Anyone who blogs on a regular basis can attest to the fact that keeping a blog takes a lot of time and energy. A variety of aspects go into creating a well-written and thought-out blog post. Creating, editing, or even purchasing, images to make the post look visually appealing, also takes a lot of time. Many bloggers dedicate this time out of love for the community they have built. Others do it out of necessity to earn a small amount of money. Others blog only for themselves, and might not even share their blog with anyone, but use it for a private online journal.
Imagine the horror of pulling up your blog URL only to find a blank screen. White. Nothing. All of that hard work, time, and commitment is gone! And, you have no idea why? I’m sure many of you have experienced the shock and horror of this happening, whether it was your fault (editing the php files to get the White Screen of Death (WSOD)) or possibly the result of a hacker. The feeling is crushing, and a white screen can happen in the blink of an eye.
That is why backing up your blog is so vitally important. The great thing about blog backups is that they are super easy to set up, often can be scheduled, and can occur in the background of your site without interrupting you and your workflow.
If you are using the Blogger platform, you’ll have to back up your site manually and save the file to your computer. Just go to Template >> Backup/Restore (upper right-hand corner) >> Download full template. Maybe, in the future, Blogger will implement an automatic feature. That would be nice!
If you are using a self-hosted WordPress account (Congratulations!), then you are working with the best and have a variety of backup options available to you. With your self-hosted site, YOU are responsible for your content, files, backups, etc… Don’t let that intimidate you. Don’t get overwhelmed. Just get prepared. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is.
I personally use BackupBuddy for my site and all of my clients sites. It is a paid plugin (I purchased the Developer’s License), and since I have implemented it, I find backing up or restoring a site to be as easy as a few clicks. I even created a video on how I use it (available for purchase). I’ll get into some more details shortly, but just wanted to mention a free option first. BackWPup is a WordPress plugin that has excellent ratings and as I mentioned, is FREE. So, if you aren’t currently using a plugin to backup your site, you should look into this one.
Back to BackupBuddy. What I absolutely love the most about it, is the fact that it not only backs up your database, but it backs up all of your theme files and plugins (and all of the tricky and pesky settings within those plugins)! You can schedule a backup to occur on a monthly, weekly or daily basis and it will happen automatically. You can set it up to do a Full backup or a Complete backup. You can set a destination for your backup to go to Dropbox, or to a BUB Stash account. And, this plugin is heavily supported! There is a forum where you can find any answers while trying to troubleshoot.
By taking just a little bit of time to set up a scheduled backup, you will be prepared in the event if your site goes down.
Keep in mind that Site Maintenance is a service that I provide. So, if you don’t want to worry about it, let me do it for you. For a monthly, I will take care of backing up your entire site, sending it somewhere safe for you, and will restore your site (free of charge) in the event it is needed. If you want peace of mind, contact me for more details.
If you want to do it yourself, just please make sure you are making regular backups so you know you’ll have the ability to restore your site and not lose all of the time and commitment into making your site the awesome place on the web that it is!