SSL, short for Secure Socket Layer is a digital certificate issued to confirm the authenticity and encryption of the traffic to a website. Any website you see with a green icon on the address bar with the prefix https:// uses a certificate. Using a certificate for your website has become more important than ever.
SSL traffic is encrypted. That means that any communication between a user’s computer and the server hosting the website is encrypted. Unencrypted traffic can be intercepted by what is known as a man-in-the-middle attack. Any sensitive information can then be recorded by a malicious third party. This is why any ecommerce site, or site that deals with credit cards will always be protected by SSL.
With the recent rise of hacking and the NSA revelations by Snowden, we now know that unless encrypted, anything we say or do on the web can be tracked and recorded. The most basic way then to protect the users of your website is to get SSL. This is true even for non ecommerce sites.
Such is the importance of SSL now that Google uses it as a signal to improve search engine rankings. Now any site that uses SSL will have a search engine ranking advantage over non secure sites. This is true for all sites, not just ecommerce sites. Protect the privacy and security of your users and get an SSL certificate.