How to Create Reliable WordPress Backups

Backing Up WordPress

Creating regular WordPress Backups is an essential part of maintaining your website. In this post will show you how to set up scheduled backups that will be stored in the cloud.

Manual Backups and Migration

In a previous post, we discussed WordPress migration, creating manual backups and how to migrate your website to a new host. If you prefer to do manual backups or you need to migrate your site, read our WordPress Migration post, which will show you how to install two excellent plugins that will help you backup, restore and migrate your site to a new host.

UpdraftPlus WordPress Backups Plugin
UpdraftPlus – WordPress Backups Plugin

What You Need to Get Started

In order to get started, you will only need three things. If you don’t have a WordPress website, you will need one to use the UpdraftPlus plugin, which will backup your WordPress site to Google Drive.

  1. A WordPress Website
  2. A Google Account
  3. The UpdraftPlus Plugin

Click on any image to view it full-sized, which will provide you with a better view of the settings described for that step.

“A Google account and the UpdraftPlus plugin are all free, so why aren’t you creating regular backups of your WordPress website?”

Step 1: Create a WordPress Website

If you already have a WordPress website, great you are ready to go. If not you will need to hire a designer, purchase a hosting account and install WordPress or Install WordPress Locally.

Create a WordPress Website
Create a WordPress Website

Step 2: Create a Google Account

Visit the Google Accounts Signup page to create a free account. Your new account will include Google Drive, which is where you will store backups of your site.

Why Do I need a Google Account?

Besides the fact that your backups will be stored on Google Drive, you will also have access to many other important services that Google offers for free. We have listed some of the services they offer below, and you can access all of these services and more with the account you create.

Suggested Accounts

  • Google Drive
  • Google My Business
  • Gmail
  • Google+
  • Google Play
  • Photos
  • Maps
  • Calendar
  • And Many More!

In addition to all of the excellent services listed above, your Google account will also allow you to log in to many other websites using your Google account username and password.

Create a Google Account
Create a Google Account

Step 3: Install the UpdraftPlus Plugin

Login to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Plugins > Add New, then type UpdraftPlus in the search box. Next, click the install button. After the plugin has downloaded the button text will change to “activate.” Click the button again to activate the UpdraftPlus plugin.

Install UpdraftPlus Plugin for WordPress
Install the UpdraftPlus Backup Plugin

Step 4: Configure UpdraftPlus

The final step is to configure UpdraftPlus to backup your WordPress website to Google Drive, and we have included detailed step by step instructions and screenshots below to help you configure UpdraftPlus.

Hover over the “Settings” link on the left side of your WordPress dashboard and click on the “UpdraftPlus Backups” link.

Next, select the “Settings” tab and you will see the cloud storage options as shown in the image below.


  1. Change Files Backup Schedule to Monthly
  2. Change Database Backup Schedule to Weekly
  3. Click the Google Drive Icon then continue to the next configuration step below.
Configure the UpdraftPlus Plugin
Configure UpdraftPlus Settings

Configure Google Drive Settings

At the bottom of the page click the “Save Changes” button and a popup will appear as shown in the image below. Click the link “Follow this link to authorize access to your Google Drive account (you will not be able to back up to Google Drive without it).” to allow UpdraftPlus to access your Google Drive account.


Google Drive Authentication Popup
Google Drive Authentication Popup

Allow UpdraftPlus Access to Google Drive

Click the “Allow” button as shown in the image below and sign in to your account to allow UpdraftPlus to view and manage the files in your Google Drive. This is the final step and it will allow UpdraftPlus to backup your files and database to Google Drive according to the settings you entered in UpdraftPlus.

Allow UpdraftPlus to Access Google Drive
Allow UpdraftPlus to Access Google Drive

Final Thoughts

Backing up your WordPress website regularly ensures you can always restore your site if an update breaks your site or if your site is hacked. If you purchase the premium version you can backup to other cloud storage accounts like Dropbox, so you may want to consider the other options if you prefer a different cloud storage service, need more storage space or you want to backup your files to multiple locations.

In this post, we left the default settings intact, which is to retain only two backups, but you can set the maximum number of backups to anything you want. However, if you want to create more backups you should consider how much storage space each backup uses and whether you need more backups of your website before setting the limit too high.


  1. Create a WordPress Website
  2. Read Our WordPress Migration Post
  3. Install the UpdraftPlus Backup Plugin
  4. Configure UpdraftPlus Settings
  5. Allow UpdraftPlus Access to Your Google Drive

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