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Three Reasons (with case studies) Why You Should Get an EV SSL Certificate

Tuesday, March 31st, 2020

Do you run an online store and want to improve conversion rates? Are you a financial institution looking to boost customers’ trust? Do you want the best SSL security for your organization? All business owners, regardless of their niche aim to gain an advantage over the competition, and more often than not, the smallest details make the biggest difference.

It’s the responsibility of each website to secure visitors’ sensitive data. With SSL certificates all but mandatory now, chances are you’ve already encrypted your website. but have you ever considered an Extended Validation SSL certificate for your online business?

EV SSL certs are the strongest indicator of a genuine website. The EV SSL features your company’s official name in the certificate’s info so that visitors know instantly they’re on the right site.

If you’ve done your research before securing your site, you already know the pros and cons of EV certificates. The only disadvantage is expensive pricing, however, there are plenty of so-called experts deeming EV certificates redundant. They argue that since encryption strength is identical across all certificates, EV SSL is just a way for CAs to make more profits.

It’s true. Most websites don’t need extended validation, but e-stores, financial institutions, enterprises, and even smaller companies may benefit greatly from an EV SSL cert. And they don’t even have to spend exorbitant money on it. Those thousand- dollars certificates you see from the likes of DigiCert are for select banks and corporations. Plenty of affordable EV options exist for even the tightest budgets.

In this article, we’ll provide concrete evidence with case studies why EV SSL certs are a smart addition to your business. Check the 3 reasons why your business may benefit from an EV certificate.

Highest level of customer trust and confidence in your brand

With so much information available about SSL certificates and web security, the average user today is better equipped to recognize dubious websites. Customers are very picky when their sensitive data is at stake, and only share it with authentic sites, companies capable of protecting it from criminals. Since EV SSL certificate is one of the most powerful indicators of trust, businesses have been successfully using it for over a decade.

Scuba.com, the world’s largest online retailer of scuba and other underwater equipment, started as a retail store in 1990. It began selling its first products online in 1996. Back then, even SSL certificates were relatively new, but the owners were very conscious of customers’ privacy and sensitive data.

They chose Thawte to encrypt personal information, and never looked back since. When EV SSL certificates came to life in  2007, Scuba.com installed one and saw massive growth in online sales, with 95% of its products now sold online.

Melinda Hendon, CEO of Scuba.com has only good words to say about Thawte:

“We’ve been with Thawte for almost 15 years, and each time I consider renewing I think to myself, ‘easy deployment, high-level support, lower cost solution, a company that’s been good to the Web,’ and all of those things add up to Thawte. It’s just a no brainer.”

Impeccable protection against phishing attacks and other threats

Phishing is one of the oldest scams on the internet. A typical phishing attack tricks users to submit login credentials and credit card numbers on pages that look almost identical to those of real websites. It’s a huge problem, especially with the emergence of free SSL certificates.

By requiring stringent validation guidelines, EV SSL prevents the issuing of a certificate to a cyber-criminal in the name of the tricking target. The EV indicator is an easy and instant way to spot an authentic website from a fake one.

A research form Georgia Tech’s Cyber Forensics Innovation (CyFI)Lab on the topic of Extended Validation certificates and online criminal actors concluded that EV SSL certs are 99.99% likely to be unassociated with bad cyber-criminals. And that’s from a whopping sample of 2.6 million domain names going back to 2010.

The study focused on domains associated with underground market place and forums, bad actor backlinks and malware, and discovered on three domains with an EV certificate involved in underground marketplaces and forums, and seven cyber-actors associated with them.

Here’s what the research team had to say:

“…the probability that an EV SSL certificate is associated with bad domains is less than 0.00013 or less than 0.013 %. Which means that EV SSL certificates are highly unlikely to be linked to domains that are associated with underground forums and marketplaces or malware/cybercrime activities.”

The paper summary section concluded:

EV certificates are highly indicative of legitimate domains registered by legitimate business. Therefore, users benefit by noticing and using the browser security indicators as a guide to trust domains with EV SSL certificates.”

As you can see, EV certificates are almost untouchable when it comes to cyber-attacks and shady dealings.

Better conversion rates

When the web is riddled with constant cyber-threats and scams, gaining users’ confidence in your services is a long-term strategy. But when you’ve already reached a steady growth through building trust and authority, increasing sales further may without significant investment seem challenging. Here’s where Extended Validation certificates come into play. Besides providing bulletproof encryption and authenticity, they can also boost conversion rates. 

According to a study commissioned by Thawte, a leading Certificate Authority, websites that adopted EV SSL saw conversion rate increases ranging from 16.9% to 30% depending on the website and industry.

Fitness Footwear, the largest independent footwear retailer in the UK, for example, registered a shopping cart abandonment drop by 13.3% and conversions increased by 16.9% percent after implementing an EV SSL certificate.

Why your business should get an EV SSL Certificate – Conclusion

Extended Validation certificates will always divide opinions. Many will question their efficiency, especially in the wake of Chrome’s and Firefox’s latest decision to remove the green address bar. And, while on these browsers you now have to inspect the certificate to see the official company name, other browsers are still displaying the usual green bar.

Regardless of this controversial decision, the EV SSL certificate continues to provide the highest level of customer trust, and prevent ongoing phishing attacks. all while remaining the best indicator of an authentic business operating in good faith.