There are two possible ways to ensure that you encrypt connections from clients to the SQL Server. The first option is to setup IPsec either manually on both clients and server or by using a IPSec policy or you can setup SSL encryption. The simplest way to do so is to use the self signed certificates from the server but as those are exchanged during the connection handshake their security is limited so it's recommended to use certificates from a trusted root.
You can create a test certificate with MAKECERT.exe by following TheSQLDude instructions and copy the self created root certificate to all the clients.
So to set up SSL encryption over the wire in SQL Server you either need a certificate signed by a trusted provider, which means that your SQL Server needs to have a valid FQDN as no certificate providers create certificates for invalid Fully-Qualified Domain Names (eg .local). Or you can also install your own trusted PKI infrastructure for instance Active Directory Certificate Services (ADCS).
This is needed as all the clients need to trust the root certificate that signs the certificate you install on the SQL Server.
When creating a certificate for SQL server the certificate needs to be created with certain extended properties most importantly it needs to be setup as Server Authentication (126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.1) which means you might need to create a template in ADCS or you can create the certificate CSR using certreq
For this you need to create an csr.inf file
Signature = "$Windows NT$"
Subject = "CN = SERVER.DOMAIN.TLD"
FriendlyName = SERVER.DOMAIN.TLD
MachineKeySet = true
;SignatureAlgorithm = SHA256
KeyLength = 4096
KeySpec = 1
KeyUsage = 0xA0
MachineKeySet = True
Exportable = TRUE
Hashalgorithm = sha512
ValidityPeriod = Years
ValidityPeriodUnits = 10
You can then create a CSR to send to a CA
certreq.exe -new csr.inf keycertrequest.csr
or get a certificate from ADCS by in an elelvated command prompt
Certreq -new -f cer.inf Certificate.cer
And then you can export that certificate from your personal store and import that to the store for the SQL Server account.
When you have a certificate installed you can enable encryption in the SQL Server Configuration manager.
It's recommended to only use TLS 1.2 but then you need make sure you have updated the SQL Server native client and your SQL Server to the latest update. This is all well explained by SentryOne and in the release announcement