Are All Those Knowledge Base Articles Worthwhile?

If you are like many companies today, you probably have a knowledge base—that place where you store all the information that will help your clients learn to use your products and services. And if you’re like most companies, you are either sending out a million emails with all that information crammed in the body of the email, or you are sending out one or two communications with links to your knowledge base for clients to go find information when they need it. Each of those approaches is problematic:

  • The all-email-all-the-time approach floods your client’s inbox with messages, and most won’t have time to even scratch the surface of what you send. Since they already have hundreds of emails to sort through, eventually yours become background noise.
  • The one-email-with-all-the-links approach puts all the responsibility on your clients to find the information they need to effectively use your products, platform, or services. Since they don’t have unlimited time and they don’t really understand how your products or services will meet their needs yet, they probably won’t be able to find the tools and resources on their own to succeed.

Having a knowledge base isn’t necessarily bad, but you need to find the right way to help clients get maximum value from it. Here are a few best practices to limit frustration and improve client experience.

Organize It

Imagine going into the grocery store and having every product stocked on shelves based on when it came into the store. Bananas are next to juice boxes, bread is adjacent to the macaroni and cheese, frozen pizzas are scattered over five different aisles. You may try to find a couple of things on your list, but eventually, you’re going to give up and go somewhere that has an organized, methodical, and rational approach to stocked shelves. Knowledge bases are no different. Make sure your FAQs, technical support, product manuals, and how-to videos are all organized and easy to navigate at a glance.

View it from Your Customer’s Perspective

Since you know your products and services inside and out, you probably think it’s completely intuitive to find things in that knowledge base. But as a best practice, invite someone in for user testing who has no idea what you do, and watch how they navigate the articles and information. Then use that information to create an intuitive interface and structure so your customers (who are also new to your company) can find it easily.

Customize Communications

It’s important to strike a balance between the two approaches above, and the best way to do that is with customized onboarding templates that provide the exact information each client needs based on how they will use your platform or products. Resist the urge to send everything and keep communications to a minimum so you don’t overwhelm them. Then track and review how often people click and use your resources, how often they contact technical support or help to find things that are available in the knowledge base, and other metrics to tweak and optimize future communications.

Automate the Process

If that sounds like a lot of work, the GuideCX platform is here to help. We can streamline communications and help you identify exactly the right way to share your knowledge base with clients for maximum benefit. Schedule a demo to learn more today.

Harris Clarke