The importance of back ups can NEVER be overstated!
As more and more people are building websites for themselves. We as web developers are finding that the fundamentals of good practice as far as backups, core web developer tasks and basic common sense are not being given enough priority or, even worse, being ignored completely.
As experienced users, we know backups are important – off site backups for critical sites are even more important but, even if you perform a local back up (one that sits on the same server as your main site). You are doing better than most.
A local back up can help you get over editing issues, lost designs, pages or theme files, its simple enough to restore and if you want to move server, you can even clone that back up to a new server.
I recently started working with GridPane a great service that helps web developers and agencies scale up heir hosting and mange all sites form one central dashboard allowing you ot build the right ‘Stack’ for your customers’ needs.
“So, Andrew, how is this relevant to me, a one site owner who knows nothing about hosting and doesn’t really care about the stack, I just want my website to be safe, secure and up – ALL THE TIME!”
I get that comment or something similar, daily. GridPane allows the smaller user to manage and maintain their site, have back ups and rollbacks, security, safely update core WordPress functions and of course SSL and you OWN your server and get great support. Yes, you have to set up your server, yes, you have to maintain your site – (it’s easier than you think) and ticket support is always there to help you through the fundamentals.
The relevance of this is that most ‘Managed’ WordPress providers don’t have their own servers either – Kinsta, WP Engine, Flywheel etc, all use Google Cloud Services, Separate DNS providers and in some instances a separate Content Delivery Network provider – which helps your site be faster and more accessible to Global Users.
In truth, I have never experienced a ‘Managed’ host tell me when my site was either broken or down – so, it has always been hard for me to understand what the managed portion of their – fairly expensive offerings, actually are.
As a community member of many Facebook groups around web design, hosting and page builders, I see dramatic posts – my website is down, I have lost all my content, the latest update broke my blurbs, theme builder files and now I can’t restore them because I didn’t have a backup – or, I don’t know how to restore a backup even if I have one.
As a website owner who has built their own site, it is in my view, your responsibility to learn how to make a backup, do a restore, and frankly, to protect your website from n’er do wells. With solutions like GridPane that help you manage your site, easily and securely, you just know it makes sense.
If you are a developer who has over 10 sites that you manage with a hosting provider or many, think abut the advantages of setting up your own server, having an intuitive dashboard, built in security protocols, built in back up solutions and of course experts on hand to help you through the technical aspects and start your own managed hosting solution. If companies like WP Engine and Kinsta can build a web hosting business on the backbone of someone else – so can you!
Even if you don’t want to consider GridPane or building out your own servers – please do make sure when building your website you have at the very least – a backup and restore plan in place. And, yes, I use GridPane and I have for over a year. Pretty much all of my critical websites are hosted on my own instances of Vultr or Digital Ocean Servers and, when you have clients that turnover millions a month are mission critical and run data driven websites along with ecommerce solutions that call hundreds of thousand of DB queries a minute – you need reliable and feature rich hosting solutions. It really is that simple.