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How to Backup a WordPress Site

The Ultimate Guide to Safeguarding Your WordPress Site with Backups.

Regularly backing up your WordPress site is crucial for safeguarding your data and allowing for recovery in case of any accidental loss, hacking, or system crashes. There are multiple methods for backing up your site, and this comprehensive guide will walk you through some of the most effective approaches.

Method 1: Using a WordPress Backup Plugin

Step 1: Choose a Backup Plugin

There are many WordPress backup plugins available. Some popular options include:

  • UpdraftPlus
  • BackupBuddy
  • VaultPress (Jetpack)

Step 2: Install and Activate the Plugin

  1. Go to your WordPress dashboard.
  2. Navigate to Plugins > Add New.
  3. Search for the backup plugin of your choice, then Install and Activate it.

Step 3: Configure Backup Settings

  1. After activation, go to the plugin settings.
  2. Choose what to backup (database, files, or both).
  3. Set up a backup schedule.

Step 4: Run the Backup

Initiate the backup either manually or as scheduled. You can usually store the backup on cloud services like Google Drive, Dropbox, or directly download it to your computer.

Method 2: Manually Backup Using cPanel

Step 1: Log into cPanel

Log into your hosting cPanel account.

Step 2: Backup Website Files

  1. Navigate to the File Manager.
  2. Select all files and folders of your WordPress site.
  3. Compress them into a ZIP file.
  4. Download the ZIP file to your computer.

Step 3: Backup the Database

  1. Go to Databases section in cPanel and click on phpMyAdmin.
  2. Select your WordPress database.
  3. Click on Export and then click on Go to download the .sql file.

Method 3: Using the Hosting Service’s Built-in Backup Tools

Many hosting services offer built-in backup solutions. Here’s how to use them:

  1. Log into your hosting account.
  2. Look for Backup or Backup Manager in the control panel.
  3. Follow the prompts to backup your website files and database.

Method 4: Backup via FTP

Step 1: Connect via FTP

Connect to your website via FTP using a client like FileZilla.

Step 2: Download Files

Select your website’s root directory and download all the files to your computer.

Step 3: Backup the Database

You’ll still need to manually backup the database using cPanel’s phpMyAdmin as described in Method 2, Step 3.

Best Practices for Backing Up Your WordPress Site

  1. Regular Backups: Aim to backup your site at least weekly, or more often if you update content frequently.
  2. Multiple Storage Locations: Save backups in more than one location.
  3. Test Restores: Periodically test restoring from a backup to ensure the files are intact.


Whether you choose to use a WordPress backup plugin, manually backup via cPanel, take advantage of your hosting service’s built-in tools, or use FTP, regular backups are essential for the health and safety of your WordPress site. Make it a part of your regular maintenance to avoid future headaches.

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