

Thank you so much for the help!
 
Last edited:

Wirenut

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Oct 26, 2019
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They are done with setting up the SSL, took them less than 30 minutes. I see that they added this to the htaccess file:

Code:
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^(www\.)?mysite\.com$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://mysite.com/$1 [L,R=301]
</IfModule>
Should I add "www." to it since that is always what my site used and what's in Search Console?

Edit: I added www. to the RewriteRule URL and it works well still. The entire website is working perfectly. The sitemap URL's have all been changed. I added the https URL in Search Console and GMB. Now I just need to work on the surrounding stuff to keep it's position and not lose my current rankings.
 
Last edited:

djbaxter

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1. The only changes needed are the redirect script added by GoDaddy. If you use the www. version for your site, then yes... change the RewriteRule line to read RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://www.mysite.com/$1 [L,R=301].

2. Yes, change it to the https version in GMB, Search Console, and Google Analytics. You can change them in any directories you use but it isn't really needed since you have the redirect. If you have your site listed with Bing, you will need to make similar changes to your account there.

3. Since it's a WordPress, you should check for mixed content issues, e.g., images or links on your site that are hardcoded to the http versions.

Check your site/pages at:




These should also tell you what is triggering the mixed content on your page or site.
 

Wirenut

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Oct 26, 2019
Messages
50
Wow, thanks for the awesome response!

So I did exactly as you said.

I added www. to the RewriteRule
I changed the URL to https in GMB, SC, and Analytics.
I changed the URL in other directories and bigger sites like Yelp, Facebooks, Bing, etc.
I verified the website on those 3 sites that you linked to, all 3 says that it is good!

So is that it? That was easy! I assume next year I can get away with just buying the SSL cert from GoDaddy and not having to pay for the managed SSL service.

Do you think my rankings will take a hit for a while now?
 

djbaxter

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Shouldn't affect your rankings, or if it does at all it won't be for long. Everything is redirected (you can check that yourself by typing the http:// version into your browser). And yes, all you need to do is make sure your certificate doesn't expire. :)
 

Wirenut

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Oct 26, 2019
Messages
50
I have a question about Search Console.

Now that I added my website I have these listed as my properties:

Code:
1) mysite.com (Domain property)

2) http://mysite.com/

3) http://www.mysite.com/

4) https://www.mysite.com/
As of right now all of the information shows for #3 and also #1.

I assume as time goes on Google will stop listing new information for #3 and start putting the info into #4?

Currently #4 listed very little info and many things say "Processing data, please check again in a day or so". I am just wondering how this will work int he next month and year. If #4 will be the only thing that matters or if I will have to get info from the others.

ETA; FWIW, I did submit an updated sitemap with the https added for each page.
 
Joined
Jul 18, 2012
Messages
461
I would also create 301 redirects for EACH page and post on your site. I know you have the general redirect going but for SEO purposes it's best to 301 redirect every page and post on the site so that all the http: pages redirect to their respective https: pages.


Travis
 

Wirenut

Member
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Oct 26, 2019
Messages
50
@Travis Van Slooten the rewrite .htaccess code above does that automatically.

That's what the $1 part of this line does:

RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://mysite.com/$1 [L,R=301]
The article says that Google says to use "301 redirects on a per-URL basis". That $1 part does exactly that? And I don't even have to pay the dollar for it??? :ROFLMAO:
 

djbaxter

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To summarize the information in the link from @Tony Wang above:

What do I do now? You can now communicate to Google your preferred domain through good site architecture. Google said you can use these four methods or read this help document to help Google determine your canonical domain.

(1) Use rel=”canonical” link tag on HTML pages
(2) Use rel=”canonical” HTTP header
(3) Use a sitemap
(4) Use 301 redirects for retired URLs
 

Wirenut

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Oct 26, 2019
Messages
50
Thank you for the added information gentlemen. So my understanding of this is that I am in compliance because I have all of my site's URLs listed in the sitemap with both https and www. And also because I have the redirect that I posted above which will send people/Google from http to https and www.

There is no rel=”canonical” on my site, I am not sure how to do that with my CMS, or if it's necessary because I am doing the above?
 

djbaxter

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I don't think it's necessary. I read that as you can use 1 or more of the four methods listed, not that you need to use all four.

However, if you are using WordPress there is an easy way to add rel-canonical tags: just add the free Insert Headers and Footers plugin from WPBeginner and add the line in the Headers section (Dashboard >> Settings >> Insert Headers and Footers).

 
Joined
Jul 18, 2012
Messages
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@Travis Van Slooten the rewrite .htaccess code above does that automatically.

That's what the $1 part of this line does:

RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://mysite.com/$1 [L,R=301]
You learn something new everyday! I never actually do this stuff myself as my developer takes care of it but I'm going to ask him if he uses this code or if he does it url by url. If it does it the latter way I'm going to suggest he use the simple code here:)

Thanks,

Travis
 

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