Are you backing up your WordPress site regularly? Backing up your data on a regular basis (ideally daily) can help you recover lost data if your site gets hacked or goes down.
Fortunately, backing up your website is easy, as there are many WordPress plugins you can use to automate your daily backups.
Many of these plugins will even automatically store your backups to your Dropbox account.
The benefit of this is that you don’t have to take up precious space on your computer or laptop.
Depending on the size of your site and the data you are backing up, it can take up a lot of space, which can slow down your computer.
In addition, storing your backups locally can still make you vulnerable to losing them.
If your computer gets damaged or you otherwise lose access to your internal storage, you won’t be able to access your backups.
Storing your backups in the cloud makes them more secure.
Tip: Your Dropbox account might only be able to store a limited number of backups, depending on the size of your site.
However, many plugins will automatically delete previous backups to make room for the most recent ones.
In addition, you can sign up for Dropbox Pro, which costs $11.99/month ($9.99/month if billed yearly) and which allows for up to 2TB of storage instead of the 2GB offered in the free plan.
2TB should be more than enough for your backup needs.
Without further ado, the following are the top five WordPress plugins that allow you to schedule automatic backups to your Dropbox account.
BackupBuddy claims to be the original WordPress backup plugin.
According to their website, they have been backing up 500,000 websites since 2010.
What makes BackupBuddy different than many other backup plugins is that many plugins only back up the WordPress database.
However, BackupBuddy backs up the entire WordPress installation.
You can back up everything so that you don’t lose anything:
- Theme files
- Plugin files
- WordPress settings
- WordPress database
- Core WordPress files
- Your media library
- Custom post types
- Audio files
- And more
You can set up the plugin so that backups take place automatically, on a regular basis.
This can be as often as you want:
- Twice daily
- Every second day
- Twice a week
- Every week
- Every month
- And more
You might not always want to back up everything listed above.
You can set custom backup profiles or only back up files, for example.
You can schedule these different backup profiles at different times.
For example, you might want to back up your files every night but only back up your database once a week.
You can send your WordPress backups to third-party storage locations.
This includes Dropbox – just connect Dropbox to the plugin so that all downloaded backups are automatically stored in your Dropbox cloud.
Other remote places you can store your WordPress backups include Google Cloud, BackupBuddy Stash, Amazon S3, and more.
(You automatically get 1GB of free storage space in BackupBuddy Stash when you use BackupBuddy).
You can customize how many backups you want to store at the same time.
For example, if you decide to only store 30 backups, the earliest backups will be deleted whenever a new one comes in.
Whenever your site gets backed up, you can get an email notification.
This way, you can be informed of any errors or problems with the backup, such as if the backup wasn’t able to be completed.
BackupBuddy comes with ImportBuddy.
This is a tool that lets you instantly restore previous backups from wherever you stored them.
You can restore individual files if you need to go back to previous versions, restore your entire database, or even restore your entire WordPress site – including media, plugin files, image uploads, settings, and more.
BackupBuddy’s migration tool makes it easy to move your site to a new host (or from a temporary site to a live site).
Just use a backup copy of your site to create your new one.
You can even transfer your site to a new domain, and BackupBuddy will automatically replace all of your URLs.
There are some features that are only included in the Developer version.
This includes a Deployment feature that works with a WordPress staging environment, a CRON manager, and a mass text replacement tool.
Not only does BackupBuddy back up your site, but it will also regularly scan your site for malware to make sure it is safe.
You can also scan your database for any errors.
BackupBuddy has three plan options:
- Blogger – $80: One site
- Freelancer – $127: 10 sites
- Gold – $199: Unlimited sites and 5GB of free BackupBuddy Stash storage space
UpdraftPlus is one of the top 30 most popular WordPress plugins.
It has a 4.8-star rating out of 5.
It can back up sites of up to 100GB, including non-WordPress files and external databases.
You can create manual backups, or you can schedule them so they take place regularly:
- Every four hours
- Every eight hours
- Every 12 hours
- Every day
- Every week
- Every two weeks
- Every month
You can customize when these backups take place and at which time.
You can schedule backups in increments or schedule files and databases to be backed up at different times.
In addition, your site will be automatically backed up whenever a new update is installed, whether it is a core WordPress update, a theme update, or a plugin update.
Backups can be stored remotely in your DropBox account.
All you need to know to set it up with Dropbox is your username and password.
You don’t have to worry about interrupted backups due to a poor internet connection; UpdraftPlus supports chunk backups (backups will automatically resume where they left off).
You can also store your backups to Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, RackSpace, and UpdraftVault Storage (you will get 1GB of free storage space in UpdraftVault Storage when you sign up).
You can even back up your files to more than one destination at once.
For example, to be extra sure you don’t lose your files, you can have them backed up to Amazon Cloud, Google Cloud, and Dropbox with one backup.
As your backups are completed, you will see their status in your WordPress admin dashboard. Any errors will be displayed.
You will also see logs and debug errors.
You can easily restore backups.
This is made easier by the fact that different backup types, such as databases, plugins, themes, etc, will be restored in separate files.
You can even restore backups made with another backup service.
Migrating your site is easy with UpdraftPlus as well.
UpdraftPlus works with WordPress Network and Multisite installs.
You can restore individual sites within the network without having to restore all of them.
UpdraftPlus has some features that BackupBuddy does not have, including:
- Automatic restore
- Automatic backups before updates are installed
- The ability to back up encrypted databases and decrypt them when restoring them
- Multisite support
- OneDrive storage backup
- Microsoft Azure storage backup
- Restore backups made with other plugins
- And more
UpdraftPlus is free to use.
However, UpdraftPlus Premium gives you access to all of their features, including:
- Incremental backups
- Cloning and migration
- Automatic backups before updates
- Back up non-WP files
- Multisite support
- Backup scheduling
- Reporting and email notifications
- Import backups from other plugins
- Lock UpdraftPlus settings
- No ads
- And more
Prices for premium are as follows:
- Personal – $72/year: Two sites
- Business – $95/year: 10 sites
- Agency – $145/year: 35 sites
- Enterprise – $195/year: Unlimited sites
- Gold – $399/year: Unlimited Updraft licenses, 50GB of UpdraftVault Storage, and an annual UpdraftCentral Cloud subscription
When you sign up for automatic rebilling, however, you will get 40 percent off when your subscription renews.
This means that for the second year, it will be $42 for the Personal plan, $57 for the Business plan, etc.
WordPress Backup to Dropbox is a simple plugin that does exactly what its name says it does.
One of the best parts about this plugin is that it is entirely free to use.
After installing the plugin from the WordPress plugin database, you can connect your Dropbox account by simply clicking the Authorize button in your settings dashboard.
Then, continue to your scheduling section.
You can set which day and time of the day you want your backups to be performed, as well as the frequency (daily, weekly, etc).
Manual backups can be performed at any time.
You can also choose which Dropbox file you want your backups to be stored to.
You can exclude files and directories that you do not want to be backed up.
Again, Backup WordPress to Dropbox is entirely free to use.
However, there are some premium add-ons you can buy.
Zip Backup makes a zip file of your site before uploading it to Dropbox.
It costs $9 for one site and $99 for unlimited sites.
Email Notifications sends you emails whenever a backup is completed or runs into errors. It costs $19 for one site and $99 for unlimited sites.
Although WP2D might not have as many features as the other two plugins listed above, it is entirely free to use.
If you have a limited budget, it is a great choice.
BackWPUp is another popular plugin that can be used to back up your entire WP database or your plugins.
There is both a free and a paid version.
For all of your backups, you will get backup archives and activity logs.
You can even get your log reports via email.
You can back up all of your files and update files to your own webspace or to the network.
You can also automatically have your backups stored to third-party storage services, such as Dropbox, S3, Microsoft Azure, Rackspace, Amazon Glacier, and SugarSync (you can also store it anywhere via FTP).
BackWPUp supports multi-site networks.
It also comes with wizards to walk you through backup processes, including backup job, system test, and import job setting wizards.
You can also set it up so that your backups are automatically restored if your site runs into serious issues.
BackWPUp comes with full support and documentation so that you can get answers to any questions you have.
BackWPUp has an automatic restore option that makes it super easy to restore previous versions of your site or files. You can restore backup archives and encrypted backups as well.
There is even a standalone app for emergency backup restorations.
There are several plan options.
Of course, there is a free plan, which allows you to take care of your basic backup needs.
However, the premium plans offer better support and additional features, such as automatic restoration options.
Here are the premium plan options:
- Standard – $69/year, $39/year when renewing: One WordPress site
- Business – $119/year, $59/year when renewing: Five WordPress sites
- Developer – $199/year, $99/year when renewing: 10 sites
- Supreme – $279/year, $149/year when renewing: 25 sites
- Agency – $349/year, $199/year when renewing: 100 sites
- Custom – If you need to use the plugin for more than 100 sites, you can contact BackWPUp for a custom plan
BlogVault offers a suite of tools for WordPress bloggers, and that includes a WordPress backup tool.
Here is what the BlogVault backup tool backs up:
- Theme files
- Plugin files
- WordPress settings
- Media Library uploads
- Custom post types
- WordPress database
- Theme settings
- WordPress core files
- Plugin settings
- Users’ details
All backups are stored on BlogVault’s own servers.
This means that they will not overload your site or take up space on your computer.
It also means that you can access your backups even when your site is down and is inaccessible.
You can make multiple copies of your site and store them in different places.
All backups are encrypted and stored on Amazon S3 servers to keep them safe.
In addition, you can upload your backups to either DropBox or Google Drive.
The backups will not slow down your site.
This is because they are intelligent incremental backups, which means that they will only need to backup new changes you made so that you have less server load.
You can view all of your backups for the past 90 days in your BlogVault dashboard.
You have complete control over your backups.
You can choose to back up only files or databases, and you can schedule your backups to take place daily or whenever you want.
In addition, you can make as many on-demand manual backups as you want.
You can even back up non-WP files.
BlogVault’s WordPress Restore tool allows you to restore previously backed-up versions of your site with just a few clicks.
Not only that, but you can actually test out your backups before you restore them in a special staging environment.
The WordPress staging tool is great not just for restoring backups.
It also allows you to test out new plugin and theme updates without breaking your site and merge changes back to your new site with just a few clicks.
The staging environment works by creating an exact copy of your live site that is separate from your actual site.
This allows you to test out new features and changes without affecting your live site; when you want to, you can transfer your changes to your live site with just two clicks.
You can use this staging tool with any host and without incurring additional costs.
BlogVault is also very useful when you need to migrate your site to a new host.
It is compatible with most web hosts (over 10,000 web hosts, in fact), so all you have to do is enter your FTP details for the process to start.
There is no downtime, and the entire process will be taken care for you automatically.
You can migrate all of your files and your entire database; you can even migrate non-WP content.
The entire process takes just two steps.
If you have a Woocommerce site, you can also benefit from both the backup and migration tools.
The way it works with Woocommerce sites is that whenever a new event occurs, the system identifies it and backs it up.
All of the backups will then be stored on Google Drive and BlogVault servers.
Multiple copies are made.
Ecommerce sites often need more than just one backup a day, and with BlogVault, all of your changes will be backed up automatically.
There will be no downtime associated with your backups, and you can access your entire backup history for the past 365 days.
BlogVault also comes with WordPress security features, including automatic malware scans, automatic malware removal, login protection, and a firewall.
In addition, it offers WordPress management features, such as updates, team member collaboration tools, site performance checks, uptime monitoring, and website hardening.
BlogVault has 10 plan options, and it will be hard to go through all of them and their features. Here is the pricing page for more information.
The basic plans, however, are only three:
- Basic: Daily backups, 90 days of backup access, no WordPress security features, and all WordPress management features except team member support and uptime monitoring
- Plus: Adds WordPress security features
- Advanced: Adds Woocommerce support and includes all features, also adds up to 365 days of backup access
For one site, plans are as follows:
- Basic: $89/year or $7.40/month
- Plus: $149/year or $12.40/month
- Advanced: $249/year or $20.75/month
However, these prices will change if you sign up for “Small Business” (up to five sites) or “Developers” (up to 20 sites).
You can also get custom pricing for additional sites.
Why Backup Your Site In the First Place?
Before we wrap things up, it is worth going over why you should be using one of the above plugins in the first place.
Is it really that important to back up your site regularly?
Here are the top reasons to back up your site (and why you should back it up to the cloud, in particular):
- Protect against hackers: If someone hacks your site and it gets ruined, you will need to first clear up the malware. However, after it is cleaned up, you need to be able to restore your site to the way it was.
- Fix bad updates: Sometimes, you can install a plugin, theme, update, or any other website add-on and it could just ruin your site or change it from the way you wanted it to be. If you have a backup of your site, you can always restore it to how it was before the update was installed.
- Protect against mistakes: Human error can also be a factor. You or one of your team members can make mistakes and make edits that you don’t want.
- Protect against deletions: A common human error can include deleting information by mistake. Perhaps you gave a team member more permissions than they should have received and they were too inexperienced to guard your data properly. If you backed up your site, you can restore your data.
- Make migration easy: If you are transferring your site to a new host, having a backup to work with makes things much easier. You can also retain your data if anything goes wrong during the migration process.
- Test out changes: Having a backup to work with is also important if you want to set up a staging environment.
- Protect against physical damage: If you only download a backup of your site to your physical computer, you can end up losing it. Your computer can break down or get physically damaged due to bad weather conditions, such as flooding. It can even get stolen and/or hacked. Backing your site up to the cloud, especially if you are making several copies in multiple locations, is the best solution.
Wrapping It Up
Many WordPress owners have neglected to back up their sites and only learned their lessons the hard way.
Be proactive and start backing your site up to the cloud with one of the five plugins listed above.