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How to turn your website knowledge base to In-app training guide?

Image of Rahul V puttalath
Rahul V puttalath

 

Do you agree contents create magic? Especially something related to product service.

What is the first option that comes to your mind when you think about customer support? Is it a help desk ticket or a live chat. Which is the most prominent and repeated tool you an end-user may be used?

Most time the answer to these questions is a help page or a knowledge base. Modern users want to do things themselves, or they are keener to learn things by doing, and getting support from a third party or a customer support team member will be a second priority. Most of the time they prefer to visit a page where they will get proper answers for all their support or product related questions. Sometimes the best method that helps your end-user to find a self-service is a help page or knowledge base, this knowledge base or redirecting the user to a help page is an old school method in customer support, as it is not interactive or engaging and keeping the user to spend more time to find relevant answers for their questions.

What is a product knowledge base

Before diving deep, let us define what is a knowledge base. Knowledgebase aka, help page articles are the self-service user library that may contain the product. Service-related information or it may be related to some general topic related a product. Some help library contains product tour guides, product introduction or troubleshooting videos, common questions, and answers related to a product or service. A help page guide or knowledge base should be easily accessible to the users or defined audience when eve they require it.

 

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This is how usually a knowledge base looks like, based on the product/service the design and content may vary. Godaddy created its self-service portal in a structured manner.

The general function of a knowledge base is to provide a self-guidance or support experience to the end-users. Comparing to all other support channels, these help pages are convenient and easy to manage, at the same time it has its own disadvantages as well. There is no doubt that the knowledge base or product help page creates a lot of values for the users, but at the same time there is a concern that is this is easily accessible and satisfying every user's needs. The concept of a knowledge base looks simple but managing and maintaining the perfect system is not so easy. Normally a user approaches the help page while they are facing some kind of issues with the product or service to learn how to start using their product is always important keeping this help pages updated when it comes to SaaS, the software is subjected to change and the knowledge base also should adopt this change.

A knowledge base allows you to deliver a self-service experience and with this, it is an easy server number of users same time. When it comes to software support, the software provider may know that where the user their users are repeatedly asking for support, this may be due to the difficulty of adopting that step. According to this, the solution provider may maintain the help page. The most fascinating thing is part of building this help, very few solution providers are trying to help their users not to repeat these mistakes. A great defined onboarding in-app training guides can solve this issue.

Why it is not the best choice in user onboarding& training?

Even-though knowledge base or help pages are effective in customer support, it is no longer considered as the best solution in user onboarding and product training! Onboarding and product training are so sensitive especially in SaaS, most modern users are sensitive and consider SaaS as a place where they need to get the production values very soon. It is a fact that customer support is a slow process maybe once they user realized the values and they feel it may take some time to fix the errors, but when it comes to onboarding and training a new user it is not that easily neglect the time they are spending to get supported, the first thing they are new to the platform and they are here to learn not to solve anything. Most users not preferring rating a long 5-page blog or lecturing on the very first days of the product journey. User onboarding our product training something that creates a first impression of the product, even the very first process is overwhelming and so much self-managed process, that is not something most users prefer to.

1. Help pages are not easy to customize!

The first thing most knowledge base or help pages are universal, it is not built for a single user and it is content-rich, most of the help pages are overloaded with contents, videos, and product tours, finding the proper one is the most difficult task on it, people may search using keywords and tags to find the proper content, it is acceptable maybe during a support task, but when it comes to product training, it is hard to keep the users within the articles and finding the appropriate one, users are coming to the platform with a different attitude, so it is not easy for them to keep searching and finding correct one. As mentioned earlier, most help pages are not built account-based, it is a global one to every user, and they need to segregate the articles that solve their problem. Customizing this page to each users are time consuming and practically not possible, so when it comes to user onboarding help page guides are creating not much values comparing to other available solutions

2. It is Not interactive or engaging

 

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Help page guides are built in a way to offer a self-training or support, most help articles can satisfy the users in support related activities. These pages may be fully overloaded with contents, but in most cases help pages are not interactive, modern users preferring a far better solution that will engage them during their onboarding and training process. User onboarding and training are a combination. Onboarding should be the combination of product training, walkthrough, and support, the end-user need to get each one whenever they feel it is required to onboard the users as properly as they prefer. It is a fact that engaged users are easier to convert, one of the main disadvantages of using help page in user onboarding is the insecurity the user feels during the onboarding, and they need to use other possible channels to reach the support team to solve their in-app onboarding issues. The only possible way to make the help page interactive is by implementing a live chat over the page, even that will not solve the problem of engaging the user in between their onboarding process.

Difference between the knowledge base and in-app training guide

As discussed earlier, help pages or knowledge base pages are less interactive and complicated to use, as it requires a lot of effort from the user side, to find the appropriate content or need to get in touch with the support team to find so. Same time, in-app product training guides create a lot of value as it centralizing the whole required content in a single place where the user is progressing. Creating a centralized place for this content increases user confidence that, they have adequate training materials during their training process that creates increases brand credibility with the users. The in-app training can be a walkthrough, tool-tip guided tours, video tutorials or it can be a combination of all of these. Modern users prefer arranging all these contents in single placing and embedding a support facility within the training module as it can be more engaging and interactive to keep their product training ahead.

 

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Here is how Hubspot implemented their in-app training guides within its portal where users log in. They have combed the video tours and step by step guidance in a more interactive way

Advantages of In-app product guides over help pages


Here is few advantages of in-app training guides over website help pages

1. More Interactive with users

In-app product guides are more interactive with the end-users during their self onboarding process, as discussed earlier in-app training is self-guided tours with real-time assistance from the customer success team, as in-app guides are embedded to the page where the end-users are progressing, that will help them to utilize the guide whenever they required, imagine a user is progressing with your software and they are doing it via tool-tip tours or any walkthrough, it is easy for the user to look into the in-app guide queries related to the onboarding, or steps they have confusion. As in-app guides are present on the interface where users stay for their onboarding, it reduces the confusion where the user needs to search for proper training contents.

2. Organised and easy to access

One of the major advantage in-app training guide has is it is well organized, as most help pages or knowledge bases are present within a different subdomain, in-app guides are present within the user portal, it reduces the user's confusion where they need to search for proper contents, most users will not prefer wandering for the proper training contents, they prefer it somewhere it is accessible and easy to use. In-app guides reducing the time the user regularly needs to spend in to dive deep to find the training contents.

3. Easy to create and edit

Setting up a knowledge base or help page is not an easy task, it requires a lot of contents and need to understand where the user may face the problem and need to set it up accordingly, every user have a different approach, so it is not easy to create a generalized content, normally software providers spend a lot of time creating and fixing the contents. Sometimes they welcome invitees to edit, create the help contents. When it comes to in-app guides, they have clear visibility of what the users required, and when they required, accordingly, they can create the contents. In-app guides are setting in to address the user onboarding and initial product training so in most cases, they may only require the first layer of contents of the information.

4. Required very less orientation

In-app guides are easy to set up and it requires very less space, in most cases, in-app guides are setting up like a digital assistant where it consumes less space, but help pages or knowledge bases are built in an external section, somewhere in a subdomain and every time the user needs to redirect to the page, and the user needs orientation to art start with it, in-app guides can be like a personal assistant as it will through information to users whenever they required, but using a knowledge base is a bit different, it need patience and good understanding to find proper contents that fit the user requirements.

How to convert the website knowledge use to in -app guidance

1. Define your product training goals

Creating an in-app guide is no that difficult but the point software providers need to take care while creating in-app guide is creating an onboarding or product training goals, before digitalizing the product training within the application, they need to define the whole onboarding journey the used progress, and accordingly create the walkthrough. Product training g goals generally mean, what are all the main steps the user needs to follow once they are moving with their in-app training. Getting started with in-app guides is so easy, the very first thing in creating the product guide is making a clear vision on how the user needs to progress and categorizing the main tasks.

 

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Based on the software and the use case creating these onboarding goals may be different, so, the solution provider needs to create their goals according to their use cases. Here dashfrugal is created its goals according to the training steps their user needs to follow.

2. Create the walkthrough

The very next step post setting up the onboarding goal is creating the user walkthrough, user walkthrough is the step by step instruction the user needs to follow while they progressing. It needs to define according to every software provider's product steps. Here it can be more contextual, to make users a well understanding of the onboarding steps, the software provider needs to define the step in contextually. Along with this, we can add video tours, a video explanation of that specific step, it helps the user to learn things fast, and can complete the training process quickly and easily.

 

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We can also integrate a real-time support system, more like a live chat where the customer success team can assist the end-user to learn things by giving real-time product understanding, by contextually or through by co-browsing with the user. This helps the user to learn things whenever they have some trouble in understanding certain steps, also this enables the software provider to make the user find the values easily.

3. Implement it over your application

Implementing the in-app training guide to the software is the next step, comparing to a knowledgebase page or help page, which is hosted over a website page or subdomain require more time to go live to the users when it comes to in-app guidance it can be implemented with an API integration, which is reliable and secure.

 

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Whenever we are adding a new page to the website help page, it is not easy to reflect or it takes time to visible that to the user, but in digital in-app guidance, whenever the software provider makes any changes in their onboarding or steps, that will reflect within seconds to the users. 

Softwares like Dashfrugal enable software providers to create an easy and effective in-app walkthrough and product training which is more value-focused, which creates a great first impression within the user and that gradually improves the user retention rate. 

 

Do you use a modern digital user onboarding software? See how your customer onboarding&in-app training can be easier. Start your Dashfrugal free trial

 

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