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How Do I Use My SSL Certificate?

Once the SSL you have purchased is installed, simply upload files and pages as you normally would. If your site (http://www.hostgator.com) were to use the SSL, you would add an "s" after the http. The link would now become https://www.hostgator.com and load securely.

But My Site Still Says http?

There are three main reasons why this might happen:

  • You entered the URL for your website and did not specify https.
  • You clicked a link that did not specify https.
  • Your site uses redirects and forces you to surf with http.

To force visitors to view your page with https, even if they do not specify it, you can create .htaccess rewrite rules to redirect to https. In this video, we'll walk you through how to make sure your SSL is installed correctly and then how to add the snippet below to force all of your traffic to use https.

The following example code will force visitors to view your site with https. Please make sure to replace example.com with your actual domain name.

# Always use https for secure connections
# Replace 'www.example.com' with your domain name
# (as it appears on your SSL certificate)
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{SERVER_PORT} 80
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://www.example.com/$1 [R=301,L]
  • If you are using WordPress or another CMS that already uses redirects, please skip to CMS Software Redirects.
  • If you do not know how to locate and/or edit your .htaccess file, instructions to do so may be found here.
  • Additional examples for other useful redirects and .htaccess tools may be found here.

CMS Software Redirects

Many website scripts, such as WordPress, already use methods to force your site to use a single specific base URL. Adding the code above may not work correctly or even prevent the website from loading entirely.

In this case, you may need to modify your site configuration files to force https. You will need to locate the setting commonly called a site URL, home URL, or base URL and edit this URL to include https. If you are unable to locate the correct setting, you may need to contact the CMS developer for instructions regarding how to force https.

This article will help you force https for WordPress: WordPress HTTPS (SSL) Plugin.

Here is another helpful article: Guide to Troubleshooting SSL.

Have further questions? Please reach out to HostGator Support via phone or Live Chat so we can assist you!