How to automatically backup a website with a free plugin

Sometimes is something left behind and “forgotten” but it’s always very important to regularly backup your WordPress website.

Why do I need to backup my website?

If you are a business owner and you use a website to make sales, or you’re passionate about blogging as a hobby or even as a full-time job, is important to regularly backup your website.

A backup is like a virtual copy of your site content (media files, pages, comments, database, etc) that can be stored outside of your actual website.

Imagine if one day your website get hacked (ARGH!) and hackers cancel everything. Or, while doing some updates, something goes wrong and the website doesn’t work properly. In this case, backup file is very helpful because you can “bring back” your website to where it was before something has happened. 

Manual VS. Scheduled backups

There are different ways to back your website up and both of them are important. You can choose to do backup manually or scheduled.

What’s the difference?

Is good to set scheduled backups because you can have peace of mind from your website. In this way, you are always sure that you’ve got at least a backup copy stored in your disks. If something happens. Also, is easy to set up and you don’t have to worry too much.

Certainly, not less important, is to create backups manually. In this way you can decide when it’s the right time to create a backup. For example, you are about to update your theme with the newest version: This is the perfect time when you need a manual backup because, if some files get lost during the installation, you won’t encounter any future problems. 

What’s the best thing to do

My advice is to set up a scheduled backup, once a day or a week depending on your website’s traffic, and create a manual backup when you have to do important changes/upgrades or things that can possibly make your website not working anymore.

In order to create a stress free backup process, I highly recommend to install a plugin that will help you and you’ll only need to push a button to start the backup.

After trying different backup plugins, my choice went for the one called UpdraftPlus.

How UpdraftPlus can help the backup process

UpdraftPlus is a free plugin available for WordPress websites. 

The plugin is very easy to use thanks to a intuitive interface, plus it gives a lot of option for being a completely free plugin.

For example, you can choose to store the back up on Google Drive or Dropbox and it will automatically upload it for you! So you don’t have to save it in your computer first and then to transfer it.

Furthermore, you have the option to choose between manual and scheduled plugin for a complete peace of mind.

Similarly, the premium version offers all these features plus some very useful add-ons to migrate or clone your website.

How to backup your website

First of all, you need to download and install the plugin on your WordPress website. Activate and open the plugin settings. 

Don’t worry if at first might seems complicated to set a backup up, a guide will help you through the process.

Once you’ve open the plugin settings, go in the “settings” tab. From here you’ll be able to set up the frequency of your scheduled backups. This depends entirely up to you, how “safe” you want and need to be.

Scrolling down you’ll be asked where you want to store the backup files. I personally go for Google Drive because I know it’s something I can access from anywhere. A very good thing is that you can choose more than one destination at once.

Last, but not least, it will ask you how you want to name the backup folder and what fils you want to include in the backup. The default settings are already very good so, if you don’t need any particular thing, I recommend to leave them just like that.

All done! Don’t forget to “Save Changes” and you’re ready to enjoy a stress free backup process without even worry about it. 

Alternatively, if you need to run a manual backup, you can easily do it from the plugin dashboard.

Just click on “Backup Now” and an on-demand backup will start. Once done, you can choose to save it on your computer or leave the files in the plugin.

Conclusion

Even if you’re running a small website is important to run regular backup. You probably had spent a lot of time, and maybe money, to built that website and certainly don’t want to vanish your effort.

Give it a try and let me know how you find the plugin! Or do you use other backup plugins? Let me know in the comment below.

Need help with creating a backup or restore an old one?