3 things to consider when buying an SSL certificate

Choosing where to buy your SSL is almost as important as picking the right SSL to suit your site. Customer service is everything, especially when you’re buying something that can sometimes be a little technically tricky, like an SSL. Make sure you go for the right store to suit your needs by following these three tips.

1. Price

When it comes to SSL certificates, you really don’t need to spend an arm and a leg. Low-cost options like a Namecheap SSL certificate are just as good as the more expensive competitors. This is because you’re getting the same product no matter the price. No matter how expensive or cheap you go, your site will be getting an SSL with 256-bit encryption. Now, whether it actually secures your site to that level depends on your server settings and not the SSL itself, so that’s something you should check. But save your money where SSL is concerned.

2. Level of assistance

As we mentioned in the last point, SSL certificates can seem a bit complex, especially if you’ve never gotten one before. That’s why we recommend you don’t go for a store that simply sells you an SSL and leaves you to your own devices. A good SSL store should be willing to assist you on every level, such as with comprehensive guides to picking the right one, as well as clear how-to instructions on everything from activation to installation. If you get stuck, you want to know that there’s always someone around to help, so look into a store’s customer service and the level of assistance they offer. Reading third-party reviews is a great way to get a feel for this.

3. The issuing CA

An SSL certificate is only as effective as its issuing Certificate Authority (CA). Don’t buy an SSL until you know the issuing CA is trusted by major software and browsers. If you don’t and the CA is blacklisted, your SSL might not work. This is because trust is central to public key cryptography. If a CA has been caught involved in shady dealings, browsers may remove it from their trusted list, and will not load their “SSL-secured” sites via https. Instead, they’ll likely warn users that the site may not be secure, urging them not to enter. Having an untrustworthy SSL is basically like not having one at all.


Picking the right SSL is important, but so is choosing a good, reputable store. Before you buy, make sure you won’t spend more than you have to, that you’ll have plenty of help along the way, and that major web browsers trust the issuing CA.