In this episode I'm going to share with you how not doing backups of my site almost ruined my business, before it had the chance to take off. I had to learn the hard way why it's a good thing to have a WordPress backup strategy in place when you're in online business.
When I was starting out, a few months in blogging, I had no idea that a thing like a WordPress backup strategy actually existed. I was blogging twice a week, generated quite some content and actually made a few bucks here and there. It wasn't a million dollar business, but it solely depended on my website being online.
Like most other bloggers I was focusing on content creation and promotion only, and didn't do backups of my site regularly or even implemented a WordPress backup strategy.
This was about to change when I had around 60 or so blog posts published.
One random Wednesday morning I couldn't access my site. I couldn't open the WordPress dashboard and the frontend of my site was gone too. My website was offline and there was nothing I could do.
300 daily unique visitors were seeing a site that doesn't work. And of course I didn't make any money with my website when it was offline.
Logging in to my web hosting account showed me that an automatic update did go wrong and messed up the theme and the plugins installed. I'm going to be honest with you, until today I have no idea which plugin or theme caused these problems.
Even being a web designer I wasn't aware of the risk of losing my website due to outside influences. So I bet there are countless bloggers facing the same issue.
What would it mean to you if your website stops working right NOW? Do you have a backup? (Tweet this)
Could you recover your data from a backup, because you were wise enough to have a WordPress backup strategy?
I had a backup that was a few weeks old, so it lacked around 5 blog posts, each at least 1.5k words. With the help of Google Cache I could recover the posts, but you bet it wasn't fun.
Nevertheless I was SO happy that I had made this random backup - and I knew it was about time to implement a fail-proof WordPress backup strategy.
I researched free plugins (because I didn't have money to spend on those things) and after testing a few I found BackWPUp. That's what I'm using now to create backups of all my sites and that's what I'm installing on all client sites too.
The video explains step-by-step how you can implement a WordPress backup strategy with BackWPUp that creates weekly backups of your site. The next video will be on recovering WordPress backups so that you have the full process at hand.
Of course there are some pretty good premium plugins for WordPress backups. My recommendation is BackupBuddy, which I've used on a few client sites. BackupBuddy makes it incredibly easy not only to backup sites, but also to restore them and move them to a new server. It's a handy plugin if you have a few bucks at hand.
I stayed with BackWP Up because I'm a geek and I actually enjoy fiddling around with technical stuff (not saying BackWPUp is hard to use), but BackupBuddy is a good investment if you'd rather work with a nicely designed plugin that has a bit more functionality.
How are you handling backups on your WordPress site? Do you have a weekly backup strategy like I do or don't you do backups at all? I'd love to hear about your experience in the comments, remember that I'm here to help!