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How to Change my WordPress Site to SSL (from http:// to https://)

Red Hippo now offers Free SSL on all ZA cPanel shared hosting accounts, so you can easily and affordably add SSL to your WordPress website.

If you have any of our ZA cPanel hosting accounts, SSL will already be automatically added for your hosting account, you don’t have to do anything to activate it. We’re offering free automatic Let’s Encrypt SSL for all ZA cPanel hosting accounts. Here’s how to get your WordPress site secured with SSL.

Change your WordPress site to SSL as Follows:

  1. Login to your WordPress Dashboard. (You can find your WordPress Dashboard by visiting http://yoursitename.com/wp-admin or http://yoursitename.com/wp-login.php)
  2. Go to Settings > General.
  3. Then change the following 2 x items in the boxes as follows:
    1. WordPress Address (URL) : change the address from http://yoursitename.com to https://yoursitename.com (so it’s simply a matter of adding an “s” at the end of the http).
    2. Site Address (URL): change the address from http://yoursitename.com to https://yoursitename.com (so it’s simply a matter of adding an “s” at the end of the http).
  4. You may then be automatically logged out of the WordPress dashboard and will need to login again after which you should be ready to go.
  5. You can then proceed to a 3rd party tool like Why No Packlock to check that your SSL for any errors and that’s it’s not breaking.

Important to Note:

If your web developer / designer built your website correctly, then everything should be find and your SSL will not be broken and you’re now sporting a shiny new green padlock and https://, congratulations. 🙂

Before proceeding with the steps above, we recommend you contact you web developer / designer and ask them if you activate SSL on your website as you don’t want it to break. They can advise you further.

If your SSL is Broken and Your Site is Giving Warnings:

If  after completing the steps above you visit your site and there are browser errors and warnings saying things like your site cannot be trusted or is insecure then there is more work to be done.

  1. We do recommend you repeat the steps above and in step 3 above, changing the https:// back to http://
  2. Contact your web developer / designer asking them to help and detailing that you want to activate SSL on your website.
  3. They should be able to assist you and find the cause or causes of your SSL breaking.

Why is my SSL Breaking my Site?

There are many reasons your SSL will break your website and give browser warnings, the most common causes are:

  1. Insecure calls to assets e.g. images and links. This sounds confusing but is simply a hard-coded internal URL (address) to an image or a link in a page or area on your website. For example, you may have uploaded a picture to the WordPress Media Library and then copied the link including the http://www.yoursitename.com/wp-content/uploads/…
  2. Insecure links to forms or other resources external to your website. This is a little more tricky but also easy to fix once you find it. You may be linking to a form on an outside website and the form address is http:// instead of https://. This can cause issues and break your SSL.

How to Fix Broken SSL on your Site

In the examples above we listed two causes of your SSL breaking on your website, to fix them proceed as follows:

  1. The example we used above was: http://www.yoursitename.com/wp-content/uploads/… So simply change the URL from http:// to https:// leaving everything else as is. We do however recommend using relative URLS (addresses) on your website for internal links. So the better practice and what we recommend would be to simply remove the http:// or https:// entirely and just include the relative portion of the address. In the example above, change http://www.yoursitename.com/wp-content/uploads/… to /wp-content/uploads/… (making sure to include the first /).
  2. In the second example above you can do the same thing to fix your broken SSL. Simply change the http:// to http:// leaving everything else the same. But keep in mind that the asset it’s linking to must also have SSL i.e. https:// for this to work. If not then this will not work. If the external asset does not have https:// we recommend contact the site owner and asking them to assist and how they recommend you proceed.

Did You Know:

  1. All Red Hippo ZA Hosting accounts come with FREE SSL, learn more here.
  2. Need help migrating your WordPress website to SSL, please contact us for a quote and we’ll be happy to help.

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