How to Activate Free SSL Certificate on BlueHost Hosting?

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After installing a WordPress blog, you need to install a free SSL certificate on your Bluehost hosting. Generally, the SSL certificate automatically assign and install on new and existing domain names. However, some customers may need to install it manually.

If you have also tried to install SSL certificate and your bluehost free ssl not working, you can follow this guide to resolve this issue.

Note: Before enabling free SSL certificate on BlueHost, make sure that you disable Whois privacy protection. In some cases, BlueHost validate your identity and use your email id to send validation information.

If your Whois privacy is enabled, BlueHost will not be able to send validation emails. Once you enable the SSL certificate, you can re-enable Whois privacy protection of BlueHost.

How to Use Free SSL Certificate on BlueHost?

Here’s a three step process to install and activate free SSL certificate on BlueHost hosting.

How to Enable Free SSL Certificate on BlueHost?

  • Login to your BlueHost control panel.
  • Click the My Sites then select the domain on which you want to enable SSL certificate.
  • Click on Manage Site.

Select BlueHost Domain Name

  • Go to Security Tab & toggle the Free SSL certificate to ON.

Free SSL Certificate on Bluehost

Now BlueHost will attempt to install and activate the free SSL certificate for your domain name. This could take up 10 to 20 mins. If it takes more than 30 mins, reload the page and toggle the Free SSL Certificate button to ON.

In some cases, you need to take action to complete the process. If this is the case, you will receive an email notification so don’t forget to keep checking your email during the process.

If your SSL installation is completed, you can check with online SSL checker tool like this to verify if your domain has an active SSL certificate or not.

Online SSL checker tool

Congratulations!!! your SSL certificate is successfully installed on BlueHost hosting.

Now the next step is to migrate http:// to https:// url.

Migrate Your Website from http:// to https://

After activating the SSL certificate, next step is to migrate your website to https:// successfully.

Note: SiteGround and A2Hosting users can also take the benefit of free SSL certificate. Just ask their customer support team to enable free SSL certificate on your blog.

Once it is done, you can follow below process to migrate your website from http:// to https://.

Install Really Simple SSL Plugin

After activating free SSL certificate on your BlueHost hosting, it automatically updates your website URL. Now your website will access on both http:// and https:// addresses.

Now install really simple SSl plugin to divert all your http:// traffic to https:// directly.

Really Simple WordPress Plugin

Once you have installed and activated the plugin, it will show you following message.

Ready to Migrate from HTTP to HTTPS

Click on Go ahead, activate SSL!

Edit .htaccess File & Add the code for HTTP to HTTPS rediection

After installing and activating really simple SSL plugin, you need to ad few lines of code in your website’s .htaccess file. You can either edit the file using Yoast SEO Plugin or by FTP.

You can add following lines either at the begging or end of .htaccess file.

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off
RewriteRule (.*) https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [R=301,L]

Once you have updated the .htaccess file, your work is almost finished.

If you have an existing website, you need to change all your http URLs to https in database. But if you have a new website, then your website is successfully migrated to https.

Update all HTTP URLs to HTTPS In Database

After installing and activating Really Simple SSL Plugin and updating .htaccess File for HTTP to HTTPS. There is no need to update all your HTTP links to HTTPS. It will automatically redirect all your HTTP links to HTTPS.

But I still recommend you to change all your existing HTTP links to HTTPS.

How you can do it?

To do this, first you need to install and activate Better Search Replace WordPress plugin.

Then go to Tools > click Search & Replace to start using this plugin.

Note: Take backup of your database before replacing the text.

Now replace http:// to https://.

After replacing all the http:// links, do not forget to install broken link checker WordPress Plugin. This is best plugin to keep our websites SEO intact.

I always use this plugin to check broken links on my website.

Change Cloudflare Settings [for Cloudflare user only]

If you are a Cloudflare user, you need to change following settings.

  • Login to your Cloudflare Dashboard.
  • Select your Domain and go to Crypto and change the settings to Full under SSL.

Cloudflare SSL Certificate Full

Scroll down and don’t forget to enable Automatic HTTPS Rewrites to ON.

Enable Cloudflare Automatic HTTPS rewrite

That’s it!

Now, your website is migrated from HTTP to HTTPS.

If your service provider do not offer free SSL certificate like GoDaddy, you can still get free SSL certificate with Cloudflare. You can see our step-by-step guide to setup free SSl certificate with Cloudflare.


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