WordPress as a platorm is open source and therefore free to install, however if you are going to care for your website properly you are going to need to pay out some money every year for backups and security.
It has to be the worst feeling in the World when your WordPress website goes down and there is nobody to help. You have a site with 500 products for sale or 500 news posts, is is really a possibility you could lose everything? YES!
Perhaps you have installed a major update without disabling a plugin, your host has gone down, or perish the thought you have been hacked. In any event you will need to restore your website.
There are some free plugins that allow you to backup your database but that is only a small part of a WordPress installation. You also have WordPress widgets, themes, plugins and very importantly uploaded images and media files.
Prevention is better than cure and here are your options for a complete WordPress backup solution.
This is my chosen solution because even as a developer it can take several hours do a full restore. £180.00 per year is a small price to pay for the service they provide. VaultPress is owned by the owners of WordPress, so this is the closest to an official backup as you will get. They take real time backups of your site so every time a change is made you know your work is safe. For a larger payment of around £25 per month they will scan your site for security issues and deal with threats.
This is a premium plugin and costs around £100 per year. It will automatically take backups of your site and send them off to a repository of your choice such as Dropbox. If there is ever the need for a restore it is easily done through the easy to use interface provided. Just to reiterate that free backups will usually just give you a backup of your database, these backups include the database and all key files in your website.
This is a premium plugin and again costs around £120 per year. It will take backups of the entire site including database, content files and uploaded images and plugins. Backups can be stored to Dropbox or sent to you by email.
Complete WordPress Hosting Solution
WPengine is the best, without a shadow of a doubt. At £360.00 per year it is a little bit more expensive than the average, however when you consider what you get for your money the extra cost soon starts to make sense.
- The cost for fairly standard shared hosting with a well advertised host in the UK, including SSL certificate, is around £160.00 per year.
- Then you have to add on the cost of a backup solution of around £180.00 and the price is rising.
- Plus with WPengine you get complete security built in, which gives great peace of mind.
- Lastly your site will run fast, very fast, so that will keep Google happy.
Basically if you want your host to take care of everyting then this is the solution for you.
Find out about doing your own WordPress backups
Want to do your own backups? See here: http://codex.wordpress.org/WordPress_Backups