What's one thing everyone should do but probably doesn't when it comes to their data? Back it up? You know you should, but well, there's more immediate needs right? Until that day...the day you dread. Something happens. Your hard-drive crashes, there's a virus, somehow your drive gets formatted. All your data, gone. What about your website? Do you back that up too? Website downtime can harm your business, but what about lost data how much damage could that do?
Fortunately, regularly backing up your websites will ensure that you can mitigate any downtime or damage that might occur from a hacker, glitch with your host, or a tragic mis-click. Here are three options to back up your site and prepare for the worst.
Ask Your Host
Many hosts offer backup services. Some include them in various hosting packages or as add-ons. Check with your hosting provider to see what services are available for you and if you can scheduled backups.
Use a Plugin
If you are using a CMS like WordPress there are many plugins available to backup your sites for you. Set your backup schedule then let the plugin do it's job. Usually they will email you your backed up site.
Back Up Manually
You can of course back up your sites manually. This can be done over either ftp or SSH. This option might not be for everyone, as it does require slightly more technical familiarity than the other two options. However if you have a web development team, or developer at your disposal they will be more than able to handle it.
How Often Should You Back Up Your Site?
This will depend on the nature of your site, and how often it's updated. Sites that are infrequently updated may only need to be updated every month. Others with more frequent updates, may need to be updated every week, or even every few days. There are some instances where you should backup your site no matter what:
- Installing new plugins & themes
- Updating new plugins, themes, and CMS versions
- Prior to any major site changes
Planning for the worst might not be fun, but in the event the worst does happen a properly executed backup plan can save the day. How often do you backup your site and what is your preferred method?