WordPress Force HTTPS Without Plugin: The Ultimate Method

Hey there! Are you running a WordPress website on WP Engine and want to make it more secure? Worried about insecure content? Consider using a free SSL certificate or the Simple SSL plugin. Well, I’ve got some exciting news for you. Trust me, it’s easier than you might think!

Now, you might be wondering why it’s important to secure your website with HTTPS and obtain a free SSL certificate. It’s crucial because without HTTPS, your website may have insecure content and use an insecure protocol. To ensure the security of your website, consider using the Simple SSL plugin. Well, let me tell you – having that little green padlock in the address bar of your website url not only adds an extra layer of security with a secure https version but also builds trust with your visitors through a free ssl certificate. With cyber threats on the rise, safeguarding your WordPress site is crucial. One way to enhance security is by using a plugin like WP Engine. Another important step is to ensure that your site has a secure HTTPS version, which can be achieved by installing a free SSL certificate.

But here’s the best part: You don’t need to rely on plugins or spend a fortune on a WordPress theme or WordPress database with WP Engine hosting to achieve this. In this blog post, we’ll explore how to install an SSL certificate and force HTTPS on your WordPress site without using any plugins. We’ll also discuss the benefits of using Cloudflare and how to set up rules for a secure website. From understanding the concept of a wordpress theme to implementing it step by step using a plugin, we’ve got you covered with all the rules you need.

So, if you need to enhance your website’s security and gain the trust of your visitors, let’s jump right in! You’ll need to edit your website with a cloudflare plugin.

Benefits of Using HTTPS on a WordPress Site

Using HTTPS on your WordPress site with Cloudflare offers several significant benefits that can enhance the security, trustworthiness, and overall performance of your website. You may need to install a plugin and set up rules to ensure a seamless transition. Let’s explore these advantages in more detail:

Enhance the security and privacy of user data transmitted through your site

By implementing HTTPS, you create a secure connection between your website and its visitors. This is why you need to install a plugin that enables HTTPS on your website. This encryption plugin ensures that any data exchanged between the two parties remains confidential and protected from prying eyes. You need this plugin to ensure data security. Whether users need to submit personal information through contact forms or make online purchases, using a plugin like HTTPS safeguards their data from potential hackers or malicious actors.

  • Pros:
    • Encrypts sensitive user information
    • Prevents unauthorized access to data
    • Provides a secure browsing experience for visitors

Gain trust from visitors with the padlock symbol indicating a secure connection

When users visit your website, they need to see the padlock symbol in their browser’s address bar. This plugin instills confidence in them that they are interacting with a trustworthy and reliable site. This visual indicator signifies the need for users to ensure that their connection is encrypted and their data is safe from interception or tampering.

  • Pros:
    • Establishes credibility and professionalism
    • Encourages users to engage with your site
    • Reduces bounce rates as visitors feel more secure

Improve SEO rankings as Google favors sites with HTTPS over HTTP

In today’s digital landscape, websites need search engine optimization (SEO) to drive organic traffic. SEO plays a crucial role in meeting this need. Google has made it clear that websites need to prioritize HTTPS over HTTP for better rankings. By migrating to HTTPS, you can potentially boost your search engine rankings and increase visibility and organic traffic. This is something you need to consider for your website.

  • Pros:
    • Increasing the need to rank higher on search engine result pages (SERPs) increases the chances of ranking higher on search engine result pages (SERPs).
    • Improves organic traffic to your site
    • Signals trustworthiness to search engines

Protect against potential hacking attempts and data breaches

Running a WordPress site without HTTPS leaves you vulnerable to various security threats, including hacking attempts and data breaches. It is crucial to prioritize the need for HTTPS to protect your site and its data. Cybercriminals often target websites that lack encryption, as they need to exploit vulnerabilities in order to gain unauthorized access or steal sensitive information. By implementing HTTPS, you significantly reduce the risk of such attacks and protect your website and its users.

Step-by-Step Guide: Moving Your WordPress Site from HTTP to HTTPS

Understand necessary preparations before migrating to HTTPS

Before you embark on the journey of migrating your WordPress site from HTTP to HTTPS, it’s essential to understand the necessary preparations. Here are a few key points to keep in mind:

  1. Backup your website: Before making any changes, it’s crucial to create a backup of your entire website. This ensures that you have a restore point in case anything goes wrong during the migration process.
  2. Check theme and plugin compatibility: Some themes and plugins may not be fully compatible with HTTPS. It’s important to verify that all the themes and plugins you’re using are compatible with SSL certificates and make any necessary updates or replacements.
  3. Update internal links: If your website contains any internal links using HTTP, they will need to be updated manually after the migration. This includes updating links within posts, pages, menus, widgets, or any other content on your site.

Generate or purchase an SSL certificate for your domain

To enable HTTPS on your WordPress site, you’ll need an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate. There are two main options for obtaining an SSL certificate:

  1. Free SSL certificates: Many hosting providers offer free SSL certificates through services like Let’s Encrypt or cPanel AutoSSL. These certificates provide basic encryption for your website at no additional cost.
  2. Paid SSL certificates: If you require advanced features or additional security measures, you can choose to purchase an SSL certificate from a trusted certificate authority (CA). Paid certificates often come with extended validation (EV) options and higher warranty coverage.

Update WordPress settings and database URLs to use HTTPS

Once you have obtained an SSL certificate, it’s time to update your WordPress settings and database URLs. Follow these steps:

  1. Update Site Address (URL): In the WordPress dashboard, navigate to Settings > General. Update both the “WordPress Address (URL)” and “Site Address (URL)” fields to use HTTPS instead of HTTP.
  2. Update database URLs: Use a search and replace plugin, such as Better Search Replace or Velvet Blues Update URLs, to update all instances of your old HTTP URLs in the WordPress database to the new HTTPS URLs.
  3. Update hardcoded URLs: If you have any hardcoded HTTP links in your theme files or custom code snippets, make sure to update them manually to use HTTPS.

Test and verify that your site is fully functioning under the new protocol

After updating your settings and database URLs, it’s essential to thoroughly test your website to ensure everything is functioning correctly under the new HTTPS protocol. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Check for mixed content warnings: Mixed content occurs when some elements on a webpage are loaded over an insecure HTTP connection while others are loaded over HTTPS. Use browser developer tools or online tools like Why No Padlock? or SSL Check to identify any mixed content issues and fix them accordingly.
  2. Verify SSL certificate installation: Use online SSL checker tools like SSL Shopper or Qualys SSL Labs to verify that your SSL certificate is installed correctly and there are no errors or vulnerabilities present.
  3. Test website functionality: Browse through different pages of your website, submit forms, interact with plugins, and perform any other actions that users typically engage in on your site.

Ensuring a Secure Connection: Redirecting HTTP to HTTPS in WordPress

To ensure a secure connection on your WordPress site, it is crucial to redirect all HTTP URLs to their corresponding HTTPS versions. This not only helps protect sensitive information but also improves your website’s credibility and trustworthiness. Let’s explore some effective ways to accomplish this.

Set up automatic redirection from HTTP URLs to their corresponding HTTPS versions

One of the easiest methods to redirect HTTP to HTTPS in WordPress is by using server-side redirects or plugins like Really Simple SSL. With server-side redirects, you can add a few lines of code to your .htaccess file, instructing the server to automatically redirect visitors from the insecure HTTP version of your site to the secure HTTPS version.


  • Server-side redirects are efficient and do not require additional plugins.
  • They provide complete control over the redirection process.


  • Editing .htaccess files may be intimidating for beginners.
  • Any mistake in the code can cause errors on your website.

Ensure all internal links, media files, and resources are updated to use HTTPS URLs

When transitioning from HTTP to HTTPS, it is essential to update all internal links within your WordPress site. This includes links within posts, pages, menus, widgets, and custom elements. Make sure that all media files (such as images and videos) and external resources (such as scripts and stylesheets) are also referenced using secure HTTPS URLs.


  • Updating internal links ensures a seamless user experience without any broken or insecure connections.
  • It enhances the overall security of your website by eliminating mixed content issues.


  • Manually updating each link can be time-consuming for larger websites.
  • Overlooking certain links or resources could result in mixed content warnings.

Avoid mixed content issues by fixing any insecure elements on your site

Mixed content occurs when some elements on a webpage are served over an insecure HTTP connection while others are served over a secure HTTPS connection. This can lead to security warnings in browsers and undermine the trust of your visitors. To avoid mixed content issues, it is crucial to identify and fix any insecure elements on your site.


  • Resolving mixed content issues ensures a fully secure browsing experience for your visitors.
  • It helps maintain consistency and professionalism across your website.


  • Identifying and fixing all insecure elements can be challenging, especially on larger websites with numerous pages.
  • Third-party resources or plugins may introduce new insecure elements that require constant monitoring.

By following these steps, you can successfully redirect HTTP to HTTPS in WordPress, ensuring a secure connection for your users. Remember to regularly check for any mixed content warnings and promptly address them to maintain the integrity of your website’s security.

Methods for Forcing HTTPS Without a Plugin in WordPress

If you want to ensure a secure connection on your WordPress website by redirecting HTTP traffic to HTTPS, there are methods you can use without relying on a plugin. Let’s explore some of these methods and how they can be implemented.

Utilize .htaccess File Modifications

One way to force HTTPS without a plugin is by making modifications to the .htaccess file. This file is located in the root directory of your WordPress installation and can be accessed through an FTP client or cPanel’s File Manager. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Backup Your .htaccess File: Before making any changes, it’s important to create a backup of your .htaccess file. This ensures that you have a copy in case anything goes wrong during the modification process.
  2. Redirect HTTP Traffic to HTTPS: Open the .htaccess file and add the following lines of code at the beginning:
RewriteEngine On 
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off 
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]

These lines of code enable the Apache mod_rewrite module and check if HTTPS is off. If it is, all incoming traffic will be redirected to HTTPS.

  1. Save and Test: Save the changes made to the .htaccess file and test your website by accessing it using HTTP instead of HTTPS. You should be automatically redirected to the secure version.

Rewrite Rules Using Apache mod_rewrite Module

Another method involves utilizing rewrite rules with the Apache mod_rewrite module. This method allows you to specify custom rules for redirecting HTTP traffic to HTTPS based on specific conditions or URLs.

  1. Enable Rewrite Engine: Ensure that your server has mod_rewrite enabled by checking your server configuration files or consulting with your hosting provider.
  2. Add Rewrite Rules: Open your .htaccess file and add the following lines of code:
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]

These rules are similar to the ones mentioned earlier. They enable the rewrite engine, check if HTTPS is off, and redirect HTTP traffic to HTTPS.

  1. Save and Test: Save the changes made to the .htaccess file and test your website by accessing it using HTTP instead of HTTPS. The rewrite rules should redirect you to the secure version.

It’s important to note that when modifying files like .htaccess, any mistakes can lead to errors or even make your website inaccessible. Therefore, always create a backup before making any changes and proceed with caution.

By utilizing these methods, you can force HTTPS without relying on a plugin in WordPress. This ensures that your website visitors have a secure connection when browsing your site.

Remember, implementing SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) on your website not only enhances security but also boosts trust among users. So take the necessary steps to ensure a secure browsing experience for your visitors!

Troubleshooting Mixed Content Errors and Broken Padlock Warnings

To ensure your WordPress website is fully secure, it’s essential to address any mixed content errors or broken padlock warnings that may arise. These issues can occur when there are insecure elements, such as images, scripts, or iframes, not loaded via HTTPS. By taking the following steps, you can identify and fix these problems effectively.

Identify Mixed Content Issues Causing Warnings or Errors

When browsing a website with mixed content errors, you might notice warnings or errors in the address bar of your browser. To troubleshoot these issues:

  1. Use the browser developer tools’ console tab: Open your browser’s developer tools (usually accessible by right-clicking on a webpage) and navigate to the console tab. This will display any mixed content errors that need attention.
  2. Inspect insecure elements: Look for resources like images, scripts, or iframes that are being loaded through an insecure protocol (HTTP). These elements need to be updated to use HTTPS instead.
  3. Check for relative URLs: Sometimes, links within your website may be using relative URLs instead of absolute ones (starting with “http://” or “https://”). Ensure all internal links include the appropriate protocol to avoid mixed content warnings.

Fix Insecure Elements Not Loaded via HTTPS

Once you’ve identified the insecure elements causing mixed content errors, it’s time to fix them:

  1. Update media URLs: If you have images hosted on external servers without HTTPS support, consider downloading those images and uploading them to your own server so they can be served securely via HTTPS.
  2. Modify theme files: If your theme includes references to external resources using HTTP instead of HTTPS, make changes directly in the theme files to update these URLs accordingly.
  3. Replace hardcoded HTTP links: If you have hardcoded HTTP links within your content or custom code snippets, replace them with their corresponding HTTPS versions.

Ensure All Resources are Loaded Securely to Maintain the Padlock Symbol

To maintain the padlock symbol and provide a secure browsing experience for your users:

  1. Use HTTPS for all resources: Ensure that all resources, including images, scripts, stylesheets, and iframes, are loaded securely via HTTPS. This includes both internal and external resources.
  2. Consider using a content delivery network (CDN): If you’re utilizing a CDN to serve your website’s static content, make sure it supports HTTPS. Update your CDN configuration or switch to an HTTPS-compatible CDN if necessary.
  3. Check third-party integrations: If you have any third-party integrations on your website, such as social media widgets or embedded videos, verify that they’re also loading securely via HTTPS.

By following these troubleshooting steps and fixing any mixed content errors or broken padlock warnings promptly, you can ensure that your WordPress website remains fully secure and provides a seamless browsing experience for your visitors. Remember to regularly check for any new insecure elements that may arise due to updates or changes in your site’s content or plugins.

Submitting Your HTTPS Site to Google Search Console for Better SEO

To ensure that your website is fully optimized for search engines, it’s crucial to submit your HTTPS site to Google Search Console. This process allows you to monitor crawl errors and index status specific to the HTTPS version, as well as leverage additional features like sitemaps, URL inspection, and security issues reports.

Verify Ownership of Your Website in Google Search Console

Before you can proceed with submitting your HTTPS site, you need to verify ownership of your website in Google Search Console. This step confirms that you have the authority to make changes and receive important notifications about your site’s performance.

To verify ownership, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to your Google account and navigate to the Google Search Console.
  2. Click on “Add a Property” and enter the URL of your website (e.g., https://www.yourwebsite.com).
  3. Select a verification method from the options provided (such as HTML file upload or DNS record).
  4. Follow the instructions provided by Google for the chosen verification method.
  5. Once verified, you will have access to all the features and data within Google Search Console for your website.

Add and Submit the HTTPS Version of Your Site as a New Property

After verifying ownership of your website, it’s time to add and submit the HTTPS version of your site as a new property in Google Search Console. This ensures that search engines recognize and prioritize the secure version of your website when indexing its content.

Here are the steps:

  1. In Google Search Console, click on “Add a Property” again.
  2. Enter the URL of your HTTPS website (e.g., https://www.yourwebsite.com) this time.
  3. Follow any additional instructions provided by Google during this process.
  4. Once added successfully, you will see both versions (HTTP and HTTPS) listed separately within your account.

Monitor Crawl Errors and Index Status Specific to the HTTPS Version

With your HTTPS site added as a new property in Google Search Console, you can now monitor crawl errors and index status specific to the secure version of your website. This information is valuable for identifying any issues that may be affecting the indexing and visibility of your HTTPS pages.

Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Select the HTTPS version of your website from the properties listed in Google Search Console.
  2. Navigate to the “Coverage” section to view any crawl errors specific to the HTTPS pages.
  3. Check for any URLs that are marked as “Excluded” or have other issues, and take necessary actions to resolve them.
  4. Review the “Index Status” report to ensure that all your important HTTPS pages are being indexed properly.

Leverage Additional Features in Google Search Console

By submitting your HTTPS site to Google Search Console, you unlock access to additional features that can enhance your SEO efforts and overall website performance. These features include sitemaps, URL inspection, and security issues reports.

Here’s how you can leverage these features:

  • Sitemaps: Submitting a sitemap for your HTTPS site helps search engines discover and index all relevant pages efficiently.
  • URL Inspection: Use this feature to check how Google sees a specific URL on your HTTPS site, identify indexing issues, and request reindexing if needed.
  • Security Issues Reports

The Importance of WordPress Force HTTPS Without Plugin

In today’s digital landscape, ensuring the security of your website is paramount. That’s why it’s crucial to implement HTTPS on your WordPress site. We’ve covered the benefits of using HTTPS, provided a step-by-step guide for migrating from HTTP to HTTPS, and discussed methods for forcing HTTPS without a plugin in WordPress. But why is it so important to force HTTPS without relying on a plugin?

By taking control of the process and manually forcing HTTPS, you eliminate any potential vulnerabilities that may arise from relying on third-party plugins. You have full control over your website’s security, giving you peace of mind knowing that your visitors’ data is protected. Plus, by implementing this practice yourself, you gain a deeper understanding of how your website functions and can troubleshoot any issues more effectively.

Now that you have all the information you need to force HTTPS on your WordPress site without a plugin, it’s time to take action! Follow our step-by-step guide and ensure a secure connection for your visitors. Don’t let security be an afterthought – prioritize it and safeguard both your website and its users.


Can I use a plugin to force HTTPS on my WordPress site?

Yes, there are several plugins available that can help you force HTTPS on your WordPress site. However, as we mentioned earlier in this blog post, relying solely on plugins for security measures can introduce potential vulnerabilities. It is always recommended to manually implement the necessary changes instead.

Will forcing HTTPS affect my SEO rankings?

No, forcing HTTPS will not negatively impact your SEO rankings; in fact, it can improve them! Google has stated that websites with SSL certificates (HTTPS) receive a minor boost in search rankings compared to those without encryption.

What should I do if I encounter mixed content errors after implementing forced HTTPS?

If you encounter mixed content errors after implementing forced HTTPS on your WordPress site, don’t panic. This issue usually occurs when some elements on your website are still being loaded over HTTP instead of HTTPS. You can use a plugin like Really Simple SSL or manually update the URLs in your database to fix this problem.

Can I revert back to HTTP if needed?

While it is possible to revert back to HTTP, it is not advisable unless you have a specific reason for doing so. Switching back to HTTP after implementing HTTPS can lead to security risks and potentially harm your SEO rankings.

Do I need an SSL certificate for every subdomain?

Yes, each subdomain requires its own SSL certificate. If you have multiple subdomains, you will need separate certificates for each one. However, there are wildcard SSL certificates available that cover all subdomains under a single domain.

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