A Complete WordPress Backup Guide

WordPress Backup

One of Popular Content management system (CMS) WordPress is preferred by most of the businesses. It has become a most popular platform to develop online presence of your business. 

If you have developed your web presence using WordPress CMS, you might have important information related to your company within it. Backup is an important part of WordPress security measures and you can not ignore it. If the information gets lost due to some technical error, you may face a huge loss in your business or your business might not run properly. WordPress Backup is just what you need to know to make sure you dont face the loss.

If you are getting trouble on backing up your site, then this article is for you. Through this article, I will provide you proper guidance to backup your WordPress website in multiple ways including manual backups and using WordPress backup plugins.

Table of Contents

When should you backup your WordPress website?

So, lets start with when should you backup your website or when are they actually needed.

  • Scheduled Backups: Backups are necessary, schedule them regularly to stay free from unexpected problems.
  • Before Major Updates: You should make a backup of your website before you make any changes to your website. Anything from updating your core files to making content changes.
  • After Major Updates: So, you’ve updated your PHP . Now, make a copy of the new updated website to save new changes.
  • Before Installing New Plugins or Themes: Installing a plugin or theme, backup your website, you might lose it all when these themes or plugins create issues.
  • Before and After Migrating Your Website: Migration is such a big task, why risk it all. Backup your website before migration to ensure safety if anything unexpected happens. And if migrated successfully, backup again to save new changes.
  • After Cleaning Malware or Security Issues: You had attack on your website or a security threat and you removed it. So, now you need to backup the clean version of your website.
  • After Completing User actions or E-commerce Transactions: If events and suer actions are important on your website, you need to make an incremental backup to ensure no further issues. It also helps to save customer and company data.

Find here some of the ways to backup your WordPress website:

Backup the WordPress files manually

WordPress directory consists of different types of subfolders namely WP-content, WP-includes and so on; moreover, it also contains files like WP-config.php, theme and plug-in file desired by WordPress website. You should not lose these data as WP-admin contains each and every file needed by your WordPress admin part. It is the main folder where every main WordPress codes are situated.

You definitely face a  trouble, if you lose this code. Thus, to produce a copy of your WordPress file, you have to download the complete WordPress directory by logging to the server through a cPanel or make use of the program like FileZilla or Transmit.

Backup through cPanel

Simple ways to backup your WordPress website through cPanel:

1. Login to the web host and find the way to cPanel

2.  Go to File Manager which leads you towards your home directory or public_html

3.  Then, locate your WordPress directory, the folder you desire to backup

4. Sadly you are unable to download WordPress folder with a File Manager devoid of compressing it. Do not worry; you can easily compress the folder

5. Go to WordPress directory and choose compress which is in menu bar otherwise you can also right-click the folder and select compress from drop down menu option

6. You can select the compression type available namely ZIP, Tar, GZIP and so on from the dialog box

7. After that, click on the button of compression file and wait till the procedure runs and the server will start  saving your compressed WordPress folder

8. Hit the archive button and select Download from the menu

9. Find the protected location within your hard disk for the WordPress backup

10. Finally, Your information is secured

Use FTP to backup Your WordPress file

FileZilla can be handy to backup your WordPress file using FTP, as it contains lightweight and is simple to utilise. You just need to login on your server and place WordPress directory and download the file to your computer. For this procedure, you need to create an FTP account, in order to use FTP as it is simple to set up through FTP manager within cPanel.

Automated WordPress Backup

Manual backups are considered traditional nowadays and using automated backups have a number of advantages. Backups are crucial, cant be skipped so its better to keep them in the schedule and plans. Various plugins offer automatic scheduled backups. 

Choose your backup frequency as much as you make changes to your website. Automatic backups can be stored in different online and offline storages. Planning automated backups can save you from a ton of data loss and misuse.

Best WordPress Backup Plugins

Backing up your WordPress website data is no more a hassle now. You can use these user friendly backup plugins. These plugins are super easy to use and configure. And, once you configure it once you are ready to go. Choose your backup mode, frequency and location to get started.

Try out these Backup plugins to start out:


BackupBuddy is a complete backup plugin for WordPress websites with some very useful features. It is easy to use and you do not have to worry about support. It offers scheduled and full site backups. Apart from backups, it also offers website migration.


This is one of my personal favorite. Updraftplus offers all the features you need and that too in the free version. It is one of the most popular WordPress backup plugins. This plugin allows scheduled backups to cloud storage services like Dropbox, Google Drive, and Amazon S3. 

In addition to these, it also offers incremental and selective backups allowing you to be more efficient. 


It is a part of the Jetpack plugin suite, VaultPress offers real-time cloud backups and security scanning. Its USP is more around realtime backups and additional security options.

Read more on our blog – WordPress backup plugins.

Plan for a regular WordPress backup

Regular backup helps will keep you away from the problem which may arise due to loss of important files and information. Thus, you need to plan for a regular backup. WordPress backup plugins like Backupbuddy can be helpful backing up regularly. So, through this plug-in, you can backup your file weekly or daily as you desire.

Testing Backups

Only storing files is not a comprehensive approach to securing your website. What if your backups can not be restored due to some reason maybe technical or human. So, it is best to test your website backups before relying on them. 

Try restoring your test backups and see if it can actually save you in the time of need. Store the backups in different locations and storage, try restoring them in different approaches like incremental and selective. This way, your crucial data will always be secured. 


Backing up your file within a WordPress website helps you to acquire the files and data again if it gets lost. So make proper use of these tips and backup your file today. This benefits your business from the loss of valuable data and information.

Backing up your WordPress website is an essential aspect of website management and WordPress security. It provides a safety net against potential data loss and cyber threats, ensuring your online presence remains protected. By understanding the different backup methods, storage options, and best practices outlined in this guide, you can confidently implement a robust backup strategy for your WordPress website.

Are you looking for a technical WordPress Support Partner in Sydney? Send us a message now.


Does WordPress automatically backup?

No, WordPress does not automatically backup unless your web host has some method for it or you have a plugin that automates WordPress backup.

Can you recover a WordPress website with all its files?

Yes, you can recover a WordPress website with all its files if you have a backup of the website with all the files. This implies if you have a plugin setup for regular backups or web hosting provider who provides regular backup services or you have saved your website files manually in a safe storage. 

Where are WordPress backups stored?

WordPress backups can be stored at almost all storage locations available. If you are manually making a backup of your website, you can store the file anywhere your like. Similarly, backup plugins also offer storage options like local storage, FTP storage, cloud like Google Drive or One Drive or even Amazon server.

Is it possible to back up only the theme files?

Yes, it is possible to backup only the theme files. You may use plugins or download the plugin files manually as a backup. Plugins like Updraftplus allow you to create selective and incremental backups. But it is not generally recommended to make a backup of only one specific part unless you have another purpose.

How can I test my backups?

You can test your backups in different ways. For one, you can create a staging environment. Or, you can use a local server to restore your backups and test their integrity and usability. 

What is the best backup frequency?

The best backup frequency for a website is the exact same frequency as the website updates. This means if you update your website twice a week or your website changes twice a week, you need to backup atleast twice a week. Regularly updated websites can schedule backups on a daily basis while other can opt for less frequent backups.

Can I rely solely on automated backups?

Yes, you can rely on automated backups but it is important to check and test the backup files once in a while.

Updated on: 6 October 2015 |

Nirmal Gyanwali, Director of WP Creative

Nirmal Gyanwali

With over 16 years of experience in the web industry, Nirmal has built websites for a wide variety of businesses; from mom n’ pop shops to some of Australia’s leading brands. Nirmal brings his wealth of experience in managing teams to WP Creative along with his wife, Saba.