How to improve your Knowledge Base in 3 easy ways

“If you have knowledge, let others light their candles in it.” -Margaret Fuller

If you have a knowledge base or FAQ page on your website, you need to continously add value to it. The goal of any such self-help medium is to bring instant gratification to users when they need help.

Below are 3 simple tips that would help you improve the value your knowledge base provides. Doing this will most likely improve customer satisfaction and drive down your support costs.

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1.Keep it updated. Consistently.

One of the biggest mistakes you want to avoid is to make building knowledge base a one-off activity. Typically, no product or service remains the same. Change is constant. Why should your knowledge base not reflect the change? So the answer is simple and obvious – keep it updated. Easier said than done, right?

Reply with knowledge base article.

If you get an email from a customer with a question, don’t just respond with the answer. If you don’t already have an answer in the knowledge base about it, go write a quick one right away and shoot the response to customer with knowledge base article as part of your message. You probably put a few additional minutes of effort but this way, you have saved ton of time for yourself or your colleague who might face the same question coming from another customer. And the bonus side-effect: a constantly updated knowledge base.

Review Past Responses for opportunities

Didn’t reply with a knowledge base article? Don’t sweat. It’s never too late. Go to your ticketing system and start looking for opportunities where an existing problem-solution handled could possibly be a knowledge base article. If you are using HappyFox ticketing system, we recommend using a tag, custom status or even a custom field that can help you mark such tickets. And at least once a week, review these tickets and turn as many responses into knowledge base articles.

These workflows should be promoted within your team. There is a long term gain not just for your team but also for your customers.

2.Search on steroids with Tags

Don’t have a self-help page without search. You are beating the whole purpose otherwise. Search is probably the #1 tool people go to when they have a question. Nobody likes to navigate across a complex index, topics or questions. Search is god-send. But search is not enough. Search that can suggest as users type in their question is the key. HappyFox provides you the interface that suggests articles as user types the search keyword or even while the user is creating a ticket. We pull this data based on the title of the article, body of the article and the most important attribute – Tags.

Write useful tags that can help people find the right article faster. For instance, if you have an article titled ‘How to uninstall’, add related terms such as remove, delete or discontinue in tags. One of the easiest ways to build a set of relevant tags for a question is by simply writing down all possible ways people would describe the problem. Brainstorming article titles would indirectly help you build the tag list. Use it.

3.Embed Videos

Writing just plain text help articles? Get creative. Embed videos as your article answers. But we also recommend you to write a brief transcript of the video. Using video is important medium to get complex messages sent across in a very easy way. Videos are as valuable for support as for marketing. So, next time you write a knowledge base article, also think about the best medium to get the message across effectively.

Conclusion

It is not that hard to make the best out of your knowledge base. Time invested on it is time saved in multiples of it. So keep your knowledge base updated, use tags effectively and consider video as integral part of your knowledge base initiatives. Your knowledge base is first line of interaction with your customers. Get it done right.

Got another tip? Share it in our comments section.

Webinar:  How to Build an Effective Knowledge Base

Shalin Jain

Founder & CEO HappyFox. My forte is in customer service, support management and running a SaaS company. Connect with me on Google+, LinkedIn or follow me on twitter.