Are you planning to move your WordPress blog from HTTP to HTTPS? You need an SSL certificate. Now it is necessary for every WordPress blogger to secure their blogs by using SSL encryption. Learn how to activate free Cloudflare SSL for your website in this article.
For adding an SSL certificate to WordPress blogs, Cloudflare offers free and flexible SSL certificates for small websites. It is effortless to implement. It helps you to encrypt your blog’s transmitted data.
This encryption helps you protect your blog from getting hacked by an external host or network.
Today I am sharing this tutorial on how to add the SSL certificate to a WordPress blog by using the Cloudflare Flexible SSL certificate.
What is HTTPS?
HTTP means HyperText Transfer Protocol. The term “HTTPS” means “secured HTTP.” It provides a safe browsing feature to your blog and for your website visitors.
The HTTPS websites use SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificates. If the certificate doesn’t match your blog, the visitor’s browser will tell them they are not browsing in a secure way.
Updated modern browsers also warn about old HTTP connections.
Google considering using HTTPS as a ranking factor. So moving from HTTP to HTTPS is very important.
It increases your search engine ranking and organic traffic by implementing the HTTPS connection.
What is SSL CERTIFICATE?
Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is a standard security technology for creating an encrypted link between a server and a client, which is usually a website server and a browser, or a mail server and a mail client (like Outlook).
SSL makes it safe to send sensitive information like credit card numbers, social security numbers, and login information.
Usually, data sent between browsers and web servers is in plain text, leaving you vulnerable to eavesdropping.
If an attacker is able to intercept all data being transmitted between a browser and a web server, they can see and use that information.
More specifically, SSL is a security protocol.
Protocols describe how algorithms should be used. In this case, the SSL protocol decides how to encrypt both the connection and the data that is being sent.
How to add an SSL certificate to the WordPress Blog?
Cloudflare is providing a free SSL feature. By using this let us start the SSL integration process.
- Create a Cloudflare account
- Integrate Cloudflare CDN with your Blog
- How to enable Free Cloudflare SSL
- Blog settings after SSL activation
Now I am ready to explain this process in Four steps.
1. Create a Cloudflare account
First, register your details in the Cloudflare account to create a new account. After activating your new account, follow the steps given in my previous article. The link is provided below. Click the image and go for the SIgnup button then enter the email and password for the new signup.
2. Integrate Cloudflare CDN with your Blog
After login into the Cloudflare account, a box will prompt, as Add Websites. Enter your blog URL without a “http://www”. Then click on Begin Scan
- After a few seconds of scanning, you just click on Continue Setup.
- Now it shows all the DNS Records of the domain. they will show all the records details. Do not make any changes here. You need to verify here.
- Scroll down and just click on the Continue button once again.
- On the screen, you will get the Cloudflare plan option as a Free Website, Pro Website, and Business website. Choose first plan Free website
- The final part of this step is, you need to update the name servers. Here you will get two different name servers with the name of Cloudflare. Copy those two name servers on the notepad.
- Replace original nameservers of your domain name with these Cloudflare NameServers.
How to Update Nameservers in Godaddy account?
To update Cloudflare nameservers in your domain registrant account (I took Godaddy as an example here), follow the below steps.
- Login to your domain name registrant account
- Click on Manage domains, you can find your all domains here. Click on your domain name on which you want to install an SSL CERTIFICATE and click on it.
- Then click on Manage DNS (or) DNS. You will find two Nameservers that are connected with hosting. Now click on the Change button and replace it with Cloudflare Nameservers.
- Check those nameservers carefully before clicking the SAVE option. After clicking on SAVE. Cloudflare will take some time to make the changes in the nameservers. That’s it
- Now go to Cloudflare account then click on Continue (or) Recheck
- The Cloudflare account will show you a Success message
3. Set up and Activate Free Cloudflare SSL Certificate
After Cloudflare Nameservers verification, you need to activate Free Cloudflare Flexible SSL. To do this follow steps.
- Click on Crypto option, choose SSL > Flexible (From the drop-down menu).
- Cloudflare takes a few minutes to activate an SSL certificate
- Once it activated it will turn the Green color circle with “Active Certificate”.
4. Blog settings after SSL activation
After SSL certification, you need to install two plugins on the WordPress blog. To install the plugin, If you are now sure how to install a plugin in WordPress, follow the steps
Plugins to install and activate
- Plugin 1: Go to Plugins > Add new. Enter the plugin name Cloudflare Flexible SSL Plugin, then click on the Install button and finally hit the Activate button. This plugin helps you to integrate the activated Cloudflare SSL certificate on your WordPress website.
- Plugin 2: After the above plugin activation, download this plugin WordPress HTTPS. (Note: This plugin is available free WordPress plugin directory, but it does not show in the Plugin search box. So better to download this plugin to your computer, then follow the steps).
- Go to Plugin > Add New
- Click on Upload Plugin, then click on the Upload button and point the plugin location finally hit the Install button.
Setup WordPress HTTPS settings
After activating the second plugin, you need to do one set on the plugin settings page.
- From the WordPress dashboard, click HTTPS from the left side column.
- There are plenty of options on the right side.
- Click YES on Proxy section
- Finally, click on Save Changes.
Create Page Rule in CloudFlare
To apply the HTTPS certificate to all your blog pages. This is an essential step. First, you need to create and add Page Rules in Cloudflare. By doing this action, your WordPress blog is fully activated with HTTPS. Follow the steps carefully.
- Go to Cloudflare account and click on Page Rules
- Then click on “Create Page Rule”
- Now add your site URL in the given field between the asterisks (Shown in the below image) and choose Always Use HTTPS from the settings pop-up box.
- Finally, click on Save and Deploy.
Final Change in WordPress Site Address Settings
This is the last step to complete this method.
- Click on Settings > General from WordPress Dashboard.
- Change the site address from HTTP:// to HTTPS://
- Then click on Save changes.
After a few seconds, re-login your blog. Now your site is ready and enjoys HTTPS. This change is secure and makes it secure for your readers. If your blog is not loading in HTTPS state, clear cookies from your browser, and Clear Browsing History. then open your blog.
SSL certificate enability and HTTPS migration are some of the essential ranking factors in the Google search engine. So, Try to move your blog to the next step by using the above steps.
Simply, Free Cloudflare Flexible SSL is the most excellent choice for small business owners and for personal bloggers.
Once again thanks to the Cloudflare team to make my blog secure with your Flexible SSL setup. Everyone likes to see a green Padlock on the URL
Follow the above step to make your site secure. If you are facing any problems, do not forget to use the below comment section. Just drop your quarry in the comment section or use my Contact US page.
I hope this guide on “How to activate Free Cloudflare SSL to WordPress websites?” is useful for you to move your blog to the next ranking level.
Share this article with your friends on social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Google plus. Wish you all the best.
Special Note for you
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They are providing excellent online support to resolve your technical issues from your blog and server-side within minutes. If you are using any one of these hosting accounts, you are very comfortable with your blog from all technical issues.
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Awesome tutorial. I’m just wondering what the benefit is of the second plugin. Can you just install the first plugin and skip the second one? Basically, what’s the importance of the second plugin, page rule, and changing the address in your WordPress settings?