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Google: how to move from HTTP to HTTPS

In a post on Google+, Google’s John
Mueller explained the things that you should do if you are moving your
website from HTTP to HTTPS on the same hostname.

Google and HTTPS

Step 1: add the
HTTPS site to the search console

Add the HTTPS version of your site to Google’s
Search Console
. There’s nothing more you have to do in
Google’s Search Console. The ‘change of address’ setting does not
apply for HTTP HTTPS moves.

Step 2: test
HTTPS without indexing it

Use 302 redirects and the rel=canonical attribute
to HTTP if you want to test HTTPS without indexing it. The
rel=canonical attribute does not guarantee that the HTTP URL is
indexed. However, it is a strong signal for Google when picking the
indexed URL.

Google does not cache 302 redirects. Do not cloak
your website to Googlebot specifically. Further information about A/B
testing can be found here.

Step 3: after
the test, redirect your URLs to HTTPS

Use 301 redirects from HTTP to HTTPS and confirm
the new version by adding a rel=canonical attribute on the HTTPS page
(pointing to itself). Details can be found here.

4: check
the robots.txt file

The HTTPS site uses the HTTPS robots.txt file.
Check that it’s reachable or serves a 404 result code, and check that
your HTTP URLs aren’t blocked by the HTTP robots.txt file.

Frequently asked

Google rankings

Moving your website from HTTP to HTTPS is a good
idea if you want to
make your website more secure. The ranking bonus of HTTPS sites is
rather small at the moment.

Other factors have a much higher influence on the rankings of your
site. For example, the website audit
tool in SEOprofiler helps you to make sure that your web pages do not
contain critical errors. If you haven’t done it yet, try SEOprofiler

SEOprofiler now

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