WordPress backups

Regular backups of your WordPress site ensure should the worst happen you’ll be able to get your site back up and running quickly with minimal downtime.

Update problems

Before running anything other than minor updates to your WordPress is site it’s recommended to perform a backup. This should include all the files, folders and the database that make up your website. This ensures that if a problem occurs whilst updating your site you can quickly revert to a working copy before investigating further.

Hardware failures

Higher quality hosting companies regularly update their hardware, the servers where you website lives, perform regular backups and offer redundancy by having multiple copies of your website on different machines. However this isn’t always the case, and even if you think you’re covered it’s worth having your own backup plan in place – just in case.

Hacking

If your WordPress site has been hacked the quickest way to get it back up and running is to simply replace all the files and database with those from a backup made before the hacking took place. But you do need to make sure everything is updated and secure after this – otherwise the site will still be an easy target. A backup of the hacked site is useful to help diagnose how the attack took place.

 

What to backup?

WordPress sites use files, folders and a database, both need to be backed up

Files and Folders

WordPress, Plugins, Themes and all your uploaded files (images, documents etc.) are all just files organised into folders – just like on your home computer. The actual pages of your website aren’t physical files at all – they are text stored in a database instead.

Database

In WordPress a database is used to store the text content of your website; pages, comments, users, passwords and all the settings associated with your website. All the things that can be edited are stored in the database so changes are quick and easy.

How often should my site be backed up?

This really depends on the nature of the website, how critical the site is to you or your business, how often new content is added, whether new files are uploaded, and whether your site features e-commerce, memberships or similar functionality.

A couple of examples;

A simple basic site

New content is added monthly, commenting is switched off.

  • Monthly backup of the files
  • Monthly backup of the database

A complex e-commerce site

No new products are added, the site has new orders every week.

  • Monthly backup of the files
  • Weekly backup of the database*

*Customer orders are stored in the database – so update frequency increased

My approach to WordPress backups

  • Backup frequency decided by site use and nature.
  • Backups scheduled via hosting or a WordPress plugin.
  • Backups stored off-site for peace-of-mind.
  • Backup restoration process tested.

WordPress backups are offered as an add-on to both the Personal Plan and Professional Plan.