5 Ways to Improve Your Knowledge Base

By Deon Nicholas

These days, people want to help themselves when it comes to solving support issues. 

Don’t believe us? Zendesk reports that nearly 48% of your customers are seeking some kind of self-serve option whenever they need help from your company. 

Self-serve options usually come in the form of a web widget that can help provide automatic answers or as a robust knowledge base with information regarding every little thing a customer could have questions about. 

A good knowledge base is a self-serve customer service library that contains any and all information about a product, service, or topic. Customers should be able to retrieve and appropriate data or information for their query without a hiccup.

You want a robust knowledge base that is optimized for use and actually presents the information your customers are seeking in a clear, concise, and nicely formatted way. 

This means taking the customer experience you offer into consideration when evaluating what needs to be improved and where you can start to make a difference. 

The importance of a good knowledge base can’t be overstated, so to give you some insight into what you can do to improve the information you’re offering customers, here are 5 ways to improve your customer knowledge base and overall improve your customer experience in the process. 

Use Your Support Teams’ Voice 

How readable are your knowledge base articles? 

Are they clear and easy to digest? 

When it comes to creating great knowledge base articles that customers can retain info from, you want to make sure your team is writing in a clear voice and tone that actually speaks to your customers’ voice and tone. Our recommendation is that you have actual customer service representatives write your knowledge base articles. 

Since your reps are the ones relaying the information within your knowledge articles, it would make sense to have them lead the charge for creating articles full of information they can speak on. 

You’ll want to speak with subject matter experts whenever possible but leaving the writing to the reps would make for great articles that tell someone information the way an agent would likely tell them. Plus it’ll help agents build a better understanding of everything regarding your product or service. 

Put Ticket Tagging to Good Use 

Like most contact centers, you likely have delegated ticket tagging to be part of an agent’s day. Or if the volume of incoming tickets is super high, you might even have an agent or two whose sole job is to label tickets. 

What if we said there are a few ways to leverage that information to better suit your knowledge base needs? 

With the help of AI for customer support you can automate that task and free up agents to get to more complex work such as answering tickets that can’t be deflected with a simple article. 

The great thing about customer support requests is that you can learn a lot about what your customers are looking for. Labeling tickets gives you and your teams a better understanding of what is missing from your knowledge base articles and can give you ideas for what needs to be written. 

Your ticket tagging can fill the gaps of what information your knowledge base articles are missing and what other articles you could write. The majority of incoming customer support queries are usually about information that can’t be found on your site or about details customers couldn’t find in an article so you have a great basis for more knowledge base info. 

Implement Writing Hacks

We know, not everyone is a professional writer. And if you’re going to follow our first tip of using your agents to write the knowledge articles that are shown to customers, you’ll want some guidelines. 

Here are a few writing tips you can have your writer-agents keep in mind in order to create consistent articles that serve your customers well. (You might still want to have your editor check in before publishing…) 

Make Titles Clear

Your customers should be able to clearly find whatever knowledge article they’re searching for. Every question someone could ask about your product or service should be answered within your knowledge base and titled with a clear title that tells you exactly what information is about to be given. 

Write Like You Speak

Writing can be difficult for some people because of how formal they think it needs to be. You should encourage writers to write how they speak since it’s the easiest tone to read and usually reads better. 

Format For Readability and Search

You want to optimize your knowledge base as best you can by writing them in a way that makes them searchable and easy for reading. When we say searchable we mean using direct wording a customer would in your answers or questions since that’s what is being searched. 

Tier Your Content 

You want to make use of headlines, subheadlines, bullets, and spacing in order to increase readability for your knowledge articles. Don’t be afraid to hit “enter” on your keyboard and create a new headline within your articles. Your customers will thank you. 

Include Visuals

The most helpful knowledge base articles are the ones that are easily skimmable and searchable and are broken up with images that help customers visualize how to solve their problems. You’ll want to encourage writers to use product or UI screenshots to help them better understand.

Reference Other Relevant Articles

Don’t be afraid to reference other articles or link to other places on your site that would provide the information someone is looking for. You’ll actually get rid of a lot of headaches by maintaining a flow of links within your knowledge base. 

Ask for Feedback

You know when you request support and then after the ordeal are sent a follow-up email asking you to rate the interaction along with a request for any other feedback? 

Believe it or not but customers actually give feedback! 

The best feedback you could be searching for when building out a powerful knowledge base is asking if the article provided met the customer needs. When you have information on whether an article is actually serving a customer you can add to it or even create other articles that branch off from one. 

Get An AI Assistant

If you’re just starting to build out a knowledge base you’ll want to write articles for everything possible. But what do you do after they’ve been created and are just there now? 

The next steps in leveraging your knowledge base to their fullest extent is to implement customer support AI which can help deflect and automate responses to incoming customer support requests as well as help agents reduce their ticket handling time by helping them respond to tickets faster and more accurately. 

With the help of AI for customer support you’ll help increase knowledge base article usage and ultimately increase customer satisfaction in the long run. 

Interested in learning more? Let’s chat and discover how Forethought can change your CX game.

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