This morning I broke my WordPress website. Literally. My entire website disappeared.
In the old days before I had a WordPress backup service, that would have been the cause of major panic and stress!
However, this morning I simply logged into an online service I use called BlogVault, clicked a few buttons, and hey presto… my site was restored to it’s former working glory.
It only took a few minutes, without any stress or problems at all.
This reminded me how how worried I used to be before I had a decent WordPress backup service in place.
Whenever I did anything in WordPress—adding new plugins or updating the main WordPress core software—I always held my breath in case anything broke!
Of course it usually broke just after I’d sent an email to my more than ten thousand email subscribers, giving them a link to my (now broken!) website!
(I think that’s called “Sod’s Law!”)
Anyway, that’s why, many years ago, I decided to put two things in place.
The first was a…
WordPress Backup Service
BlogVault is an online service that automatically takes a backup of my entire WordPress website, including my posts, images, and comments — every 6 hours, every day, all year round.
Now I know some readers may say “But hang on Ed, most hosting companies backup their client’s websites anyway, so I don’t need to pay someone else to do it for me!”
Most web hosting companies do take backups.
However, those backups may not fully restore your WordPress website if it ever breaks.
For example, one of my previous web hosting companies did take backups—but I had to actually pay them to restore those backups.
Also, they seemed to take forever to do it… and when it was restored it was weeks old!!
It was hopeless and very frustrating, and yet again another reason why I decided to invest in a third party backup service.
Obviously, if you restore a really old backup, and you’ve done a lot of work on your site since the backup was taken, then you’ll have no option but to sit down and try and redo all your hard work.
If you have an active community on your WordPress site, leaving comments and the like, then all of that will be lost too, when you restore an old backup.
For this reason I don’t recommend you rely on your web hosting company for backups. It’s far too important if you perform content marketing in the way I recommend.
If you don’t have a third party backup service in place at the moment, then I highly recommend you get one, as soon as possible!
If you want to give yourself complete peace of mind, then there are plenty of options, but BlogVault is the one I recommend.
I’ve used Blogvault for many years now, and it makes it super easy to backup and restore. I can’t recommend them highly enough.
It may sound a tad melodramatic, but it’s saved my life on more than one occasion!
One other thing.
Once you’ve got a backup service in place, you may also want to set up…
Website Uptime & Malware Monitoring
I also use a service called Sucuri, which instantly tells me if my WordPress site ever breaks, or gets attacked by hackers.
Sucuri automatically scans my website every hour, every day all year round.
First of all it checks my website is actually working. If my ‘site is down’ then it automatically notifies me.
Next, it automatically scans my site for nasty hacking attacks which could have affected my site in some way.
The reason it does this — and hopefully this has never happens to you — but hackers are continually prowling the web.
They’re looking for WordPress sites they can ‘inject’ with hidden code, to make it automatically redirect anyone who visits, on to some rather ‘naughty’ websites.
(I’m sure you can imagine what kind of sites I’m talking about!)
It’s quite embarrassing to have your email subscribers let you know you’ve been hacked… especially after you’ve just emailed more than ten thousand of them with a link to your new blog post!
(That actually happened to me. Like I said… ‘rather embarrassing!’)
Thankfully the Malware monitoring service I use not only scans my site for infections it also automatically removes them for me too.
So that service is great, and in conjunction with BlogVault I’ve (hopefully) got all my bases covered.
Do You Really Need All of This?
I admit could live without the monitoring and malware service. I update my blog so often I would soon find out if it was offline.
Also, if I do ever find out my site is infected with malware I could always restore a previous backup.
So yes, the backup service is absolutely essential in my opinion.
I certainly no longer go into meltdown when my site throws an error!
Anyway, please leave a comment below if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to answer them.
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