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What's a Knowledge Base and Why Do You Need One?

All you need to know about why your business needs a self-service knowledge base and how to create one that improves your ROI.

 Min read
September 7, 2021

When you kickstart your customer support, part of the process is building out an internal knowledge base for your team. This system is for agents to reference the company information and engage customers with accuracy.

Knowledge bases serve more than just your agents. This system can also service your customers — giving them full access to company culture, operations, support, and more.

A knowledge base creates a 100% customized search engine for your business. It houses uber-detailed and straight-forward content about your company’s frequently asked questions, product details, how-to’s, and policies.

There's immense value in creating a self-service knowledge base where all your customers do is search, click, and find the answers they need instantly. Imagine — less customer support tickets, more traffic, more satisfied customers, and more sales.

If your goals are to provide better customer service while increasing conversions, then creating a self-service knowledge base for your customers is a must.

4 Big Benefits of Creating a Knowledge Base

A well-developed knowledge base supports every phase of the customer journey and standardizes your customer support team. The benefits in investing in a knowledge base no doubt have a considerable ROI.

Customers Prefer It

According to Customer Thermometer, 73% of consumers prefer self-service support. In other words, people will do anything to avoid calling you or sending in a ticket. Customers want to figure it out first. They want to feel independent.

Cuts Down Support Tickets and Phone Calls

A self-service knowledge base allows customers to search for an answer through frequently asked questions, which can reduce phone calls and clear your ticket queue. Plus, you'll get to connect with the customers who need legit help, rather than those who need basic questions answered.

Related: LEVO Case Study: What Happens When You Ditch Phone-Based Customer Service

Creates SEO-Indexed Content

Building out a knowledge base means you'll create content that's indexed by search engines when people search for relevant questions. Knowledge base articles will populate, and the answers will drive traffic to your website.

Unifies Customer Support Agents

A knowledge base helps develop a standard set of responses for agents, which improves response time and consistency. Whether your team is outsourced or in-house, the internal knowledge base will provide a foundation.

Related: 5 Ways to Create a Consistent Customer Experience

What Makes a Great Self-Service Knowledge Base


Simple design and function is the core of any great knowledge base. The platform has a lean design to make navigation intuitive and easy. With a quick search and a click, users are able to populate the information they need at their fingertips.


A knowledge base is not a FAQ page with short questions and answers compressed into one page.

A knowledge base is much deeper, as it transforms FAQs into thorough long-form articles or videos.

Though it’s like creating a blog, the content is much more cut-and-dry. Like a dictionary, it breaks down the jargon into layman terms so every piece of information is clear. Unlike a blog, knowledge base content is not thought-provoking or entertaining. The only purpose is to provide unambiguous information and support.


A knowledge-base auto-populates popular content proven to provide help. Rather than using clicks, shares, or comments, it uses hard-facts in surveys or bounce rates to determine which content is the most relevant to the user.

Self-Service Knowledge Bases to Emulate

We love to geek out on these crazy-cool and inspirational knowledge bases:


Vssl incorporates clean-design with popular content at the forefront of the page. We love how they integrate videos to make the information more engaging and easy to follow.



Not only is Asana's content accessible and engaging with multimedia imagery (the videos are amazing), we love how the end of articles directs us to a call to action to read related content.



Dropbox incorporates featured articles that follow the path of the customer journey. Not only do customers get tons of support, but the content engages them to buy.


How Do You Build a Knowledge Base?

Building out your knowledge base won’t be hard. However, it does take time to create all the content.

The content needs to be thorough and detailed, so don’t be afraid to take the extra time to write and edit.  Set realistic publish dates for yourself and pace yourself.

1.Create a Three-Tier Outline For Your Content

Tier 1: The Categories Your Customers Care Most About

Organize your content into the categories your customers will get the most support from. For example, if your company sold sound systems, your categories could look like:

  • Getting Started
  • Advice & Troubleshooting
  • Order and Support
  • Using the Product

Remember, less is more. Work on creating five or fewer categories to keep the organization simple and easy-to-use for your customers.

Tier 2: Determine the Sub-Categories

Within each main category, you will have subcategories of articles that fall within their domain. Continuing with our sound system example:

  • Getting Started
  • Set up
  • Personalization
  • Advice & Troubleshooting
  • Surround Sound
  • Streaming Music
  • Order and Support
  • Return Policy
  • Warranty
  • Using the Product
  • Changing Settings
  • Synching Devices

You may need to update this list again after you complete tier number three.

Tier 3: Create a List of The Articles You’ll Need

In a spreadsheet, organize a list of all the articles to fill your knowledge base. Include any relevant images, videos, and related article links. Determine which articles you need for internal purposes only and highlight those so you know to mark them “private.”  This prevents them from being published on the public-facing knowledge base.

2. Set Up Your Knowledge Base Platform

Determine where the knowledge base will live on your website.  For most, it’s a navigation link called “Support” or “Help.” Design the platform to match your web branding and to match the hierarchy to your outline.

3. Write, Edit, and Publish

You can write the articles directly in the knowledge base or copy-paste from a Google doc. Make sure all your articles are customer-focused, using “you” instead of “we.” Send your articles to be professionally edited and proofread before hitting the publish button. Once you’re live, you can integrate them into the knowledge base with tags.  

Once your knowledge base is live, don’t forget to keep it updated with relevant content. Your consumers need the freshest and most relevant information to receive exceptional post-sales service.

Knowledge is Power

A self-service knowledge base is invaluable to your company. You give customers the information they need, when they want it, without human interaction.

Fewer tickets mean less time answering basic questions, and more time handling important issues. Though a knowledge base will take time and effort to create, the ROI is well worth the development. In the end, a knowledge-base is a win-win for everybody.

Ready to kickstart your company's knowledge base? Schedule a consultation! Let us show you how to build out a killer platform that will provide long-lasting post-sale service to your customers.

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