A Secure Website is The Best Way to Protect Your Brand
Did you know? 67% of the consumers are directly influenced by what they find online about a brand!
Having a strong online presence is the key to developing a successful brand. We live in a time when the cyberspace is the leading platform upon which all the brands grow and thrive.
97% of the adults look up to the internet as a reliable source of information! This reflects how the Internet is rapidly becoming the primary lifeline that connects a business with its customers. It is no wonder that a brand’s online presence greatly influences how the world looks at a brand.
Pay Attention to Online Branding
A brand can leave a strong impression through either a well-built website or highly engaging social media accounts. The site is the digital face of the brand and the primary source of connection for engaging with online customers. It provides the first impression of the brand in the cyberspace, which makes it a crucial tool for building a strong customer base. Protecting the website will help protect the brand.
A simple lapse in online security can affect your brand in many ways. Even a simple glitch that compromises the website’s security can put off a customer and tarnish the brands’ reputation; this could quickly snowball into a more prominent issue that causes sales to drop on a massive scale.
Did you Know? Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, went down for 40 minutes and lost a whopping $4.8 million in sales!
With cybercrime on the rise, it becomes prudent to take robust measure to ensure the security of a brand’s online presence. Hackers today don’t discriminate between big or small businesses. The small to medium enterprises are as much vulnerable as the more prominent brands. This is because the small businesses usually have relaxed safety measures for their website. This makes them easy prey for cybercriminals. Hackers use small websites to store files. They could be targeting the site to execute a political agenda or to bring your site down so that your rival site steps up in search engine ranking. Whatever the case, once a brand’s online reputation is compromised it becomes harder to win it back.
How Website Security Threats Can Ruin Your Brand:
Security breaches are usually born out of a lenient approach to a site’s security. Compromising the integrity of the website can affect a brand’s overall reputation. Here are a couple of ways in which some of the most common security threats can hurt the brand’s online presence.
Google Blacklisting Prevents Visitors
Blacklisting is a process where a search engine removes a site from their index. Search engines like google aim to protect their visitors from a hacked website. Google Blacklisting is done to protect the user from getting hacked from whatever security threat that might have invaded the website in question. Sites are usually blacklisted when a search engine like Google finds that a site has been hacked. A hacked site could be showing inappropriate ads, or diverting your traffic to the different site, among other things. Most of the time, the website owner is not even aware of the fact that the site is under attack.
Did you Know? When blacklisted, a site can lose nearly 95% of its organic traffic which can have a drastic effect on its sales and revenue.
Web Hosts May Suspend the Site
The web hosts usually suspend or blocks a site when the site is hacked or compromised. Shared web hosts tend to host multiple sites on the same server. When one site is hacked, it endangers other websites on the same server. Suspending the affected site is the quickest way to ensure that whatever malicious component that infected the hacked site is kept at bay.
Did you Know? When web hosts suspend a website, visitors are left with the white screen of death.
Slow Website Causes Loss of Visitors
This is a commonly known issue that can turn away customers from even the most well-reputed brand sites. A slow website can be a result of a hack. Big or small, hackers tend to use a site for various reasons. They can be using your server resources to send out spam emails, attack or promote other sites or even use your disk space to store their files.
You might not even know that the site has been slowed down while customers on the other end lose patience and return in smaller numbers every time. This, in turn, affects the sites Google ranking.
Did you Know? Research suggests that nearly 50 % of the users do not go past the first page. In such a competitive environment staying on top of the search list directly relates to the number of potential customers you get. This puts the importance of web site speed in perspective
Hacks Tarnish Brand Image
A hacked site projects a vulnerable image of the brand to its customers. Hackers usually leech off a site’s resources to serve their purposes. A big attack such as a Pharma hack is made by pharmaceutical companies to advertise their products and make them appear higher up in the Google search results than they usually would. Another notorious type of hack popular these days is the cryptocurrency hack where miners take control of a site and use it to mine cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Etherium. Cryptocurrency mining usually takes up a lot of energy and resources which can again slow down the website.
Did you Know? A pharma hack can drastically bring down the reliability of your site in the customer’s eyes.
How to Protect Your Brand’s Online Presence:
Taking measures to prevent a security breach and protecting an already secure website is far more efficient than finding ways to fix the problem after the damage is done.
There are some ways in which your brand can avoid becoming victim to a cyber-attack.
Utilize Protection Services
With the number of hacking attacks increasing exponentially, it is necessary to have reliable security measures to protect your WordPress website.
There are a lot of useful website security plugins that can adequately protect your website like MalCare, Wordfence and Sucuri. Check website for malware using any of these security solutions.. They prevent malicious login attempts and restrict other hacking attempts from gaining control of your site. These plugins also flush out any malware that might have been installed on WordPress and quickly remove the malicious scripts. These security solutions regularly update their services to detect the latest malware being used on the web. Most of these plugins are free, safe and highly reliable. They are an easy way for the users to ensure the security of their site quickly.
Switch from HTTP to HTTPS
Google’s emphasis on security and privacy has considerably increased in recent times. Securing your WordPress admin is generally a good practice. Switching from HTTP to HTTPS has become a top priority since chrome started marking sites that do not use HTTPS as insecure. HTTPS is aimed at improving the integrity of data transfer and privacy.
Become Aware of Good Security Practises
It is imperative to actively learn good security practices to be better prepared for cyber-attacks. With a continuous evolution of threats, being aware of security practices is the best way to tackle the ever-changing landscape of online security. Protection of data, especially user data is compulsory to increase liability.
Data breaches instantly affect a brands reputation by losing their customers trust. Ensuring safe handling of user data is particularly important for the e-commerce industry which heavily relies on brand-consumer relationship. Transparency in how a business handles a customer’s data shows how valuable the customer is to the company. This, in turn, reflects positively when it comes to brand loyalty. Customers are more likely to return to a business with which they feel safe and secure.
Facebook was recently accused of informally harvesting information from over 50 million of their profiles to sell it to a political consulting firm. The Facebook data breach scandal and the following #deletefacebook movement is a strong example of how data handling has grown to be a much more important topic in recent times.
Did you Know? Following this controversy, Facebook’s stock prices dropped rapidly leading to a $43 billion loss in market capitalisation.
This shows how important it is to take steps towards managing user data properly.
A secure website is the first step in building a brand with a strong online presence. Making a mark in the digital space is a crucial step in connecting with your target audience. Website security is a great way to make sure that the reputation of the brand is well intact. Ignoring safety measures might open your site to a lot of potential threats and create unnecessary hiccups to your brand’s growth in the future.