Complete Step By Step Guide On How To Backup Your WordPress Website Files and Database

How To Backup Your WordPress Site and Database (Complete Guide)

Feb 11, 2018 | WP Backups

How do I backup my WordPress Website Database? This is a question that has featured on nearly every WordPress forum I have participated. Backing up WordPress is important as it will help you restore your site to X time incase something happened. Think of a scenario where you need to fix a hacked WordPress website. Without a backup, even WordPress website repair services might not be able to help get your database back. In this guide, I will show you how to backup a wordpress website both manually and also using the best WordPress website backup plugins available in the market.

Now can we get started? Click here to go to various way to backup your wordpress below. Since this is a complete step by step guide, we will start with the basics (Whys, When) for the sake of those new to WordPress or those who are still learning wordpress.

What Is a WordPress Website Backup? – A site backup is simply a copy of your WordPress website that you create and keep it online or download  to your local machine. You can actually use plugins to backup WordPress website to Dropbox.

Why Should I Backup My WordPress Website?

Despite the fact that managing WordPress websites has become easier, critical issues that may spell doom for your website still occur. Keeping a copy of your site and database is very important. Think about a scenario where you mess up something when making some changes, or when you have a slow WordPress admin backend and you can’t login, your site breaks after an update, ornwhen your site has been hacked.  These are some scenarios that reinforce the importance of backing up your WordPress database and files.

WordPress backups are not hard to create. If you can’t do it yourself or if you think it is too technical, WordPress website backup services will come in handy. For real time backups, you can pick a WordPress website maintenace plan and professionals will monitor your site and keep daily or hourly backups depending on your needs.

When Should I Back Up My WordPress Site?

You should always keep the latest copy of your website securely offline or online just to be on the safe side. For normal WordPress sites (blogs and informational sites) you should go for a daily backup. If you are running an ecommerce WordPress website, hourly backups will ensure you have the most updated copy of your database all the time.

In simple terms, you should backup your WordPress site in the same frequency that your site is updated. Now lets jump to how you should backup your WordPress site fully.

How To Up Your Sites (Manually and Using Plugins)

Now that you have decided to learn how to set up backups for your website, there are two primary ways this can be done. Using plugins or doing it manually. We recommend using plugins to backup your entire WordPress site in a few clicks.

Backing Up WordPress Sites Using Plugins

If you were searching for answers to ‘how do I backup my wordpress database easily’, this is the best option for you. Click here for a whole list of the best free and paid WordPress backup plugins. Be sure to click on that link as we have covered the details of each plugin in length.

Remember that choosing the right WordPress backup plugin is crucial to maintaining quality backups. In a guide on how to maintain a WordPress website on your own, expert recommend choosing  a plugin that can perform automated WordPress backups. Here are some of the best plugins that will help you create WordPress backups to Dropbox or any other online storage and also help Yyou when moving a WordPress website from one host to another.

BackupBuddy By ithemes and Duplicator are some of the best premium plugins that  help you schedule your backups, store the backups on your server, or even on dropbox.  Since the procedure to backup WordPress is plugin dependent, use the guides below to learn how you can backup your entire WordPress website using the best WordPress plugins in just a single click. Whether you are looking for one-time, scheduled, or automated backups, these guides will be fundamental.

For comprehensive guides on how to use each of the above blugin. Click on the links below to learn how you can configure your premium backup plugins:

  1. – How To Backup WordPress Using BackupBuddy Plugin
  2. – How To Backup WordPress Site Using Duplucator Plugin

Once you follow either of the above guides, you will be good to go. This is your first step In securing WordPress installations. Use the guide below to learn how you can do manual backup of your wordpress website or blog.

Backing Up WordPress Sites Manually

This is a great option website owners who have the technical skills . Even if you are not a technical person, I recommend that you learn how to perform manual Worpdress backups. They come in handy when you are locked from your WordPress admin panel or when your host has denied access to the site. (It happens a lot of time more so when dealing with small time hosting companies). Click here for a list of the best recommended WordPress hosting services.

Backups Files Using FTP Client and PhpMyAdmin

Most hosting services like Bluehost, Dreamhost, and Hostgator among other providers will provide access to your website files using Cpanel.  Click to learn how to use WordPress in CPanel. We will start by showing you how to download your files.

To download your files, you will need to download an FTP client and install it in your computer. Click here to download FileZilla.  Follow the instruction to download the files. The images below will guide you in downloading the website files to your computer:

How To Use The FTP Client

You have to connect the FTP client you have downloaded above with your online server to be able to backup your Website files manually. Configure the client as show below:

To run the FileZilla client, run the installation, go to File – Site Manager – New Site and make the following configurations:

Host – This is the url of your website or the IP address of the Server hosting your WordPress Files.

Servertype: Select ‘FTP – File Transfer Protocol’

Logontype – Normal

User – This is the username you use to login to your Cpanel or WordPress server

Password – Enter your password

Finally, click on the OK button to save the changes and then the Connect button to access your files. Congratulations, now you are set to download your wordpress files like shown in the image below.

backing up wordpress files to your local computer

On the left side, select the folder where you want to backup your WordPress site files to.

From the Right side, select all the wordpress files you want to backup, use your computer mouse and press the right click button, then select Download.

That’s it. Your file will be downloaded to the destination folder you selected on the left.

Now we will backup the wordpress database using PhpMyAdmin.

Login to your cpanel account, click on PhpMyAdmin icon and proceed as explained in the guide below.

Read this guide: guide on PhpMyAdmin Backup.

Backup The Entire WordPress Website Cpanel

Depending on the hosting service you are using, go to the Cpanel. Most of them can be accessed by visiting: or

Go to the backups section, click the Backup icon, under full backups, click on the click Generate/ Download a Full Website Backup.

Follow the guidelines and you will be notified when the backup is ready. You will be able to download a tar.gz file from your website home folder. From them you can use the FTP method shown above to download your full wordpress site backup.


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