Since Google announced that they consider non-HTTPS sites as “non-secure”, a question has been raised: “does HTTPS affect ad performance?”

It is clear for everyone that HTTPS affects SEO score, but I have seen there is a confusion in the SEM part of things. Does it affect the ad performance, whether my website is HTTP or HTTPS?


So, the question is:

“if my site is still HTTP, will I have to spend more to show my ads?”

The answer is YES. And let’s see why.

Best way to judge on this thing is to have a look at the main document that explains what the Ad Rank is. Google says that your ad rank quality is based on:

  • Your Bid Amount
  • Auction time Ad Quality (expected CTR, Ad relevance, Landing Page Experience)
  • Ad Rank Thresholds (the factors Google is looking for, to show the ads)
  • The context of a person’s search (location, device, time of the search, earlier searches etc)
  • Expected impact of extensions and other ad formats

Among these, HTTPS or security is not mentioned. However, one thing is mentioned there: ”Landing Page Experience”.

Starting from October 2018, Non-HTTPS pages started to look like this:

How does such a website address make you feel? Would you still go into such a page? A little insecure, yes? Especially if the site is a transactional one, like an e-commerce site or a restaurant to order food. So, a possible reaction of the user would be to leave the website, while there are many secure ways.

As a result, Google will find out that people that are going to this landing page bounce immediately. So, it can’t be a good page to send the customers in, right? It will harm the quality, and you will need to bid more to compete for the search term, WHICH MEANS PAYING MORE FOR THE ADS.

The GOOD NEWS… It’s Easy to Correct!

No need to worry! Because changing your website to HTTPS protocol is way too easy. Some hosting sites are now offering to turn your website to HTTPS for free. Also, some host sites are requesting for SSL certification. (Probably in the ballpark of $100/year). Check your hosting company and they will tell you how.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Quite probably, although you changed to HTTPs protocol, you will not see that you have become a secure site. It is quite likely that some MIXED CONTENT issues will come up, which is another easy to solve, but a significant problem. (Here is an article regarding solving the Mixed Content problem)

Feel free to contact us if you have similar problems and you need professional advice.

Since this is a hot topic, the rules and the quotes keep changing quickly.
So follow us to keep yourself informed on this and similar issues.


**This article is a property of Smartup Marketing and will need to be referenced when some parts are used.