Switching from HTTP to HTTPS - checklist
Google told us a long time ago that you should start using HTTPS as it will become a significant ranking factor over time. Therefore, the transition from HTTP to HTTPS has been undertaken by many websites, not only for security reasons, but also to improve their ranking in search engine results. While Google has provided a list of what to do when migrating from HTTP to HTTPS, the reality is that in many cases some steps are not done correctly or are simply skipped.
Because of this, when the transition from HTTP to HTTPS is done incorrectly, the site may be dropped from the index altogether or simply start indexing from scratch, which also not profitable.
Therefore, we have prepared a three-part checklist with all (hopefully) tasks to be done before, during and after the transition from HTTP to HTTPS.
Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS - website preparation
|1||Setting up an SSL certificate :0.75pt solid #e9ecef;padding:5pt;vertical-align:top;">Purchase, configure and test a TLS certificate using SHA-2 for SSL.||On the server (you should ask your web host if they will do this for you)|
|2||Google Search Console Domain Registration||Register HTTP and HTTPS domains in Google Search Console, including versions with and without "www". If you have subdomains, duplicate them and set them to HTTPS version.||Google Search Console|
|3||Position control||Start tracking your site's search engine positions for both domain versions (HTTP and HTTPS).||Position Tracking Tool|
|4||Highest page ranks and profitable keywords||Identify your top subsites that rank highly and don't forget valuable keywords words. Focus on checking them and checking often.||Google Search Google Analytics|
|5||Check how many subpages of your site are indexed in search engines. Write down the current structure of your site.||Crawling tool like Screaming Frog|
|6||Install new HTTPS version, update internal links||Set a new version of the site to make changes, test and update sites. Remember that now every external and internal link must start with HTTPS. This applies to all images, scripts, CSS files, PDFs, etc.||Sitecode|
|7||HTTPS canonical URL||Update canonical addresses , including absolute URLs, using HTTPS in the site code.||Site Code|
|8||Checking for different address versions||Check that site redirects (www, without www, slash and without slash) are also reflected in the HTTPS version of the site, as they were in the old HTTP.||Site Code|
|9||Preparing redirects||Prepare all redirects and test 301 rules from HTTP address to HTTPS address.||Server|
|10||Generate new XML map||Generate a new XML sitemap with URLs containing HTTPS that you will submit to Google Search Console after your site has migrated.||Generator map XML|
|11||Prepare robots.txt<||Prepare a robots.txt file that will be loaded into the HTTPS version after the site goes live. Duplicate all directives, remembering to change to HTTPS if necessary.||robots.txt|
|12||Preparing changes to online campaigns||Change the URL in all active campaigns from HTTP to HTTPS.||Campaign Platforms|
|13||Disavow Configuration||Check it served whether you ever requests to disconnect. You must correct and resubmit them, taking into account the new HTTPS addresses in your Google Search Console profile.||Google Search Console|
|14||Geolocation Configuration||If you are migrating a gTLD that you are geolocating via Google Search Console (subdomains and subdirectories too), make sure you geolocate it to HTTPS again.||Google Search Console|
|15||URL Parameter Configuration<||If URL parameters are supported by Google Search Console, duplicate everything and reconfigure in the HTTPS version of the site profile.||Google Search Console|
Prepare your CDN configuration
|If you're using a CDN system, make sure your service provider can properly support HTTPS and your domain's SSL certificate version after you complete the transition from HTTP to HTTP.|
CDN Service Provider
|17||Updating social media and existing ads||Make sure all ad codes and sai The social media links you specify lead to the HTTPS version of the site.||Advertising and social media|
|18||Analysis Tools Configuration||Make sure the existing tool configuration The analysis will also monitor traffic from the new HTTPS address.||Site Analysis Platforms|
Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS - Implementation HTTPS
Here we will change the "when" table a bit. It is useful to write down the exact date for yourself, as this will help you find possible errors.
|1||Launching the HTTPS version of the website||Publish an approved HTTPS version of the page.||FTP or hosting tool||Data|
|2||Checking the structure of the new web HTTPS-based site||Make sure the URL structure of the new site matches the HTTP version.||Site code||Data|
|3||HTTPS internal links||Check all internal links on your site for invalid URLs (change all HTTP to HTTPS).||Site code||Data|
|4||HTTPS canonical URL||Make sure the canonical addresses point to the HTTPS version.||Site code||Data|
|5||HTTPS canonical URL||Enforce site redirects (www, no www, slash and no slash) in HTTPS- website version.||Site code||Data|
|6||301 HTTP to HTTPS redirect||Make all 301 redirects from each site address in the HTTP protocol version to HTTPS.||Site Code||Data|
|7||Delay HTTP to HTTPS transition date||Note in all tools that analyze your site the date you switched from HTTP to HTTPS. Again, make sure all tools have access to the new version of your site.||Analysis Tools||Data|
|8||SSL certificate verification||Check the SSL certificate configuration on your server. You can use the SSL Server tool Test.||Hosting and SSL testing tool||Data|
|9||Updating robots.txt||Update the old robots.txt file you prepared earlier with the corresponding changes for the HTTPS address.||robots.txt||Data|
Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS Post Implementation Checklist
|1||Checking HTTPS site indexing level||Use the "crawling" tool to check that all HTTPS addresses are available, properly bound, and that there are no errors anywhere, t .e. 404 errors, canonical errors, etc.||Tool for crawling, e.g. , Screaming Frog||Data|
|2||Validate new HTTPS redirects||Check all 301 redirect rules for HTTP to HTTPS, www to non-www and with and without a slash.The correct transition from HTTP to HTTPS largely depends on the correct 301 redirect.|
|3||XML sitemap||Check the XML again sitemap (in terms of URLs) and submit it for indexing in Google Search Console.||Google Search Console||Data|
|4||External Links Officially Confirmed||Check all your external links and make sure they contain the new HTTPS address.||Social networks, affiliate sites, advertising||Data|
|5||HTTPS page positions and traffic generated from them||Monitor the HTTP and HTTPS versions of the site, check for traffic drops, as this may be caused by a failed transition from HTTP to HTTPS.||Position monitoring and analysis tools||Data|
|6||Index monitoring||Visit Google Search Console daily and look for errors in all versions of your HTTP site, HTTPS www, no www, etc.||Google Search Console||Data|
|7||Robots.txt file validation||Recheck that all robots.txt directives in the HTTPS version of the domain are correct.||robots.txt||Data|
Migrating from HTTP to HTTPS - Summary
With the help of our checklist, I hope your transition from HTTP to HTTPS goes smoothly without any issues or drop in search engine rankings.
If an important sub-item is missing, feel free to comment accordingly.
Wishing you a successful transition from HTTP to HTTPS!