Recently I migrated a website from http to https for the first time. What does that mean exactly? It means that I secured the website with an SSL certificate so that anyone that visits the website can safely purchase products online. That’s the simple explanation!
Securing a WordPress website was a daunting experience. I knew I needed to obtain an SSL certificate but that’s all I knew. So, what’s a girl to do? Well, this girl is resourceful! I asked for help and I did my research!
I found some great information during my research that explain http, https, and ssl certificates as well as what’s involved in moving your website to https. Here’s a list of useful posts:
- How To Add SSL and HTTPS In WordPress – WPBeginner
- Moving To HTTPS On WordPress – CSS-Tricks
- How to Setup WordPress SSL/HTTPS – 11 Important Things To Do – Dart Creations
They were all very good how to’s and very useful in thinking about everything that I needed in securing a WordPress website. Even though all of the posts were helpful I mainly used the Dart Creations list to get the job done.
Here are the steps I took in order to migrate the website to https:
- Purchased an SSL certificate from DigiCert
- My web hosting company installed the SSL certificate
- Updated the general settings for site and website url’s to https
- Updated the .htaccess file with the redirect code per WPBeginner post
- Tested the website and found that images did not display, the css was broken, and the twitter feed was no longer functional
- I reset everything back to http
I immediately started doing more research and that’s when I found the post from Dart Creations. In this post they talked about all the steps I had completed in my first attempt but they also talked about a plugin called Really Simple SSL. I researched the plugin and decided that it was worth trying out. It had great reviews and it seemed to do all the things I needed it to do.
Second & Final Attempt
- Installed the the Really Simple SSL plugin
- Reviewed the plugin and any set up that I needed to do
- Discovered the free version didn’t have everything I needed so I upgraded to the premium version
- Installed the premium plugin
- Updated the settings in the plugin
- Ran the scan the plugin had to check for possible issues
- Decided to pull the trigger and had Really Simple SSL activate the functions to migrate to https
- The dashboard logged out because during the process it was migrated as well
- Logged back in and everything looked good from the back end
- Tested the website in the browser and it WORKED! Everything was working just the way it had before the migration!
- Do your research
- Make sure you have a back up in place or can revert your changes if your site breaks
- Use Really Simple SSL plugin for migrating WordPress websites to https
If you have any thoughts or suggestions I would really like to hear them!