In this day and age, owning or managing a piece of web property comes with loads of responsibilities.
As well as making sure that the website is secure from threats, that updates are being addressed accordingly, and that the front end is displaying correctly, the webmaster also has to make sure that the site itself is being kept safe.
With this, backing up a website is one of the single most important aspects of being a web designer.
To cut straight to the chase…
In the following blog post, we:
- Explain why it is crucial to keep regular backups of your website as well as those that you manage, and
- Discuss some of our favorite backup tools.
Why You Should Backup Your WordPress Website
Backing up a website on a regular basis is of vital importance. Backups make sure that you’ll have a recent version of the website saved, close at hand, in the event that something goes wrong… and plenty can go wrong.
- Your website could get hacked and certain elements could be moved, removed or deleted,
- You could accidentally break your website by tinkering around with aspects of the live site, or
- A WordPress core, theme or plugin update could offset something and cause your website to break.
With a recent copy of your website’s components at hand, you could easily reinstate a previous version should a mishap occur.
An Overview of WordPress Backups
A WordPress website consists of:
- A database (found in the phpMyAdmin console of the server)
- The site files (found in the File Manager of the server)
When backing up a site, both of these components (the site files and the database) must be tended to.
As explained later in this post, there are a number of tools that’ll help you backup these two components really easily.
While these simple solutions are amazing to use on a day-to-day basis, it’s still important to know how to execute manual backups, or at least understand how the parts of the server work in relation to backups. We’ll cover this process in an upcoming post.
The Best Backup Solutions for WordPress
In Episode 25 of WP The Podcast, Divi and WordPress experts – David Blackmon of Aspen Grove Studios and Divi Space and Tim Strifler of Divi Life – shared their all-time favorite backup solutions.
- All In One WP Migration (David’s suggestion – a plugin, available in both free and paid versions)
- WP Engine (Tim’s suggestion – more than a backup solution, WP Engine is a multi-functional hosting service provider)
- Backup Buddy
Let’s break down these solutions a bit further.
All In One WP Migration
An easy to use plugin with an uncluttered interface that gets the job done without any fuss, All In One WP Migration is available for free via the WordPress repository.
Where manually transferring websites would take ages using an FTP client, the All In One WP Migration plugin lets you move whole websites by exporting or importing them at the click of a button.
With minimal effort, just clicking a few buttons really, an entire website, complete with its database, all of the site files and even customizer settings, will be moved to a new location.
All of this amazing functionality is available in the free version of the plugin. In the event that a website is over 500MB in size, the premium version will need to be purchased.
If need be, you could buy an additional extension that’ll allow you to automatically send a backup to a cloud-based storage system of your choice (Google Drive, DropBox for example).
While not explicitly a backup solution, software or plugin, WP Engine is a managed hosting service provider that offers backups at the host level on top of a plethora of services to make your WordPress website thrive.
Should you decide to host your or a client’s website with WP Engine, backups of your website will take place automatically at set intervals without you having to lift a finger.
In the event that you decide to make a change to a website just after a backup has been made, you can simply create a new backup, inclusive of the site updates, at the click of a button.
WP Engine is one of many options of hosts that offer secure backups as part of their service offering. Should you decide to opt for a host that includes backups in their offering, make sure that you research how the host is doing the backup, and pay particular attention to where they are sending and storing the backup itself. Here, make sure that the backed up files and database are being sent to a completely different server to that of your website to prevent loss of data, as in the event that your website’s server crashes, you don’t want to lose access to your site’s backup too.
One of the most popular backup solutions is BackupBuddy. Created by one of the first premium WordPress software development companies, iThemes, BackupBuddy is the oldest and one of the most trusted backup plugin around.
As well as similar functions as All In One WP Migration (site backups and migrations), BackupBuddy also offers a number of incredible enhanced security features.
An easy to use product with a lovely user interface, BackupBuddy is an incredibly powerful option to select as a backup (and migration) solution.
When it comes to backing up a WordPress website, it’s a good idea to have a good, steady system in place.
Our recommendation is to set up an easy to use backup and migration solution (as mentioned above), pair this with good hosting, and at least become familiar with the website’s server and how to navigate it with an FTP client should you need to run a manual backup.
We want to hear from you!
What is your system to backup your WordPress website? Do you use backup software to secure your website business?
If you have any questions or comments, share them below – we love receiving your feedback!
Thanks for reading!