Have you ever been stuck with a flat tire on your trip? Everyone would have experienced this some time. You’re stranded in the middle of nowhere. You’ve got the spare tire and jack somewhere in the car but you never have bothered to learn to do it. Then you reach out for the car manual that could just help you with this.

Thanks to the company for providing a manual that can help you get out of the struggle. This is just a regular example of a knowledge base. A customer service knowledge base combines a series of questions and answers, how-to articles, tutorials or guides that customers can use to help themselves. This also helps customers save time spending on a typical hassle of phone support and instead solve the issue themselves. All in all, a knowledge-sharing system could be a knowledge base and how you build your knowledge base will help your customers help themselves.

Why Should You Have a Knowledge Base?

If you really want your business to be successful, you will need to start building a knowledge base from day one. Why? You know one of the main reasons why a customer may stop using a product is that they find it too hard to get the right support at the right time. And to top that off, customers demand a knowledge base.

Here are a few of the endless ways you can use a knowledge base.

  • IT: From troubleshooting to training, it simplifies everything.
  • HR: Onboarding, distributing company policies, and payment schedules.
  • Legal: For contract and other approval processes, policies, and registrations.

A knowledge base helps customers find answers to solve problems on their own and a good knowledge base can scale-out good support while improving the overall customer experience.

A Gartner study projects that by 2020, the customer will manage 85% of the relationship without interacting with a human. This means building a complex process that contains multiple steps that can promote knowledge. There are a number of things to include when you are creating a knowledge base on your own.

One of the best examples when it comes to a design-wise knowledge base is Spotify. They have a neatly organized help center. Their knowledge base is composed of fully explained information (FAQs, how-to guides) backed by amazing visuals. It has an amazing autocomplete system which tries to predict possible questions that you may have.

Getting Started With Your Knowledge Base

  1. Create a Content Plan

What should you actually write about in your knowledge base? There is a lot of stuff everywhere. It’s how you plan out your content to cover everything. For a customer service knowledge base, you should collect FAQs from any department that interacts with customers and people who make the product. Content from each of them should contribute to your document.

  1. What are Topics for Your Knowledge Base

How do you decide what topics are important? Start out in bits. Keep in mind:

  • Answers to all basic questions that a stranger would want to ask.
  • Have a setup process a customer goes through when starting to use your product.
  1. Collaborate With Your Team

It will take time to create a knowledge base. When working with a group of team, there will be tasks that need to be worked on collaboratively. And to work collaboratively you need to have a workflow that is defined in stages.

  1. Knowledge Base Software

Collaboration is required, but having a centralized system that employees can access online design a knowledge base from the ground up to help customers and team is also must. You can elevate your customers to self-help, to find important company details, and help employees to find critical information in seconds.

  1. Keep it up to Date

If you are constantly updating your services or product then you need to constantly keep up with your knowledge base document. Also, have a system of analytics that will give you a report on how many people are using content, have feedback and ratings on content, and many other reviews. Look at what pages are visited frequently and why.

  1. Use Visuals to Make Your Layout Clear

Using visuals means using both graphics and keeping the page organized that doesn’t confuse the customer. Design help menus that work well for desktop PCs, mobile phones, and apps. In all cases, make sure you add a distinct “contact us” badge. And above all else, have a search bar. If your product is tangible, use pictures of your products on the page, if your product is a service or program, your text boxes are your graphics.

  1. Use Customer Questions to Tweak Your Content

Customers expect an easily accessible location where they can find an answer to all burning questions. Instead of using your own internal labels for content use your customers own words to answer their issues.

  1. Don’t Sell Inside Your Knowledge Base

Your customers need help, and it’s going to be annoying if you start selling your services where they are looking for help. You can add an option to upgrade at some instances but don’t try to sell anything extra. It’s like help and not a sales pitch.

  1. Intuitive and Simple Design

Making a simple design for your knowledge base should be an important part. It is not enough to simply offer a standard knowledge base portal—the design also affects your customers’ experience with your brand. If the design is lackluster, it could make for a poor response. When designing your knowledge base, keep discoverability and simplicity top of mind.

How Do You Share Knowledge in the Workplace

The success of any company depends upon the most basic aspect – knowledge sharing. How do you do it? Knowledge sharing is worthy. It is not so recent buzzword but the idea is straightforward.

Remember to create an effortless experience for your customers by building a good knowledge base system. Setting up a successful knowledge sharing program can be overwhelming. Where do you start?