Creating and managing a website takes a lot of hard work. Unfortunately, there are a number of factors that can cause it to malfunction or crash. It’s a critical situation to be in as you’d lose more customers the longer your site is down. Even after installing only trusted plugins and ensuring the security of your website, the risk of losing data is still not down to zero. In that case, you should consider using some of the best WordPress backup plugins.
Some of the factors that can cause errors or downtime on your site are:
- A problem with your host
- Missed payment deadline
- Technical error on your part
When you backup your website would ensure that you never lose your data! You can have peace of mind knowing you have a copy stored safely.
Why pick an external backup solution?
While it may be tempting to rely solely on the backup service provided by your hosting provider, this is far from a fail-proof solution. Here are three main reasons why –
Where your backups are stored is crucial to the security of your backups and your web host is not the ideal destination for your WordPress backups. If your backups are stored by your web host on your site’s server, they are exposed to the same threats as your WordPress website. That’s not all. In the case of shared hosting, the risk is far higher as backups may be vulnerable if any other site on the server is exploited
One of the main issues with relying on a host’s backup solution is the frequency of backup. Relying on a host’s backup usually means you have no control over how frequently the site backs up.
A backup of your site that’s not easy to restore isn’t much use, is it? Often, the restore process provided by your WordPress hosting service leaves much to be asked. As backups are often considered add-on features, the process isn’t user-friendly and often involves more advanced technical operations making it quite a challenge if you consider yourself a non-technical user.
While any backup is better than no backup, we strongly recommend that you use an external backup plugin for the safety of your website and the peace of mind it promises.
What should you look for in a backup plugin?
Since there are dozens of WordPress backup plugins available, it can be tricky to choose the right one that fits your needs. Here are a few things you’ll need to look for in a backup plugin for WordPress:
1. Easy to use
The backup plugin should be simple so that you can get your tasks done with minimal time wasted. Look for things like automatic scheduling and auser-friendly dashboard.
You should be able to customise your backups in terms of scheduling it either automatically or when you want. You should also be able to back up all changes made, or select only what you require.
3. Website Performance
The backup process should not affect your website performance and load time. Choose a plugin which provides offsite backups that carry on the work without your website’s speed taking a hit.
4. Options for Download
Your backup plugin should ideally allow you to download your backup to a local computer, or upload it to Google Drive or Dropbox. This will allow you to store your own copy and also have multiple backup copies.
5. Easy restore
The backup should be quick and easy to restore. If this is not possible, then the purpose of a backup is defeated. If the website goes down, you should be able to recover it immediately. This will reduce the downtime of your site and ensure your users are not affected.
6. WordPress Security
The plugin should tell you where your backups are stored. Ensure that your data is on secured servers. Your backup copy contains sensitive data that should not be left exposed to hackers. So encryption of data in your backup is extremely important.
Best WordPress Backup Plugin (Pros & Cons)
We’ve listed out five WordPress Backup plugins that offer reliable backup solutions and make your life easy:
1. BlogVault Backup Plugin
One of the most reliable WordPress backup solutions trusted by over 400,000+ websites, Blogvault is more than just a WordPress plugin. A feature that sets BlogVault apart is the incremental backup method. This way your site isn’t backed up as a whole every time, only changes made are added to the backup. This ensures optimal performance for your site especially if your site is a large one.
Your site performance is never affected as the backups happen offsite onto BlogVault and Amazon S3 servers. You can download your backup to a local computer or upload to Dropbox.
You can choose between automatic scheduling or custom backups. Plus, you get unlimited on-demand backups which means you can create a backup anytime you like.
It has a free in-built staging feature that enables you to make and test the changes on a staging site. You can then merge the test site with the live one.
For WooCommerce sites, BlogVault offers real-time backup that stores the latest data. So you’ll never lose vital customer data and purchase orders.
BlogVault makes it easy to restore your backup and get your website up and running in no time. Lastly, all these functions can be carried out from the independent dashboard so you don’t have to waste time figuring out what to do.
- 1-click Restore option
- 90 days of backup history.
- Your backups are encrypted and stored securely.
- Multisite backups, real-time backups, on-demand backups.
- Customer support in case you face any issues.
- BlogVault is a paid plugin.
Starting at $7.4 per month. With premium plugin plans, you also get security features.
UpdraftPlus is one of the most popular backup solutions for WordPress with over a million active installations.
The free version of UpdraftPlus supports custom and scheduled backups and you can select the parts of your website that you want to back up.
The process of restoring your files is simple, and can easily be done even by someone with minimal technical knowledge.
It also supports multiple cloud storage destination including Google Drive, Dropbox, and Amazon S3.
- Trusted by over 1 million sites.
- Customer support is available.
- The premium backup plan supports cloning, migration, and user protection to limit backup access.
- The free version limits support to the Updraft Plus
- Some users say that the advanced configurations can be a little difficult to understand and implement.
Free, which is ideal for small site owners. Updraft Premium Personal is priced at $70 annually for 2 sites.
BackupBuddy is a popular premium backup and restore plugin from iThemes and has been around for nearly a decade. It supports complete backup from the WordPress dashboard.
You can schedule automatic backups and restoration of your files quickly.
It also offers its own Backup Buddy Stash service for storage and management of backups on the cloud. It offers some unique features like database repair and optimization.
You can also set up automatic full-site backups to cloud storage options like Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon S3, and more.
- 1 GB of BackupBuddy Stash service for cloud backups.
- Unique features like database repair and optimization.
- iThemes’s backup storage Stash Live is free but for most of their plans, you’ll need to pay for it after the first year.
- It doesn’t offer on-demand backups.
$49 annually for Blogger Plan (1 Site License)
VaultPress is created by Automattic, the company behind WordPress. It is powered by JetPack and provides a backup and security solution.
It provides automatic backups and offers cloud storage for backups.
Some other great additions are real-time backup monitoring, daily website scans, and unlimited storage.
Its security features also offer brute force attack protection, uptime monitoring and spam protection for comments and pingbacks.
- Trusted as it is designed and built by Automattic.
- Security features included in higher plans.
- Subscription is per site. This may be an expensive option if you own multiple WordPress sites.
- You need a Jetpack subscription and a WordPress.com account to use it.
The last entry in the list is not a backup plugin but is a WordPress management solution that offers a reliable backup features as part of its dashboard.
This backup includes monthly backups scheduled. You also get off-site storage (EU/US choice), and the option to exclude WordPress files and folders.
For on-demand backups, weekly/daily/hourly backup cycles, you would need to upgrade to the premium version.
- The free backup is ideal for small websites and/or websites with static content.
- Competitive pricing.
- Since this is a WordPress management console, the excessive options can appear to be confusing to new or early users.
- Some online user reviews mention they observed slowness of the service and trouble with backing of large sites.
The backup plugin is $2 per month. Since they offer multiple plugins, pricing is per site, per add-on.
Why are paid WordPress Backup Plugins better than free ones?
With free WordPress Backup Plugins, you get access to limited features. Most of the comprehensive features that are much needed for your site come with premium plans.
When you opt for premium plans with some of the plugins, you also get security of your website taken care of. Another reason why paid trumps free is the customer support provided. When you opt for a paid version, you usually get customer service that will help you resolve any queries.
The only time you should consider a free plugin is if you have financial constraints and simply cannot fit the backup plugin cost in your budget.
While the five backup plugins we mentioned all provide an array of features, you need to choose one that’s best for you. All plugins have their pros and cons, but we’ve narrowed down the list based on the features offered.
If you’re looking for an all-in-one solution at a competitive price, BlogVault is your answer. The plugin is user-friendly and doesn’t need much technical knowledge. At the same time, it gives you access to so many features that allow you to backup, restore, stage, secure, migrate, and manage your website very easily.
If you need a free plugin, we suggest UpdraftPlus. Though limited features are available, you’d get access to the easy-to-use interface, simple process of backup and restore, and customisable backup options.
Now that you know more about the available WordPress Backup Plugins and the benefits they provide, we hope this helps you figure out which is the best one for you!