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Create a knowledge base in seven simple steps
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Create a knowledge base in seven simple steps

A headshot of Helen Jackson
Helen Jackson
4th December, 2023
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A headshot of Helen Jackson
Helen Jackson
4th December, 2023
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What is a knowledge base?
The benefits of a knowledge base
How to create a knowledge base
What's the best knowledge base software?

What is a knowledge base - and how do you make one? Get to grips with knowledge base creation in our easy seven-step guide.

If you’re looking for an effective way to share knowledge and collaborate across teams, you need to create a knowledge base - and if you need help with that, then this is the blog for you. This is a general guide, so if you want specific guides to creating a knowledge base, we explain how to create a Confluence knowledge base and also how a Confluence knowledge base benefits your business.

What is a knowledge base?

A knowledge base is a self-serve database housing a collection of information that everyone can access easily. From employees to customers, you can create both internal and external knowledge bases to help people search for and access the information they need at that moment.

The benefits of a knowledge base

Being able to access information and documents freely, without having to ask for help, makes doing our jobs a lot easier. A knowledge base improves productivity - you can search for what you're looking for and up pops the document.

It can reduce training time, guide new employees through onboarding effortlessly, and ensure you preserve company knowledge. This keeps documentation consistent, accessible, and updated.
All these reasons are why a knowledge base is so valuable. Here's an example of a knowledge base in Confluence:
A gif showing a cursor scrolling and interacting with tabs on a Confluence knowledge base
A knowledge base created by Kolekti in Confluence

How to create a knowledge base

We've condensed knowledge base creation into seven simple steps:

1. Determine the purpose of your knowledge base

Why are you creating your knowledge base? Is it because your team lacks cohesion? Or perhaps you don't currently have a space to share knowledge and collaborate. Whatever your reason for creating a knowledge base, figure it out so you can build something that delivers value.

2. Research your knowledge base platform options

There are tons of knowledge base software available on the market, but which one suits your business needs the most is for you to decide. Our advice? Take advantage of product demos to see the tools in action, share your specific business goals and challenges, and ask plenty of questions. For more information, look at our guide to the best work collaboration tools.

3. Spend time structuring your content

Without structure, no one will be able to find anything. Separate content by sections and audience to help users find their way around. User experience is key to successful knowledge base implementation. Let's say you're onboarding new employees: create a section dedicated to common questions and challenges new starters may have. You need each section to provide value, so take time to figure out your audience, what they need to know, and how to present that in an easily digestible way.

4. Create new content and repurpose existing content

Creating content is the most time-consuming part of building a knowledge base. You can generate content ideas in seconds, but writing it all? Days, weeks or months could lie ahead of you. That's why repurposing content is a great way to get ahead quickly. You might have access to old video guides or documentation you can re-shape and edit, making content creation much faster and easier.

5. Make your content easy to find

By tagging your content with obvious (and not so obvious) page labels, you improve your readers’ experience and journey through your knowledge base. It takes 57% of workers more than 30 minutes daily to search for the information they need. By tagging your knowledge base content coherently, you can eliminate any frustration they might have when locating relevant content.

6. Increase user adoption

Research shows that 49.96% of installed software is unused by employees. You don't want to spend time creating something for teams to ignore it - that's why you need to boost user adoption. Announce your new platform, share its benefits, create demo videos to show how to use it, and ask users for feedback (and then implement all useful feedback).

7. Get into a routine of maintaining your knowledge base

You should commit to regularly updating your content. Outdated content will not serve a purpose. Consider conducting a content audit quarterly, twice or once a year; the frequency is up to you. Just make sure it's a priority and that it remains consistent. Relevant content only!

What's the best knowledge base software?

Ultimately, there's no 'one best' knowledge base software. The best fit for you depends on your business goals and needs. Find one that aligns with both, and you're onto a winner.

BUT, if you're unsure where to start your research, here are three of the biggest players out there: Confluence, Tettra and Guru. All three have their pros and cons, but in a nutshell:

  • Confluence is perfect for teams looking to make collaboration effortless. Confluence knowledge base features include real-time editing, a single source of truth of organisational information, and its powerful search engine makes it easy for users to find what they're looking for.

  • Tettra has a great feature that helps nudge internal experts to verify page content. This means it's never been easier to ensure content is updated regularly. Another helpful feature of Tettra is its page metrics — users can measure the impact of their knowledge base by analysing page views, ratings and feedback.

  • Guru’s search engine is powered by AI, showing only useful information to users. If you use Slack, Guru can transform popular Slack topics into content, helping employees find only relevant and useful content.
Written by
A headshot of Helen Jackson
Helen Jackson
Content Writer
Helen is a freelance content writer specialising in Software as a Service (SaaS). She has a BA Hons degree in English, a Chartered Institute of Marketing qualification, and over ten years of experience in content marketing.

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