The Importance of Backing Up Your Website

Posted on November 12th, 2015

Small business websites often represent countless hours and thousands of dollars, if not tens of thousands of dollars, of design and development work. Once websites are launched, routine tasks often fall on SMB managers and owners. While you may enjoy updating the home page with a fresh ad campaign or publishing the occasion blog post, when was the last time you backed up your website?

This is a frequently neglected area. Sure, you know how important it is to back up files on your computer, server, and network as a whole, but you may not realize just how much irreplaceable data is stored on your website.

For example, your website may contain:

.   Marketing content — This can include everything from the website design itself, headers, copy, product descriptions, and calls to action to photos and videos, articles and blog posts, white papers, newsletters, and other digital sales materials.

.   Customer and sales data — If you sell products online, not only are your marketing materials at stake, any customer and sales data along with transaction logs could be lost for good should your website crash.

.   Digital products — Similarly, if you sell digital products, like eBooks, courseware, software, audio files, or graphics, not having a current backup of your website could prove to be disastrous.

And, bad things CAN happen…

From power surges and outages to hardware failures, operator error, and hackers, the list of perils to data of any kind is long. Though your website may not be hosted in your office on a physical server, it’s hosted somewhere. What happens if the server your data is on is damaged in a fire or flood? What if the cheap host you selected goes out of business?

Physical threats aside, websites are frequently hacked and defaced. Hackers often delete data or infect websites with malicious code. It’s often faster, easier, and cheaper to restore the website from a backup than fix the code.

In addition, well-intentioned employees can inadvertently delete or overwrite important information on your website. Disgruntled employees and former employees may cause harm, too.

If you have a website backup, you can recover from any of these losses as well as have options should you decide to change website hosts. If you don’t backup your website data, you’ll have to start over from scratch — a time-consuming and costly proposition.

Many SMB owners and managers assume that website backups are the web host’s responsibility. While some web hosts do provide website backup services, others, especially discount hosts like GoDaddy or HostGator, do not make backups of their own. They rely on you to do it.

Fortunately, once you know how important it is to make your own regular website backups, it’s not overly difficult to do once you have the right tools and a website backup strategy in place. We can help you with both. Contact us today to learn more.

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