Don’t skip this essential backup step

We talk ad nauseam about running backups on this blog + social media. Run a backup before you do your updates. Run a backup after you do your updates. Run a backup for the hell of it. Run a backup every week. Run a backup because it’s your birthday.

Ok, maybe not that last one…but you get the idea. Backups are a good thing for business owners.

The 2 types of backups

It is true that a backup is better than no backup, not all backups are created equal. With WordPress, there are two types of backups — database + full site.

A database backup is a copy of your WordPress database, which is geek speak for the entries that make up the content of your site. A database entry for your latest blog post would include the page title, permalink, date posted, author, page content (in HTML form), as well as any categories or tags you’ve assigned to that blog post.

A full site backup grabs all of the database content, but includes theme files, plugins + your media library (this is usually the most important part of any backup). While the database has your page content, it will only have the HTML to display an image, it will not save a copy of the image itself. This is why we recommend full site backups as the best option for any online business.

We’re not done yet though, because there’s one important step that most business owners miss when they run a full site backup. A step that has left many folks shit out of luck when their site got hacked, even though they had run a recent backup. A step that takes a few seconds of your time + can save you thousands of dollars.

Download your backup

If you are using a backup system that stores your backups in the same spot as your website, a hacker could easily delete those backups from existence before you even know your site has been hacked. Most plugins store backups in the uploads folder of your site, making those backups easy targets.

By downloading your latest backup to your computer, you are ensuring that you have a copy of your site that no one else can erase. You only need the latest 2 backups (better safe than sorry) + can delete older copies as you download newer one.

If you use our hosting services, your backups are stored on separate servers from your website. This is one of many ways that we protect our clients from hackers + crappy circumstances.

Downloading a backup a few times a year allows for redundancy, which is a nerd’s favorite thing. And it only takes a few minutes to do. If you have a VA or team member who uploads content to your site, this could be a great task for them to tackle each month.

Unless you did so already today, run a full site backup + then download that backup to your computer. Next, set a recurring task or calendar event to do it again in 4 weeks. Or hire someone (like us) to guarantee that your site won’t be lost to a hacker.

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