How to Install an SSL Certificate in Godaddy (WordPress) Hosting
You may be wondering why would you need an SSL certificate to begin with, what is an SSL certificate, and how does it work. SSL, which stands for Secure Sockets Layer, is a security protocol which allows for data encryption between a web server and a web browser. Without getting too technical, when a user connects to your website via a secure connection (HTTPS) the data is encrypted, preventing anyone (including your ISP) from eavesdropping on the transaction. Let’s get into the nitty-gritty of how to install SSL in WordPress hosting so you can feel more secure whenever you log in to your account.
STEP 1: Choose a Perfect Domain Name
Ideally you would want to pick a.com,.net, or.org domain because these are the top three levels in the DNS, or Domain Name System. The reason being is that a lot of websites are hosted on these domains and they are very generic and easy to remember. For example, if you had a website called “Homesickness”, you could choose homesickness.com, homesicknessnet.com, or homesicknessorg.com.
You also need to make sure that the name you choose for your website is not already registered by someone else. If it is, you will need to choose a different domain name. You can check to see if the name you have chosen is available by visiting GoDaddy Help and navigating to the Domain Names section. There, you can enter your domain name and click on the Check Availability button.
STEP 2: Create a Backup of Your WordPress Files
It’s always advisable to make regular backups of your WordPress files in case something happens to them. This is to ensure that you can always return your website to how it was when it was first launched. You can use a service like BackupBuddy to automatically make backups of your WordPress site. You should also consider using a cloud-based backup like Dropbox so if your device is stolen or damaged, you can still access your files. For the time being, let’s say that you have chosen the domain homesickness.com and you want to make sure that everything is backed up correctly, you can follow these steps:
STEP 2A: Download & Install WordPress To Your Computer
First of all, you will need to download and install WordPress to your computer. You can do this by visiting the WordPress website and clicking on the Download WordPress button. As mentioned above, it is advisable to use a dedicated device to host your WordPress site. You can download the WordPress portable version and install it on a memory stick or a USB drive. This way, you can take the backup that you have made on your computer and restore the site just as it was before you broke down. (In case you want to do this, make sure that you do this on a separate computer or device. Using the same device to perform both steps may result in data corruption.)
STEP 2B: Install WordPress To Your Dedicated Hosting Package
Now that you have WordPress installed on your computer, the next step is to install it to your dedicated hosting package. For the time being, let’s say that you are using Bluehost. To do this, you visit the WordPress website and click on the Sign Up button to get started. Once you are on the Sign Up page, click on the button that reads “I Have A Dedicated Hosting Plan” to continue.
If you already have a hosting account with Bluehost, you will land on the Dashboard page. If this is your first time using Bluehost, you will be taken to the Setup Wizard page where you can choose a domain name and enter your billing information. After you do this, you will be taken to the Dashboard page where you can see the progress of the WordPress installation. When the installation is complete, you will be brought back to the Overview page where you can click on the Finish button to continue to the dashboard.
STEP 3: Login To Your WordPress Admin Area
The last step in the process is to log in to your WordPress admin area. To do this, click on the My Sites button at the top of the WordPress dashboard. You will then be brought to the main Settings page where you can change many aspects of the appearance and functionality of your site. To continue, click on the Edit button next to the site that you want to change. This will open up the Settings page for that site where you can change various options.
Near the top of the Settings page, you will see the option to enable SSL. To enable it, just click on the Enable button. This will cause a blue bar to appear beneath the URL in your browser’s address bar. When the certificate is enabled, you can click on the Security tab to view information about the SSL certificate that was just installed by GoDaddy.
The best part about having SSL enabled is that when a user accesses your website via a secure connection (HTTPS) the data is encrypted, preventing anyone (including your ISP) from eavesdropping on the transaction. To learn more about SSL and how it works, please visit the following websites:
What Is An SSL Certificate?
An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that is issued by a trusted Certificate Authority (CA). The main purpose of an SSL certificate is to encrypt the data that is transmitted between a web server and a web browser (online shop, email, etc.). SSL certificates are used to verify the identity of a website by ensuring that the identity information (common name, organization, etc.) presented by a website when a user connects to it over a secure transport layer (e.g., HTTPS) is accurate. Without an SSL certificate, it is possible for a third party to impersonate your website and trick people into providing personal information.
How Do I Install An SSL Certificate?
Installing an SSL certificate is pretty straightforward – you will need to contact your domain name registrar (such as GoDaddy) to have them install the certificate on your behalf. To begin, visit the Certificates page of your domain name registrar and look for the option to generate a certificate for your domain name. Once you are on the Certificates page, you will see the option to generate a certificate in a few different ways. Choose the “Simple” option and click on the Continue button.
You will then be brought to a page where you can choose a domain name and select either a dedicated IP or a shared IP. If you have more than one website hosted on your account, you will need to install a separate certificate for each one. When you have selected a dedicated IP, you can click on the Continue button.
You will then be brought to a page where you can enter all the information about the certificate. The general information includes the domain name for which the certificate is intended, the email address associated with the domain, the type of certificate (e.g., domain validated), and whether or not you want the private key to be stored in a file on the server. Before you make any changes, you can click on the Preview button to verify the information.
When you are happy with the information, click on the Continue button. You will then be brought to a page where you can review the details of the certificate and then click on the Preview button to proceed.
You will then be brought back to the Certificate Details page where you can click on the Install button. This will initiate the process of having the certificate installed on your dedicated hosting package. Once the installation is complete, you will be brought back to the Review page where you can click on the Continue button to view the list of domains that are now using the SSL certificate that you installed.
STEP 4: Test Out Your New Site In Beta
Once you have installed the SSL certificate, the final step is to test out the site in beta. For this, you will need to visit the site you just created (homesickness.com) and click on the Log In button to log in to the site. You will then see the default WordPress login screen where you can enter your username and password to log in to your WordPress site.
If everything is working correctly, you should see the “Welcome, [your name]!” message in your browser’s address bar. If you are still unable to login, please contact your domain name registrar (such as GoDaddy) and ask them for help. Finally, if you are still unable to login, try clearing your browser’s cache and cookies.