Best Practices in Knowledge Management: 5 areas that cry for your attention

 

Knowledge Management is the deliberate act of recognizing, validating, organizing, storing and communicating information relevant to the functioning of an organization, to key employees, to enable them preempt questions, solve problems, make decisions, change or rework strategies and processes in order to prevent obsolescence and maintain their competitive advantage.

You need to constantly review and update the knowledge management process itself to ensure relevance and competitiveness. Best practices from these 5 areas; knowledge collection, incorporation, mapping, resource cultivation and harnessing tech, will help you rethink your processes in a new light.

Look In and Look Out

Creating and adding value by utilizing knowhow, experience, judgment, and learning is a finite process with infinite mines.

These wells and mines of knowledge may exist within an organization, and just as likely, outside, and may need to be ushered in. Learning from competition may come to your mind as an often used quip and just as important may be to learn from any individual, company or industry known for a best practice. If it works for them it most likely will for you as well. So you need to look inwards and outside your company to obtain complete and competitive knowledge.

Your firm cannot rely too long on current knowledge and must strategize to actively acquire knowledge of new markets, technologies, recipes, consumer insight, value addition, and at times even the way the legal and regulatory environment is shaping up in the geographies you operate in.

The potential to learn from many sources, if built into the knowledge management system, will enable you to deliver superior value with your competitive advantage becoming accretive over time.

When you have decided to look outward, make sure the flow of knowledge between the two organizations is smooth and supported by established measures for its implementation. The learning process is smoother if the knowledge resides in a sister concern or joint venture.

Establishing an agreement with a non-compete or joint research clause and agreeing with clear guidelines on which part of the knowledge belongs to which organization and how it can be utilized or patented may be an option you can explore. Poaching expertise may be the last option, including the option of outright purchase of the knowledge, but this could to be an expensive process most of the time.

Digest well Avoid Constipation

It’s easy to constipate on knowledge when you acquire or store it for its own sake. You will suddenly find yourself overwhelmed with the quantity and diffusion of information leading to decision paralysis. For your knowledge management strategy to be successful, the sequence from knowledge creation to dissemination has to marry re-evaluation, re-adjustment, and re-thinking of the processes to entune with the new learning. This leads to optimal processes and working conditions.

The continuous sharpening of knives, in terms of knowledge, skills, technology and in some cases behavior, ultimately gives you the winning edge that differentiates the value offered to your customers versus your competitor.

You need to know what to imbibe. Understanding your company’s value proposition becomes critical here in terms of what exactly contributes to improved organizational outcomes and results. It’s a step too easy to fall into the trap of ascribing more value to apparently valuable information but which is not critical to the fulfillment of your promise to the consumer.

Healthy digestion should naturally lead to healthy assimilation as well. Here you need to chew over the importance of linking all knowledge processes within your organization. Different parts of your value chain generate and use different bits of knowledge. The integration of all into one drives organizational purpose. The process that stores information in a silo will tend to become your weakest link in future.

Map to Understand

Prepare your knowledge map using mapping tools. Mindmap works like magic. Differentiate the focus areas from the lacking areas.

Focus area: To ensure your knowledge management processes are integrated with your business processes, you need to specify the focus areas, which will be your value proposition and business critical knowledge. Map and use this knowledge to realize strategic objectives, e.g., improving manufacturing efficiency, reducing service costs or reducing downtimes.

Organizational priorities need to be linked with knowledge priorities. Specific processes need to be given measurable outcomes e.g. savings. This value chain has to promote full organization’s participation in key management periodically reviewing knowledge needed, available, gap and allocate resources to fill this gap.

Lacking areas: We are in the knowledge era and the future belongs to companies with knowledge management ingrained in their DNA. In order to develop strategies to exploit the knowledge in products, processes, services, practices, and norms, you need to find gaps and plug them by accessing, developing or buying this lacking knowledge. You need to harness technology and use measurable models and analytics to constantly measure this gap or lack. Keeping an eye on the width of this gap will surely be akin to keeping your finger on the pulse of the organization.

Convert People to Resources

If you are in the same industry, chances are, you are competing with the same resources.

How effectively you are utilizing these resources is a function of your embedded processes and standard work practices, management practices, stage of evolution of the organization, complexities within the organizational culture, environment and social fabric, skills and know how that exists that the firm is able to pay for and retain and finally pools of cumulative experience.

Every one of these factors is directly affected by knowledge embedding over time and like the proverbial elephant can be valuable resources or degenerate into redundancy and liability.

If your business is knowledge intensive, you need to first locate stakeholders of highly valued activities. The next step is to establish resources and recipients of critical knowledge and identify the assets needed in each step of the process in order to create an inventory of explicit and tacit knowledge used and needed.

In a resource based organization, the knowledge within becomes the center of its competitiveness. This is particularly true in certain technology intensive and new generation organizations.

The cultivation, development, and retention of these resources hence become its primary need.

How valuable are your employees to you?

Imagine for a minute half of them working for your key competitor.

How much do you lose?

Learning in this context becomes a more complex issue and has a value attached to it and every employee with tacit knowledge will have a quantifiable replacement value.

Alliances and collaborations with external partners enable firms to learn from each other and thus accelerate the movement of knowledge.

Cultivating resources necessitates an ambient organizational culture, objective setting and reward system.

When knowledge capture and sharing are enumerated in the objectives, resistance is reduced. Motivation can be built around incentives for sharing. Recognition as an expert within the organization and open recognition through awards and promotions go a long way.

More and more in our networked society, with every bit of new knowledge making a difference to millions of lives instantaneously, e.g., through publications, blogs, lectures at conferences, or sharing in knowledge communities, an employee’s recognition externally is gaining in importance.

Tech the Trouble

Technology has vast applications in knowledge management and can be adapted to capture, store and use knowledge. While software tends to be complicated, the tools themselves need to be designed such that the user is prompted to the right place.

Different groups of workers, focused at different types of activities, at different locations in the company have different requirements and levels of knowledge use and generation. All IT systems need to be integrated into the knowledge management system to ensure communication and crosstalk to be seamless and connecting processes throughout the organization.

Every activity involves learning and boredom, the more repetitive the activity the more the latter. Tasks that have been specialized to the extent where thought and learning are not required, have been quickly replaced by technology.

We are today in the robotic age where the focus is entirely on maximizing the scope of tasks that can be mechanized. A crucial element that will be missing in future generations will, therefore, be the little nuggets of learning that smoothen the wheels of operation on a daily basis.

Can you be replaced by a robot?

The answer to this question leads you to think of the judgement and refinement your experience brings into decision making that the robot will not be able to.

Have you asked yourself as to what extent technology should be an enabler in your firm and where should you draw the line?

On a final note,

Vastly different are the knowledge management issues in small vs big organizations and in the manufacturing/product vs the service industry. You first need to know what business critical knowledge is and isolate methods for its capture.

Start by looking within your organization, but like an antivirus update, you periodically need to download or import to fill your knowledge gaps that will keep on arising. Make sure this gap doesn’t go too wide especially if you are in the newer economy. Learning and implementation have to be done by the staff and competency management here are essential.

By recruiting the right hands, you can delay redundancies.

New knowledge will be wasted if not immediately incorporated in renewing your systems, refurbishing your products or changing your processes and employee commitment tends to get reduced subsequently if they think its just routine knowledge capture.

Invest in your people through training to maintain productivity, or soon you will find they can all be replaced by robots. Strong leadership commitment is the backbone of any successful knowledge management system or process.

As Peter F Drucker, the American management guru once said, “The single greatest challenge facing managers in the developed countries of the word is to raise the productivity of knowledge and service workers” which brings to focus the importance of the manner in which knowledge is handled within an organization.

Knowledge Bases are essential for any organization focussed on improving their Knowledge Management. Do check out our own Helpie WordPress Knowledge Base Plugin to take your organization’s Knowledge Management to the next level.


4 Knowledge Management Models That Can Supercharge Your Organisation

 

Each organization has its own unique knowledge management strategy (KM) and modeling.

You would agree that it really helps to understand if the strategy addresses the strategic needs of the organization.

Knowledge itself is the ability to apply the tacit and explicit information in problem-solving, decision making or effecting an improvement within the core values of an organization.

A KM model is a structured way to look at the process of KM used by an organization in order to investigate its properties and tailoring it to the organization’s specific needs. All models basically have four parts:

  1. Information capture
  2. Storage
  3. Customization
  4. and use

Some models like the Nonaka Model elaborates more on the “Use” and “creation” parts while the Zack Model concentrates more on the customization part or the refinement of the information.

At first, the information captured needs to be processed to distill only the business critical knowledge, also called strategic knowledge, which has to be verified and validated by key stakeholders.

This information stored in usable formats has become Knowledge. This knowledge has to be distributed to the relevant target group and enables the user to solve problems for example. This process of converting information into knowledge that can be used is called the Knowledge Management Cycle.

 

The 4 comprehensive and widely used KM models are elaborated here:

 

Nonaka and Takeuchi Model

Here the focus is on knowledge creation. In order for innovation to take place, the bar has to be raised, first, in the sphere of knowledge creation. The model defines and elaborates on the 2 types of knowledge, the explicit knowledge which is well documented and tacit knowledge which is a result of years of experience and hence is likely to unconsciously reside at the back of the mind of the expert using this knowledge.

Since knowledge creation is a continuous process and occurs in both a planned and accidental way across the organization, this model considers the capture of this knowledge as the key to continuous improvement.

Nonaka also specifies the 4 methods of knowledge conversion:

  1. Socialization (tacit to tacit)
  2. Externalization (tacit to explicit)
  3. Combination (explicit to explicit) and
  4. Internalization (explicit to tacit)

 

Explicit knowledge can be processed by either a human or computer whereas tacit information can only be processed by the person who holds it. Let’s now look at each of the methods of knowledge conversion.

Socialization: This is where knowledge sharing takes place through presentations, demonstrations, one-on-ones etc. It can be between two individuals over coffee or a formal open-up session. It may also take the form of a mentorship program where the objective itself is the systematic download of tacit information onto a successor.

Externalization: Here knowledge is stored to disseminate in a planned manner e.g. through publication, presentations in seminars and conferences etc. Academic institutions and research and development centers have this as their priority as they are viewed as the source of information dissemination.

Internalization: Simply put this is training with a purpose. If you need to fix your water heater, you first “internalize” or learn the “explicit” knowledge which the user manual may contain in order to then use this knowledge to troubleshoot. Similarly, an organization may need experts to pore over certain documented information to troubleshoot a manufacturing line to reduce rejections or streams of financial data to plug profitability leaks.

Combination: Here knowledge enhancement and adaptation takes place. The tacit information is combined with explicit information to create knowledge adapted or enhanced to tackle a specific problem or about a particular project.

 

ZACK Knowledge Management Model

The model put forward by Meyer and Zack defines the various stages of a KM cycle emphasizing the “refinery”. The stages of information collection to conversion into usable knowledge have been enumerated as; acquisition, refinement, storage and retrieval, distribution and presentation or use.

Each of these stages is networked using pure logic in order to facilitate analysis of the knowledge repository and clear mapping of each of the stages of the KM cycle. Let’s look at these stages a little more closely:

 

Acquisition of Data or Information

At the information, stage focus is given to the quality and accuracy of the information. This in the context of where our materials come from and what specifications they carry can range from, scope, breadth, depth, credibility, accuracy, timeliness, relevance, cost, exclusivity etc.

Imagine buying wheat flour for making biscuits in your factory.

You have many vendors of wheat flour and each has given you a different specification and price for the same flour and delivery schedule.

It would be impossible to compare and come to a purchase decision even if quality and delivery schedules are the same. In this case, the data capture needs to ensure the information is standardized and only comparable data which is important for biscuit manufacturing is captured in a standard format.

In acquisition, the guiding principle is “Garbage In Garbage Out” which means people have to be trained to get first time right, whatever information they put into the system to get analyzable data downstream.

Refinement

After acquiring information, it has to be stored, but all information cannot be stored. First, the information has to be converted to knowledge packets. This helps storage and retrieval to become easy in the future. This process of conversion of information to knowledge packets is called refinement.

There can be many types of refinement applied to the information depending on the requirements of the organization like:

Physical, e.g., migrating from one medium or location or software to another.

Logical, e.g., restructuring the information into preset formats, indexing and integrating this information into a larger group of information to be used later.

Cleaning, e.g., getting rid of redundant information or duplication or even removing unnecessary parts of the entire information package.

Standardization, e.g., tailoring all information into predefined templates in order to make comparisons easier and improving the usability of the information.

Storage and Retrieval

The repository of information nowadays tends to be in the form of customized software, but traditional businesses still store files, folders and other printed and written information.

This information will be used downstream during the stages of product creation, e.g., information required for recipe and label creation, packaging, and claim elements, etc.

Distribution

Here the various recipients of the information are defined, and the mode in which they may receive this information is also defined, e.g., mails, prints, dossiers, etc. The timing and frequency at which they are to receive this information and even form or language may need to be specified.

Presentation

This is the final step where the hitherto fore considered “information”, is going to take the shape of “knowledge”.

Presentation of the information, depending on the complexities of the organization, has to consider the recipient. Each recipient will have particular needs for different parts of the information whole. Tailoring and packaging the information for each group of recipients increases productivity.

Feedback is generated from the final users of this knowledge in order to continuously improve the repository and eliminate redundant information or add new elements to the information capture.

The Meyer and Zack model is considered one of the best models having an end-to-end scope and covering the entire organization giving a complete picture of all the elements of a robust KM model.

 

BUKOWITZ and WILLIAMS Model

( image here )

 

This model is basically a management framework that outlines “how organizations generate, maintain and expand a strategically correct stock of knowledge to create value”. All types of knowledge are recognized by this framework and may include information databases, information technologies, communication infrastructure, organizational intelligence, skills, and know-how latent at certain function etc.

The schematic diagram above shows the “Get”, “Use”, “Learn” and “Contribute” stages. These stages are linked to the strategic need of the organization.

Get Stage: Specific information required to make decisions, solve problems, or required to create new products or services, is sought or procured.

Use Stage: Here this information is combined in various ways by individuals or groups in order to make the information usable, e.g. for innovation or renovation.

Learn Stage: Whenever knowledge is used in a business environment, regardless of success or failure of the venture, new knowledge is generated. In order that the same mistakes are not repeated and to use the new knowledge to improve competitive advantage, integration of this new knowledge back into the system is fostered.

Contribute stage: Here the employee contributions are sought in order to continually update database and repositories. This is one of the ways of documenting tacit knowledge.

 

WIIG Model

 

Karl Wiig, proposed his KM model in 1993 with the claim that knowledge will be useful and valuable only if it is organized and synchronized. According to Wiig, the ultimate purpose of KM is “to make the organization intelligent-acting by facilitating the creation, accumulation, deployment, and use of quality knowledge.” Through his KM cycle, WIIG attempts to show how knowledge is built and used by individuals and organizations.

The 4 stages of WIIG’s model are:

 

Building knowledge:  from external and internal knowledge sources covering both tacit and explicit knowledge.

Holding knowledge: Storing the information in specific and easily retrievable physical formats and in people through training.

Pooling knowledge: Using appropriate KM systems to ensure cross-talk between pools or groups of experts.

Applying knowledge: Here the use of knowledge is in changing or improving the work processes so that new knowledge is automatically embedded.

 

Some of the defining characteristics of the Wiig model are

Completeness: Whether tacit or explicit there are several sources of knowledge, each with incomplete information. When building knowledge for the organization the completeness of this knowledge is an important step to utilization.

Connectedness: To understand the big picture and realize how knowledge may be used it is important that different parcels of knowledge are interconnected. This helps pull out related information quickly and assimilate in decision making.

Congruency: This is the alignment between facts and figures, concepts and content to the organization’s objectives and the utility will be directly proportional to how the knowledge becomes a crutch for problem-solving.

Purpose and Perspective: Capturing knowledge with a particular perspective is to look at the elements that may be required in future for a particular purpose. This would enable us to glean information from a particular point of view and increase relevancy to the user.

 

Conclusion

Modelling in KM is the science of pictorially depicting the KM framework that shows the integration and inter-relationships between various elements in a lucid manner. Models broadly try to capture all the different processes within an organization, the unique knowledge requirements of each of them and facilitate a system of acquiring and storing this knowledge to enable continuous learning and improvement in the functioning of the organization. A knowledge management framework is one which captures all the relevant aspects of KM with appropriate detail. As organizational needs vary, each model must choose its key focus areas and areas of redundancies so as not to waste time and resources in capturing irrelevant data.


Create a Knowledge Base for your WordPress website with Helpie  [Step By Step Tutorial]

Do you have a website for your company/organisation?

Do you have a Woocommerce store?

Do you sell any products or services online?

Then, you need a Knowledge Base / Documentation Area for your website.

Here’s why,

There are a number of topics like Privacy Policy, Terms and Conditions that you just cannot skip from your website. Then, you have other information like Shipping Policy if you are shipping products, return policy and the list goes on.

Having a section of website specifically dedicated to these documentation of product/service information is crucial to

  1.  Protect yourself from legal/communication problems about your product/service
  2. Provide a better customer service to your customers and potential customers alike. Potential customers will look at the product documentation as a validation of your brand as a whole

Here’s what a recent survey revealed relating to this:

  1. 66% of the people look for warranty information before purchasing
  2. Around 50% look for shipping information from the documentation
  3. 47% look for payment information
  4. 64% people feel uncomfortable without a clear return policy
  5. 6/10 people feel concerned about credit card safety. They would not buy from you if you don’t have clear documentation regarding that ( in addition to SSL )
  6. 81% people do online research about your product and your categories. This is an excellent opportunity for your documentation to shine through. Write excellent tutorials that users would find via Google and increase your chance of getting noticed for multiple keywords related to your domain.

Now as promised, let me walk you through the step-by-step of creating your own Knowledge Base/Documentation area for your WordPress website.

Assuming you already have your own WordPress website, let me help you get started with Helpie.

Step 1:

Have a look at what Helpie can do for you and then you can purchase Helpie here. Before that you might be asked to create an account with Codecanyon/Envato ( Codecanyon’s parent company ).

Step 2:
After you have purchased the Helpie plugin, go to your User menu bar ( at the top-right corner ) -> Downloads.

  • There you will see Helpie listed along with any other themes/plugins you have purchased.
  • Click on the download button near Helpie and in the dropdown options click “Installable WordPress files only”.
  • This will download only the Helpie plugin files you need to install the plugin.

Then you can install the plugin to your WordPress website as usual. That is,

  1. Go to yourdomain.com/wp-admin
  2. Click ‘Plugins’ -> Add New Plugin ( in the dashboard menu )
  3. Upload Plugin and select the zip file you downloaded.
  4. Go to Helpie under Plugins and click Activate

You are now ready to go!

Step 3:

Helpie requires no more setting up. You can just go ahead and add new knowledge base articles.

After you have written your first article, choose a category from the right sidebar in the same Add article page.

Then publish your article.

Step 4:

Customising your main page.

If you want your documentation to reflect your brand’s styling, then you can make use of Helpie Style settings to customise your Main Page.

Hero section:
The Hero section is your brand’s frontier within the knowledge base. Here are some ways to customize your Hero section to truly reflect your brand.

  • You can change the default title/subtitle and add your own title/subtitle.
  • You can change the background color or even add a gradient color to your background.
  • Choose from our collection of vector images to match the mood. For example, you can choose our desk image for your team’s internal documentation.

Categories Listing section:

Depending on the purpose of your knowledge base/documentation and how you intend to use it, you might want different templates for how your categories are listed in your Knowledge Base’s main page.

Helpie comes with 3 templates which you can choose from: Boxed, Boxed1, and Modern Categories Listing templates.

You can now add more articles or check out the various features of Helpie and use them as you fit.


Create a Wiki website with WordPress [ GUIDE + PLUGINS + THEMES ]

 

Are you looking for tools to help you build a modern Wiki website?

Do you want something more easy to use and powerful than the traditional wiki software?

Here’s my guide to help you create an awesome wiki website with WordPress.

Wait. Can you create a Wiki with WordPress?

Yes, you can. You can use WordPress and even get help from some WordPress plugins to create your own wiki website.

Who needs a Wiki website anyway?

If you want to collaborate on content in any way, you need a Wiki. You might want to create a wiki for a game, your favorite sports team, content sharing within your organization, etc.

You could even want to create a private/personal wiki for yourself to collect and organize your learning.

So what should you look for in a Wiki software? Let me walk you through just that.

 

Must-Have Features:

 

Frontend Editing:

The ability to edit content from the frontend or the same page as the content is very important for a wiki. This is where most people who try WordPress give up because by default WordPress does not come with front-end editing.

But, with Helpie plugin installed to your WordPress website, you have the frontend editing feature that makes Wiki what it is.

 

Access Restriction:

You might want only your fellow Starwars fans to access your Starwars wiki or you can allow only your company’s employees to access your company’s wiki.

This is where Access Restriction features become a necessity.

With Helpie plugin + WordPress, restrict access to specific people ( by WordPress’ user roles ) to your entire wiki. You can also restrict access to specific user roles for each topic.

There’s also access restriction that works by password protection, ie. you create passwords for specific topics and send them to people who you want to access those wiki articles under those topics.

 

Topics:

Any properly organized wiki should have topics under which articles are organized. The wiki also should have topics with subtopics under them when necessary.

You could do this well in WordPress based wikis.

 

Table of Contents:

To make navigation easy on your wiki website, you can use a site-wide Table of Contents in your sidebar.

Your Table of Contents should let you show all your topics and subtopics with corresponding links. This will make it super easy to navigate the entire wiki.

 

Rich Text Editor:

Rich Text is the way of the modern web. Almost every category of web tools now feature rich-text editors, but some traditional wiki software still have not-so-rich rich text editors.

But while choosing a wiki platform, you should definitely expect a rich-text editor.

This is another place where WordPress shines.

 

Rich Media:

The Rich Text Editor is incomplete without the ability to insert rich media files like images, videos, gifs, etc.

Not to worry, WordPress + Helpie is definitely the best way to go if you care about rich media.

You can upload media to your WordPress directly or use videos from a third-party like Youtube or Vimeo. If you are using a shared hosting service and expect a high volume of traffic, I would recommend hosting your videos on third-party platforms like Vimeo or Youtube.

 

Wiki Front Page:

Creating a clean, clear and organized front page for your wiki is very important. This is also where you can brand your wiki in a way that stays in your audience’s mind.

Your wiki WordPress plugin/theme should have a way for you to brand your wiki, have a simple and organized listing of topics and most importantly a search tool that’s located prominently in your front page.


Feedback System:

Your users should be able to share their feedback on your articles. Feedback could be

  • Comments
  • Votes

Your wiki’s feedback system can be used even by your fans who do not contribute to your wiki. Feedback in the form of comments or votes is an easier way for them to communicate and contribute to the discussion in the article.

 

Search:

The more your wiki grows, the more prominent the search feature is going to be.

This is why your search needs to be powerful and super fast. These are some of the must-have features for your wiki’s search:

Live Search Suggestions:

No one wants to type in their entire search term. If your wiki’s search can auto-suggest as they type in the keyword, it’s a good experience for your user. Users nowadays expect this by default as it’s how all popular websites including Google work.

Search Speed:

Your wiki’s search should be able to look through thousands of articles and return the correct search suggestions and results within a second. All this with hundreds or thousands of users searching through at the same time.

Partial Matching:

People don’t often remember the exact keyword or phrase to search for. That’s why we need our search to return suggestions and results based on a partial match of the keywords in the content.

Keyword Weighted results:
Somewhere the simple match might not return the correct result, this is why you need a search engine that can weigh the keyword usage in the content and turn the most important results first.

These search features might not be something that’s part of a visible element in your wiki, but nevertheless, these features make a robust wiki.

 

Integration with Drag and Drop Page Builders:
The WordPress is rich with powerful page builder plugins that make your inner designer come alive.

To fully utilize the benefits that come from page builders, you should choose WordPress Wiki Plugins that are compatible with these page builders.

Helpie is compatible with almost every major page builders. If you want my recommendation for a page builder, I suggest Elementor.


Best WordPress Wiki Plugins:

 

Helpie WordPress Plugin:

helpie-preview-image

First comes a little shameless self-promotion. Helpie is Pauple’s Knowledge Base / Wiki plugin. It has got you covered with the basic features that you need in a Wiki plugin.

It has all the must-have features mentioned above.

The only place it lags is the revision system for wikis. This is where we are working on right now. You can use WordPress’s default revision system to tackle this as of now. Or you can use other WordPress revision plugins to handle that.

 

UserPress Wiki:

 

UserPress Wiki is another WordPress Wiki Plugin that has some small use cases covered.

Major Features:

Iframe Preview:
Get a preview of another related wiki page without browsing to / opening that page.

User Restrictions:
Create basic user access restriction settings.

Archives & Sorting:
Sort and organize your wiki by categories, sub-categories, by alphabetical order, by date, etc.

Track Changes:
Track the changes to wiki articles.

Flags:
Flag the wiki article to show if something is incomplete or incorrect.

History and Revision Notes:
See the history and revision notes of the wiki.

Live Search:
Get Live search suggestions as you type in your search term.

 

Pressapp’s Knowledge Base | Wiki WordPress Plugin:


Pressapp’s Knowledge Base | Wiki plugin has features that are good for a Knowledge Base and somewhat basic wiki websites. Even though it’s not enough to run a proper wiki, it suffices for some people’s basic usage.

 

Major Features:

  • Live article search
  • Drag and Drop article reorder
  • Article voting
  • Layout options
  • List articles shortcodes
  • Article and category widgets
  • Responsive Design

Best WordPress Wiki Themes:

Most WordPress Wiki Themes you see in the market are Knowledge Base / Wiki themes, so they are suited for a Wiki website in some cases, but in certain aspects like frontend editing/revision interface, they might not be.

 

Knowledge Base – A WordPress Wiki Theme

Knowledge Base is the name of this WordPress Wiki Theme. This is a clean and feature-rich Wiki theme built with Twitter Bootstrap. This theme is used in around 700 websites.

Major Features:

  • Responsive Layout
  • 4 Color Skins
  • BBPress Integration to support forums
  • Ajax Based Live Search 

HelpGuru – A Self-Service Knowledge Base WordPress Theme

HelpGuru is one of the more popular Knowledge Base WordPress themes from Herothemes. It’s being used around 2,300 folks and has an average rating of 4.7/5.

 

Major Features:

  • Live Search
  • Article Feedback
  • Content Ordering
  • Article Attachment
  • Widgets Included
  • Configure With Ease
  • SEO Optimised
  • Translation Ready
  • Multi-Language Support
  • Premium Support 

HelpGuru also has considerable integrations with WordPress’ customizer to help you customize your front page with ease.

KnowHow – A Knowledge Base WordPress Theme

 

KnowHow is another WordPress Knowledge Base Theme from Herothemes. This can well work as a substitute to a WordPress wiki theme. This is the most popular WordPress Knowledge Base / Wiki themes in ThemeForest which over 4,000 people using it. This comes with a few good WordPress wiki templates as well.

Major Features:

  • Provide Instant Answers
  • FAQ Page Included
  • SEO Optimised
  • Translation Ready
  • Multi-Language Support

There are other free WordPress wiki themes as well, but these are the themes that are well suitable for people who are serious about making a good Wiki website.


Importance of💡 Knowledge Management and Why You Need It

knowledge-management-wordpress

☄☄☄ There’s no way to understate the importance of Knowledge Management in the 21st-century organization.

If you are a business person, management student or someone who is involved in a business organisation or a non-profit organization, you might have heard the term Knowledge Management (KM). So, what is KM? If you search the internet for answers you get different definitions in each site, that is because there is no single definition for KM. Different organizations will continue to use different definitions of KM because their value chains benefit from different types of knowledge. Based on the type of knowledge that an organization intends on leveraging, there will be different approaches and definitions to KM.

KM is the process of creating and sharing knowledge thereby, maximizing their potential which makes them intangible assets of the organization. KM is about making significant knowledge available to the necessary people.

In his famous quote, Lew Platt, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, once said: “If HP knew what HP knows, we would be three times more productive.”

In other words, knowledge management makes it easier to find the information or the people who hold the information you need.

A rough idea of KM

In earlier days, people used to learn cooking by reading recipe books. Tough people gained knowledge of the recipes they could not replicate the original taste of the dish. Nowadays, we have all the cooking videos on the internet and we could have better knowledge of how the materials are prepared and handled. But this still does not ensure that you could reproduce the original taste 100%. This is because the dishes depends in all of the practices of cooking, starting from hand-picking each of the vegetables, chopping techniques, handling the utensils and even the knowledge of the spread of heat in that utensil. If this complete knowledge is shared it could ensure that the taste if the dish remains unchanging even though cooked by many other individuals.

This provision is what knowledge management provides and in this Information era, KM can be crucial when it comes to large organizations which have a bulk knowledge in the form of experience and ideas, needs to chose what is important for innovation or for the growth of the company. Also when it comes to small organisations or start-ups, one significant piece of knowledge needs to be successfully transferred so that it can continue to exist.

 

Why you need a KM?

The importance Knowledge Management cannot be understated. It can help any organisation to grow and to evolve. These are listed below:

 

Wilful nature of KM

The best aspect to KM is that it encourages individuals to share their knowledge willfully. This knowledge can be found in various methods starting from storytelling. There are companies which have made the submission of contents mandatory. They have created shared knowledge repositories, such as databases. But because of their mandatory nature, there is a lot of other supplementary information which is lost and there is bulk information collected which could be considered as Junk.

 

Network effect

KM could create a ‘network’ effect by allowing to connect people with the purpose of sharing knowledge, making that knowledge more easily accessible. Imagine that there are various groups of people working in a company like Developers, Testers, Marketing and Customer relations. The knowledge that is possessed by each of this group, on the whole, helps the success of the company. The communication that is between each of these departments is of relevance to all other departments. KM devises a way to best transfer this communicated knowledge to relevant people, so as to be able to take advantage of it or to ensure that relevant knowledge is not lost.

 

Knowledge as an Asset

KM is useful because it places a focus on knowledge as an actual asset, rather than as something intangible and considers intellectuality as a capital in organizations. Let’s say that a person has gained a lot of knowledge through his experience in a certain area of a profession and wants to pass this knowledge to others, most probably his successors. Here the knowledge in his mind must be communicated and the person not only should understand it, but also internalize it so that they can effectively use this knowledge.

 

Stimulates a Cultural change

Actively managing organizational knowledge can also stimulate cultural change and innovation by encouraging the free flow of ideas. KM could provide a platform to interact. Interactions would take place in a structured process by giving the members a free and open atmosphere to explain their thoughts and ideas. This would create an atmosphere for the all of members to feel belonged to the organisation and mutual respect and understanding towards their leaders.

For example, GE (General Electric) an American multinational corporation has created a Change Acceleration Process (CAP) program which includes management development, business-unit leadership, and focused workshops. CAP was created to not only convey the latest knowledge to up-and-coming managers but also open up dialogue, instill corporate values, and stimulate cultural change.

 

Failures and Learning routine

knowledge-management-learning

To move ahead, one must often first look behind” and  “A productive failure is better than an unproductive success” is some of the words of wise men. KM provides a way to investigate the failures in order to identify the shortcomings and reasons for failures in organisations. It helps to share success and failures in the organization to create a culture of mutual trust and belief. Blaming others for failures leaves less chance for learning.

For example, the United States Army has created a learning organisation called the After Action Reviews (AARs) to continuously assess their units and to look for ways to improve. After every important activity or event, Army teams review assignments, identify successes and failures, and seek ways to perform better the next time.

 

Innovation and the Bigger picture

knowledge-management

A systematic creation and transfer of knowledge could trigger the innovation process. Imagine knowledge as Dots and KM as the network that connects the Dots. This network can help to identify the picture that remained hidden under the Dots. This could help you to understand and identify the potential markets which were right under your nose but you failed to notice because of the ignorance to see the bigger picture. KM makes room for active experimentation which usually does not affect the live system resulting in minimal consequence damage and provides a platform to understand cause and effect events. In other words, KM increases efficiency and productivity and allows you to work better, reducing the tendency to “reinvent the wheel.”

 

Increase in Customer Satisfaction

KM facilitates ways to speed up access to information and this is very useful for the sharing of knowledge in cross-collaboration projects help to increase the value offered to customers. The organization is able to give faster answers or shorten the time it takes to improve a product or service. This leads to better customer satisfaction.

 

Many companies have invested in KM systems

Many of the multinational companies have already invested KM systems. For example, GE (General Electric) has a Corporate Executive Council (CEC) to help executives cut through the noise, share information, and improve their decision-making. The CEC is composed of the heads of GE’s fourteen major businesses and the two-day sessions are forums for sharing best practices, accelerating progress, and discussing successes, failures, and experiences. KMWorld which is a magazine for articles on KM has released 100 Companies That Matter in Knowledge Management 2017 gives you the list of companies that have implemented KM systems in their organisations.

 

KM is the Future

Looking at the way the world is growing in Artificial Intelligence (AI), it is obvious that AI’s would replace most of the work done by humans in the future. Assuming that they could have equal access to the knowledge of the world. Their only difference could be in their KM system which determines how an AI would effectively use this knowledge.

 

The information mentioned here is just the layer of cream on a cake. There is lots of research done in KM and many models of KM also have come. The fact that KM is a necessity is irrefutable. Both now and for the future!

If you want to take your organization to the next level, I welcome you to try Helpie Knowledge Base plugin for WordPress.


Create a WordPress Helpdesk [ Guide + Plugins + Themes ]

Looking for a way to build a great customer support Helpdesk from your WordPress website?

No idea where to start?

In this article, I will take you through the must-have features and some advanced features that can be a powerful asset to have in a WordPress Helpdesk plugin.

And then, I will review a few WordPress Helpdesk plugins that match our criteria, at-least those that are closest.

You probably know what a Helpdesk is, but just for standardization, let me clearly define a Helpdesk in the context of popular use.

What’s a Helpdesk?

 

create-wordpress-helpdesk

A Helpdesk is a portal/website/part of a website which your users can get help from.

If you are selling products on your website, your customers would most definitely expect support for those products.

In fact, you can have a Helpdesk for any product or service that you sell.

A Helpdesk / Help center / Live Help / Customer Support or whatever you call it, should ultimately be about providing customer support.

Before we start, let me define a few terms from the context of the WordPress plugins ecosystem:

A WordPress Helpdesk plugin is supposed to be a plugin with the entire feature set of Support Ticketing, Knowledge Base and also a little more ( keep reading to see what other features a Helpdesk might have ).

But, most plugins called WordPress Helpdesk plugin have either Support Ticket or Knowledge Base features but not both.

A WordPress Help center plugin is the same as Helpdesk, and this term is commonly used by WordPress Support Ticket plugins.

A WordPress Customer Support system is the same as Helpdesk / Help center.

A WordPress Support Ticketing system plugin is just as it says, just the Support Ticketing features in a plugin.

A WordPress Knowledge Base Wiki plugin is a plugin that can be used to create a self-help portal/product documentation section as part of your Helpdesk. It could also be used to create a public/private Knowledge Base for varied purposes or a Wiki website.

A WordPress Product Documentation plugin is almost similar to a Knowledge Base plugin with mostly the same features, maybe lesser features. But, used with product documentation in mind. You can even use a Knowledge Base plugin to create a product documentation as mentioned.

A WordPress Support plugin usually mean a support ticketing system plugin.

If you are interested in any of these, you are in the right place.

Keep this in mind:

In terms of functionality, a Helpdesk should typically consist of a minimum of

  • Support Ticketing system
  • Knowledge Base / Documentation system

And there could also be

  • FAQ section
  • Forums
  • Live Support / Help Chat

Now that we have clearly established what a Helpdesk is, let me go through each part in detail.

KNOWLEDGE BASE:

A Knowledge Base is a part of any good Helpdesk system. You can use it as a self-help portal for your customers.

If you want a Knowledge Base as part of your Helpdesk, you will find this article on WordPress Knowledge Base plugins useful.

SUPPORT TICKET SYSTEM:

Now, we can talk about the Support Ticketing part of the Helpdesk.

The support ticket system is a mission-critical component of your customer support, and so you need a good set of criteria for choosing a WordPress Support Ticket plugin.

Who needs a Support Ticket System?

woocommerce-helpdesk

Woocommerce website owners:
If you have a Woocommerce website and you sell products, then you definitely need a support ticket system.

Your customer might have issues with payment, delivery or the product itself.

And there’s no better way to handle, track and resolve all your customer’s needs than using a solid WordPress support ticket plugin.

Tech Support for digital products:
If you sell digital products, you can also use a WordPress Support Ticket to provide tech support/basic customer support for your digital products.

This is great for people selling WordPress, Joomla, Drupal or any other themes or plugins.

There are many other digital products which you may be selling, but the bottom-line is if you have a WordPress website, you can use one of the awesome support ticket plugins to provide tech support.

Others who might want a support ticket system:

  • Customer care agencies
  • Support outsourcing/handling agencies
  • Call centers

Have I missed anyone? Let me know in the comments if you are looking for a support ticket solution that falls in any other use case.

Must-Have Features:
There are certain basic features that your support ticket system must have. You might not need these features when you get started but you will, eventually.

It’s better to start with a really robust plugin instead of trying to switch after some time.

Remember this while you use a plugin,

Customer Service should not be a department, it should be the entire company.

-Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos

 

Feature 1: Email Support

email-support

Over time, there have been many channels and platforms where support is taking place, but email has remained consistent and a preferred channel for customer support.

This is not going to change for a long, long time.

Remember the predictions about the death of email?

Just not happening.

David Newman said,

“ Email has an ability that many channels don’t: creating valuable, personal touches – at scale “

For those reasons, your WordPress support ticket software/plugin should integrate well with email support.

Things to look for:

i) People can send email to your support email address, and that gets forward to your server and added to the support tickets list correctly.

ii) You and your customers should be able to reply to the support email thread, and that should also be synced to your support tickets.

Feature 2: User Roles

user-roles-wordpress

The Support Ticket WordPress plugin that you choose should have the basic roles that a customer support system cannot work without.

The must-have roles are Admin, Customer Support Agent and the Customer roles.

The Manager/Supervisor role is also used in almost every medium-sized support team.

Having the option of adding more roles and specifying specific permissions for those roles is a great feature to have.

The plugin’s features should be closely integrated with WordPress’ capabilities to have a smooth workflow that can integrate well with other WordPress User Role Editor plugins. This means that the permission and user role creation can be done with other plugins.

 

Feature 3: Ticket Management

wordpress-tickets-sorting

You probably know this:

Managing tickets is the biggest source of headache for customer support managers and support agents.

Consider that when you choose a Support Ticket plugin.

You will definitely need ticket management features for,

Filtering tickets based on customer, agent, ticket status, department or any other customer meta values. The filtering options could vary based on who is using it. Different roles like admin, manager, support agent and customer might have different filtering options based on their need.

Sorting tickets should work just as well as the filtering tickets options.

Admin actions that let the admin have control over the entire customer support system. Some actions that admin should be able to perform are adding new managers or agents, changing user’s role, etc.

Manager actions that let the support manager control what happens to his/her department. For example, the manager should be able to get notified if a ticket is unanswered for 24 hours.

Support agents and customers also should have specific actions that they are able to perform on what they are permitted to manage.

Feature 4: Reporting:

wordpress-tickets-report

If you really want to create an excellent customer service setup, then customer support reporting is super important.

You only improve, what you measure.

Here’s what Zapier recommends that you measure:

Volume:

  • Total Conversations
  • Total Replies
  • Total Volume by Hours or Working Hours

Response Time:

  • Average Response Time
  • Time to First Response
  • Response Time Bands

Happiness:

  • Net Promoter Score
  • In-Signature Happiness ratings

Product Trends:

  • Label/Tag Data

Having a reporting system that shows you the vital data of the working of your customer support is a powerful tool in your bag.

You can use this information to drastically improve your customer’s experience, money spent on support and of course, your bottom line.

 

Feature 5: Custom Fields for Ticket Creation Process

 

custom-fields-wordpress

Not every business is the same, neither is their customer support requirements.

Exactly why your support ticket request forms need to have fields that are specific to your organization.

Plugins that allow you to add your own custom fields are the way to go.

Custom fields are an excellent way to get more information on the customer’s issue.

The more information you get right at the start of the support process, the easier and quicker your support team can resolve the issue.

 

Feature 6: Search

 

search-tickets-wordpress

Search is super important for finding the tickets you are looking for faster.

Especially when you have hundreds of tickets, your search will make a lot of difference in your support team’s ability to find and resolve tickets faster.

The search will also be uniquely useful to administrators and managers for two reasons:

Looking through tickets to assign, take over or resolve
Look for tickets with common keywords to add to the Knowledge Base

 

Feature 7: Frontend Support

The issue I have noticed with a lot of WordPress Support Ticket plugins is that their customers have to access the WordPress Dashboard to create tickets or respond to replies to the support ticket.

This might work for some. But in general, this is not a great experience for your customers.

Never ever do this to your premium customers.

Or you risk damaging your brand.

I recommend that you choose a WordPress plugin that has a clean frontend interface to handle your entire process and has a good user experience.

 

Advanced Features:

 

Feature 8: Macros

 

Macros are powerful tools for automating various parts of your customer support process.

In essence, Macros are a set of actions that modify the values in a support ticket based on specific conditions that you specify.

For example,

In an enterprise support software like Freshdesk or Zendesk, you can create a macro to send an automated, quick, personal response when a customer creates a new ticket.

 

Feature 9: Access Restriction

access-restrict-wordpress

You probably want only your customers to create a support ticket.

To make sure that only they can, and others don’t waltz right in and submit random tickets, you need an access restriction feature.

One way to go is to use another plugin like MemberPress to control access by memberships.

But if your plugin has in-built access restriction that’s specific to your need that’s even better. But that’s rare.

One final advice,

If you provide premium support, it would recommend a paid support ticket system who provide quality support.

 

Best Knowledge Base Plugins:

 

Recommendation #1:

helpie-preview-image

 

I can wholeheartedly recommend Helpie KB plugin for your Knowledge Base part of the Helpdesk. Not just because it’s ours, but it’s something we have built with the consideration of what a Knowledge Base plugin should be like.

Recommendation #2:

 

herothemes-plugin
Herotheme’s Knowledge Base plugin is another popular name in the Knowledge Base category, but it’s pretty costly at $129.

 

Best Knowledge Base Themes:

 

KnowHow:

knowhow-wordpress-theme

 

KnowHow is a Knowledge Base Theme by Herothemes, and it has over 4,000 sales. If you just need a basic theme for your Knowledge Base, you can use this.

Features:

Live Ajax search: KnowHow WordPress Theme has a sleek live search like the other themes from Herothemes.

Sidebar Navigation: The KnowHow Theme has a sidebar with the Knowledge Base categories and makes for an easy navigation of your entire Knowledge Base.

Multilingual Support: The KnowHow Theme has multilingual support and is compatible with WPML Multilingual Plugin.

FAQ: You also get the option to add an FAQ page to your website with KnowHow theme’s FAQ feature.

Also, you can reorder FAQ items, add a sidebar for FAQ a live search the FAQ items as well.

 

HelpGuru:

 

helpguru-wordpress-theme

 

HelpGuru is a little more advanced WordPress Knowledge Base theme by the same author, Herothemes. The design is a bit more modern, and it comes with much better integration with customizer that helps you customize the appearance.

A lot of big names use Herothemes’ themes.

The list includes Ghost CMS, Restaurant.com, OptimizePress, CrazyEgg, Procurify, Clutch.

Features:

Live search: Search your knowledge base using an Ajax based live search.

Article feedback: Get feedback on your articles to improve your articles to better serve your customer’s queries or correct a mistake.

Content ordering: Use a drag and drop builder to reorder your content.

Article Attachments: Add downloadable files to your Knowledge Base articles.

Widgets included: You can use HelpGuru’s widgets to add articles, categories anywhere on your website.

Easy configuration: HelpGuru has a good set of admin panel options to let you config your Knowledge Base website with ease.

 

Best Support Ticketing Plugins:

 

Awesome Support WordPress Plugin:

awesome-support-plugin

 

Awesome Support is one of the most popular WordPress Support Ticket plugins currently and is used on 6,000+ websites. It’s a free plugin with a lot of paid pro-extensions.

Pros:

Email: It has some good email support features that let your customers submit tickets via email. Reply to emails by your agents and your clients is also possible.

Custom Fields: You also have the option to add custom fields to the ticket submission form. This is a real plus.

Sorting and Filtering: There are some nice sorting and filtering options that help you find those tickets that you are looking for.

See all features and try the free version here >>

 

WP Support Plus Responsive Ticket System:

 

wp-support-plus-responsive-ticket-system

WP Support Plus is being used on over 10,000 websites currently, and it’s easily the most popular plugin on WordPress.org.

Pros:

Frontend Ticket Management: WP Support has a better frontend ticket management than the Awesome Support plugin. The filtering, sorting, etc. are much better too.

User Roles: The WP Support Plus WordPress plugin has a supervisor role (aka Support Manager role ) for managing the agents.

Advanced Filtering: With the WP Support Plus plugin, you can do advanced filtering and also save the filtering options.

So the next time you login in, your favorite filter is already set.

See all features and try the free version here >>

 

Sola Support Tickets:

 

sola-support-plugin

Sola Support Tickets is a relatively new WordPress Support Tickets plugin but has a couple of interesting features in the pro version that you might like. The pro version is also relatively cheaper than Awesome Support’s or WP Support Plus’ pro versions.

Pros:

Macros: Using Sola’s macros, you can create custom responses to your customer’s tickets. This is a standout feature in the Sola Support Tickets. But this is a premium feature.

Departments: Sola WordPress Support Ticket plugin gives you the ability to assign tickets to different departments and its agents. This is also a premium feature.

See all features and try the free version here >>

SupportEzzy – WordPress Ticket System:

 

supportezzy-wordpress-plugin

 

SupportEzzy is the only premium plugin in this list, but its very affordable and gives you good value for your money.

Pros:

Vue.js App: What this means for you is that your frontend where your customers manage the plugin is a pretty robust ‘app’ in its own right.

It’s a dynamic frontend app that updates and works without the need to refresh the page. Vue.js is the javascript frontend framework technology that’s increasingly preferred by standalone app developers.

Integrations: Another thing that sets SupportEzzy apart is its integration with other platforms/plugins that you could be using,

  • Envato
  • Gumroad
  • Woocommerce
  • Skype

WSDesk – WordPress Helpdesk  Plugin:

 

WSDesk is another freemium plugin with amazing premium features. The premium version of the plugin is definitely among the best in terms of features. The plugin is also updated frequently with new features and bug fixes.

Pros:

Triggers and Automation (aka Macros): This is one of the best features of WSDesk which is somewhat lacking in the other plugins. It saves a lot of your time and energy and lets you sit back while you automate most important aspects of your customer support.

Auto Suggestion System: Autosuggestion system helps you reduce support time by redirecting users to your knowledge base articles.

Here’s a list of the other premium features of WSDesk as well:

  • Auto Tagging And Assigning
  • Auto Suggestion System
  • Ticket Custom Views
  • Triggers & Automation
  • Automated Emails
  • Customer Feedback Survey
  • Agent’s Satisfaction Rating
  • WSDesk Backup & Restore
  • WooCommerce Fields & Reports
  • One Year Support & Updates
  • Email Support System
  • Ajax Based System
  • Wonderful UI
  • Agents Reports
  • Customizable Ticket Fields
  • Agents Management
  • Customizable Support Form
  • Attachment support
  • Import Zendesk Tickets
  • Unlimited Agents
  • Reporting and Analysing Tool

Apart from these standout support ticketing plugins for WordPress, I have to mention some other notable plugins.

Other notable plugins:

  • Wphelpdesk
  • JS support ticket
  • Zendesk for WordPress
  • Freshdesk for WordPress

 

Best Support Ticketing Themes:

These are currently the most promising WordPress Support Ticket themes.

One point to note is that most of the themes in this category promote themselves as WordPress Helpdesk theme, but only a few are truly that.

 

TicketLab by BigBangThemes

 

ticketlab-wordpress-support-ticket-plugin

TicketLab is a premium WordPress Support Ticket / Helpdesk theme that lets you run a support ticket website by yourself.

Pros:

Clean Interface: TicketLab has a clean interface for your customer support portal. Both your clients and your agents have access to the frontend dashboard.

This is a much better experience for everyone.

Integrations: TicketLab has a couple of very useful integrations, Trello and Github.

This is excellent for support teams that use Trello to track bugs and issues. And also the development teams that use Github to develop, track issues, commit and manage releases.

There are also integrations with Envato, Zendesk and Visual Composer that might be worth looking into.

 

Helpdesk by JanStudio

helpdesk-wordpress-theme

 

To clarify, Helpdesk here is the name of the theme. Helpdesk calls itself the WordPress Support Center theme. It’s a premium theme as well.

Pros:

BBPress Compatible: Helpdesk Theme is compatible with BBPress, that makes it easier for you to integrate an entirely new facet of customer support.

You now have Ticketing + Forums.

Envato Integration: If you sell products on Envato, then this theme can help you verify your customers with the Envato purchase code validation API.

Important Note:
The reviewed features are just the unique and important aspects that caught our eyes. Please read the products’ documentation or try their demo to get a full view of the product.

If this article was helpful or if you have any questions or something to share, please comment below.

Bonus: Get a free demo of Helpie Knowledge Base plugin now


7 Must-Have Features to look for in a Knowledge Base Plugin [ GUIDE ]

Fair Warning: You might want to try Helpie WordPress Knowledge Base plugin right away to get hands-on experience of awesomeness.

This is the most complete guide to help you choose a WordPress Knowledge Base plugin online.

Read this article completely and if it doesn’t help, we will give you your time back.

( if they invent the time machine in the future. )

Keep reading….

I’ll show you the 7 Must-Have Features that is essential in choosing a WordPress Knowledge Base Plugin and even tell you why these features matter to you.

 

Feature # 1: A Powerful Search Engine


This feature is in my opinion, the Numero Uno in a WordPress Knowledge Base system.

Why?

Have you come across a website called Google lately and thought about why it’s so popular?

Because, with a large repository of Knowledge, searching and finding the most relevant content is the biggest superpower.

How well the search works matters, because:

Computers and the Internet have made people more impatient. People want to find the right information fast. The faster you give them the most relevant information, the happier they are.

Building on that simple fact, HERE’S A SECRET ABOUT YOUR CUSTOMERS:

Your customers prefer a Knowledge Base better than customer support medium like support tickets or even live chat support.

Why?

Speed.

And if you choose the right Knowledge Base Wiki plugin, it would be easily accessible and super easy to solve their particular issue.

That’s why.

Here’s what research shows:

how-people-use-search-knowledge-base

Over 91% of people don’t go to the second page of Google to find a solution to their query.

Over 50% of people in most cases don’t look beyond the first 3 results on the FIRST PAGE OF GOOGLE.

The bottom-line is that your Knowledge Base’s search could result in a  frustrated customer, unless your search is really really good.

So, what specific superpowers should your Knowledge Base’s search have?

My suggestions,


Important Search Feature #1:
Partial Searching


People are too lazy.

They can afford to be because of the technological advancements.

As a website owner, you can’t expect your users to search the exact terms your articles have.

That’s exactly why your Knowledge Base should also be forgiving in accepting partially correct keywords and match them using “partial matching” algorithm to find even articles that partially match their search query.



Important Search Feature #2:
Search Based on Keyword Weightage

There’s an entire field of marketing called SEO marketing that deals with how to optimise for top positions in Google’s search.

Let’s borrow some ideas from there to see what we want in our search…


One of the ways that Google prioritizes the results is by the position of the keyword in a particular page,

Whether it occurs in the first paragraph or last.

If there are more than one instances of that particular keyword, but not too many to be spammy and so on.

Important Search Feature #3:
Lookup Speed

 

Speed. Yes, we already talked about speed.

But, here’s one more thing you really have to pay attention to:

Does your Knowledge Base search return results super fast even with thousands of articles in it and quite a few people using it at the same time?

That’s what matters, when testing out a WordPress plugin to use, if it would deliver under the real world scenario.

 

Feature # 2: User Insights

              “ You cannot improve, what you do not measure. “  – Lord Kelvin

 

lord-kelvin-quote

 

Not sure that quote is true?

Ask any successful E-commerce webmasters, they’ll give you a list of tools that they use to measure their traffic, bounce rate, heatmaps, etc.

And even web design industry is slowly moving away from just aesthetic design to data-driven design.

The Benefits of User Insights is two-fold:

  • You have a better understanding of what your users find useful in your knowledge base | helpdesk | wiki that you created with the WordPress plugin
  • You can use the insight to add missing information, articles which people don’t find useful, etc. in your knowledge base

Awesome!

Now, which data do we measure and convert into Insights?

With Helpie, our own WordPress Knowledge Base plugin, we measure these,

A. User Happiness:

Ultimately nothing else matters.

If your users are happy, you are happy. Helpie WordPress KB Plugin measures user happiness from users’ votes and gives you a comprehensive Overall User Happiness score.

You can just use this as your North Star to see the state of your Knowledge Base.

B. Most Useful and the Non-So-Useful Articles:

Time to zoom in.

Finding the most useful and not so useful articles can tell you which ones you can feel happy about and which ones, you need to fix.

This is an actionable insight that you can take and fix immediately.

This is like monitoring the state of your entire Helpdesk or Customer Support section and fixing its core issues that would result in much less load on your customer support agents.

Believe me, your customer support team will thank you for this feature.

C. What Users Search For:

What better way to know what’s in your customer’s mind than knowing what they search for?

Even in a very simple Knowledge Base, this feature would make a big difference in terms of:

I.    What new content to add to your knowledge base
Ii.   Where your users need more help in terms of better product design/feature

D. Which articles are most viewed:

Bragging rights! Bragging rights for your contributors is just one of the appeals for having this feature.

What else?

Well, you can go back to the most viewed articles and use that to model and improve the other articles.

In some cases, improving the most viewed articles can reduce the support requests by a very large quantity.

Hope you can agree with me on this:

Insights are crucial to help you define your Knowledge Base’s success, and it’s worth investing in.

 

Feature # 3: Access Control

 

Creating a private Knowledge Base with access restricted only to members?

Then, you need an Access Control feature that is robust and can work with membership plugins.

Not to blow our own horn, but Helpie does this pretty well.

Who needs access control anyway?

Well, these people and you… if you are one of them:

10x teams or teams who want to be 10X:
Are you a team leader or part of a team that just isn’t happy with “Satisfactory” work?

Do you want to operate with a GROWTH MINDSET?

Then, you need to invest in creating a HUB OF KNOWLEDGE, a private internal Knowledge Base Wiki for your team.

There’s a demo website that you can look into and create your own internal Knowledge Base using Helpie.


A Personal Knowledge Base:

We know that Da Vinci, Richard Feynman were great learners.

How do we know that?

Mostly from their notes.

In this generation of digital immersion, however, you will be known as a great learner by how you collect, organize and process information digitally.

More specifically, your personal Knowledge Base.

If you are a researcher, Ph.D. student or a serious learner of any kind, you might want a place to gather all your learnings in a central place.


Now, you can do that in a web-based personal Knowledge Base system.

Why web-based?

With your Knowledge Base articles having links to pages all over the internet, it’s the ideal approach, and you can even collaborate with friends on specific topics.

Helpie has a comprehensive set of access control features including:

I. Access Restriction for Topics by User Roles:

This is perfect for you if you are creating a private WordPress Knowledge Base for your clients.

Or Maybe you are Coach or a Guru?

Then, you need this feature in your toolkit. Here’s what you can do:

STEP 1: Produce great content that delivers great value to your clients.

STEP 2: Use Access Controlled private Knowledge Base based website using Helpie.

STEP 3: If you need, use a plugin like MemberPress to manage membership to your website.

 

Ii. Access Restriction to Topics by Password Protection:

This is really handy if you want a quick setup of a private Knowledge Base.

Let’s say you want to give access to a specific Knowledge Base topic to your friends and only them. Not everyone wants to create a user account and go through that process.

A password-based access to Knowledge Base topics is perfect for this scenario.

Remember… Keep your passwords safe…. Always…

Feature #4: An amazing organization system

 

Data that are properly organized is information. And that’s when it’s really useful.

Let’s say you have 10 articles on various topics related to your product, and you just throw it out on a webpage. When your users start reading it without any context, they might get disinterested and leave your Knowledge Base.

Our mind remembers and engages with content by building relationships. A proper organization of Knowledge in your Knowledge Base is essential to keep your audience engaged.

Navigating information:

Using search is just one way to access information and it works well if your users remember related keywords to what they want to know.

What if your user is new to your field and has no idea where to start or how to approach?

This particular scenario of educating a new user is where a good organization/navigation system is incredibly valuable.

Inside Helpie WordPress Knowledge Base plugin, we do have the perfect solution by the name of Table of Contents.

What is Table of Contents?

A table of contents is a module which sits ( mostly ) in the sidebar of your entire Knowledge Base and has the topics, sub-topics, and articles organized in an hierarchical format.

Features you should wish for in a Table of Contents:

  • Automated jump-to links of subtitles inside each article. This feature would generate jump-to links in the table of contents when you add a subtitle using a Heading HTML tag ( H1, H2, H3, H4, etc. )
  • The ability to toggle the categories/topics so that if you have a long list of articles, you will be shown just the articles from one topic at a time
  • Highlight showing where you are in the entire Knowledge Base. This could be a highlight of the current article and the current topic/category
  • Ability to limit the number of articles shown in each topic/category in the table of contents
  • A fixed Table of Contents that stays fixed in the sidebar while you scroll the entire page

Feature #5: An easy interface to capture new information

wordpress-wiki-add-new-article-demo

Whenever you want an action performed better and more frequently, you need to have tools designed to make it natural.

That’s why an easy to use interface to capture and share new information is very essential.

The ability to add content from the front-end using a simple text-editor will make a huge difference.

For example, Helpie lets you give access to other users by their user roles and they can add or edit your articles from the frontend.

Having a collaborative environment will not only improve the quality of your Knowledge Base, it will encourage people to share more and learn more once they find that people are reading their work.

A Collaborative wiki website:

If you are an online multiplayer gaming fan, movie, sports team fan or anyone else who wants to create an online wiki where you can create and share content collaboratively, then you need this feature in your toolkit.

Wiki technology has not seen any exciting improvements over the last decade, but the WordPress ecosystem has.

You should seriously consider a WordPress based wiki with frontend editing.

Thought-Leadership inside your organization:

You should encourage leading skilled people to communicate their insights on various topics and help them to be recognized as thought leaders in your organization.

Collective ownership of your organization’s workings:
Imagine if only one person in your company knew how a particular piece of Devops worked.

 

And let’s say regretfully, she leaves your company. That’s a disaster waiting to happen if you don’t have a collective ownership of the process.

This goes across all scenarios like process management, data management, interpretation, etc.

Collective ownership of Knowledge mitigates this risk.

And an easy collaborative Knowledge Base interface is crucial to developing a collective ownership of Knowledge.

 

 

Feature #6: Feature to Brand/Style your Knowledge Base

“Design is the silent ambassador of a brand. “ – Paul Rand


Paul Rand is one of the most prominent designers of the last century having designed the iconic IBM logo, the logo for Steve Jobs’ NEXT company, etc.

He is a champion of consistency and design being a silent ambassador of a brand.

This is what you need in your Knowledge Base as well.

You need tools that help you design your Knowledge Base to be consistent with your overall brand.

Helpie Knowledge Base plugin comes with a set of tools that can help you here. These include:

Hero Customisation:
The Hero Customisation features let you add colors, color gradients, background images and vector images to customise your hero section across the entire Knowledge Base.

This is an excellent way to brand your Knowledge Base.

Main Categories Listing Options:

Depending on your user’s experience and your UX design, you can choose between 3 different styles of how categories are listed on your home page.

You can read more on Helpie’s categories listing options here.


Branded Knowledge Base = Better sales!

How?

Branding your Knowledge Base is especially useful for product websites which use Knowledge Base for their product’s documentation.

It’s because you can use your documentation to write on domain topics and establish yourself as a domain authority. This will create a strong affiliation in the user’s mind about your brand’s authority in that domain.

A great example for this is Moz, who create awesome blogs posts as well as have created a Knowledge Base for SEO called SEO Learning Center.

This is an excellent way to get the audience who are interested in your domain to get interested in your brand.

 

Feature #7: Feedback System

 

user-feedback-system-wordpress

 

Any system without feedback is a broken system.

That’s why you need strong feedback features in your Knowledge Base system.

There are 2 good sources of feedback,

Comments are an excellent way to get feedback and to understand what the users are thinking. Your users can suggest corrections, share their appreciation or even start a conversation around the topic. A good community can develop around your Knowledge Base topics when you have comments enabled and nurture the conversation.

Not everyone is willing to engage on that level though, most people just want to have minimum interaction.

Voting is a really good way to engage with such people. They can just share their emotions ( if you Knowledge Base supports emo-voting ) or show if they like or dislike the article.

Helpie comes with two voting systems, which are classic voting and emo-voting.

Other features you might consider are

  • Having an FAQ section in your Knowledge Base website
  • A recent articles section on the main page
  • A related articles module under each article

Why is Helpie the Best Knowledge Base Plugin for WordPress?

 

We don’t say that because it’s our product…

Well, maybe a little. But most importantly, its because it has the 7 core features that we talked about. And implements them much better.

If you are convinced that you need a Knowledge Base for your business, personal website, etc we recommend Helpie, the best WordPress Knowledge Base plugin. You can also use Helpie in combination with the suggested WordPress themes for your Knowledge Base here.

Helpie WordPress Knowledge Base plugin is an excellent alternative to Heroic WordPress Knowledge Base plugin and Pressapps WordPress Knowledge Base.

Now it’s your turn, tell us what you are looking for in a Knowledge Base software.


A Comprehensive Introduction to Knowledge Management [GUIDE]

When you joined your first company, you probably went through a training program that taught you what to do and how.

You probably also had a line manager who coached you on the job ball by ball.

As months grew into years you’d have realized that you learned quite a lot of additional stuff all on your own, or is it?

Knowledge management in an organization is a planned and integral part of continuous improvement ensuring every employee has all the information he needs to perform all the tasks his role demands and fill all knowledge gaps himself through a structured system of knowledge capture, storage, and transfer.

So the way information is stored on various drives, and internet sites are not by accident but to ensure continuous learning and analysis.

It took ten thousand failed attempts before Edison invented the light bulb but because the knowledge was captured we do not have to repeat them. Hence it is not just what went right but also what did not work that needs to be captured.

Still with me?

Let me walk you through what Knowledge Management is and what it means for your business, organization or team.

Knowledge Management Strategies

With employee turnover at all levels, knowledge management has attained strategic significance as large numbers of employees have to be continually brought on board and in real-time.

Loss of people means not just loss of Knowledge but also an integral part of how the organization is run.

Sometimes when key people leave the loss may not just be of knowledge of how the business is run or task performed but also of the vision or the strategic direction of the organization itself. This is especially the case in startups.

The strategy should hence be to provide the right information to the right people at the right time as a matter of choice and not by chance, by capturing, identifying and distributing company, job, research, project, sales, software etc. information in a structured manner so that an employee can take on the batten from another seamlessly.

This information will also form the basis of training modules for the induction of new employees into particular functions.

There are many basic Knowledge Management Strategies you could adopt or you could develop your own.

Knowledge Management Process

The knowledge management process of your organization has to deliberately capture information first and foremost.

Does everyone who has the knowledge or generates it by virtue of his role in the organization capture it? The answer depends on; whether he has to or not.

Let’s go back in time and see what we can learn.

Ancient Indian Vedic knowledge has been lost as the process adopted for its transfer was orally from father to son with no written records and shrouded in secrecy.

Knowledge is power not only for an organization but also for the individual wielding it and hence there would be resistance to documenting key information. This is the reason many organizations structure their deliverables in a manner that involves data or knowledge capture in some ways.

For example, the number of finished reports published, submitted, uploaded onto the SharePoint etc. as a means of quantifying performance and delivery of targets with the hidden agenda of knowledge capture

Next in importance is to structure the storage and retrieval systems.

There are many places the information can be stored, the company’s intranet site comes to mind immediately but various department team rooms and shared drives are nearer to the employee and more private in terms of access as the information is valuable also to a competitor organization and may need to be access controlled.

Companies which are complex in their structure and vast in their operations and reach also have very complicated knowledge management systems stage wise, encompassing all levels of the organization.

Even a secretary has information that has to be confidentially stored and transmitted to a new incumbent should there be a reshuffle or turnover.

Information is captured and archived by reference to author and keywords to ensure quick retrieval and identification. Key learnings are captured as a capsule in important areas of operation like manufacturing, Quality, and research to enhance usefulness.

Abstracts and summaries save valuable time giving out only the crux of the information stored and in a usable manner. Even the formatting of this information capture is controlled e.g., the format for a visit report, a note, a research report, a consumer insight report may be rigidly laid out to enable completeness in data capture and standardization in its content.

Helpie Knowledge Base plugin is an advanced WordPress Knowledge Management plugin helps you achieve this seamlessly.

In today’s flat organizations and networked culture, lateral and spider web collaborations have gained sudden importance.

 

How can you collaborate with many people working on similar things in your organization locally or even internationally?

Can you get a solution for your accounting problem form another peer overseas?

Can you ask an expert in another country why you are not getting the proper results from your equipment?

Can you look at the success of a consumer promotion on a similar product and in a similar geography and if not can you ask someone there?

Social internal communication platforms and chat rooms are now gaining currency everywhere where like-minded employees mentor, share and even train others apart from sharing valuable insights and information.

In some cases, experts are mapped out onto networks with workflows routed to them such that when someone asks a question related to their area of expertise the software automatically routes the query to them and they then will have to send in a response within a given time.

Someone once told me that anyone who spends five years in a department becomes an expert in his role. Leveraging this expertise for the larger interests of the organization is one of the objectives of the knowledge management system.

 

Importance of Knowledge Management

That’s fine, you say. But why is it important to you and your organization NOW?

When everyone who needs a piece of information knows exactly where to look and how to search the database or document management system and finds it, the company saves a very valuable resource: time.

While working on a project if you know all the different people in your organization who might have worked on a similar project or even the same project at a different time and all their learnings and conclusions, you may not perform have the tasks or experiments that you’d otherwise have had to do. This saves another resource: money.

As the awareness of Knowledge Management is steadily increasing, companies that use Knowledge Management are looking for people who are trained and have knowledge management certification to run their Knowledge Mangement system.

Knowledge Management Theory 

The most important theory about Knowledge Mangement you should know before you invest in it is this:

i.  Communication flow is used to organized Knowledge in your Knowledge Management systems

ii.  Knowledge Organization is almost a mirror of people organization in most parts of an organization

iii. A feedback system is a crucial part of any Knowledge Management system

The success of an organization depends on how it continually reinvents itself.

For this, all employees should know how to store and access knowledge within the organization. This helps to learn from the past and also to enhance performance in the future, in the spirit of an ever-transforming, ever improving and ever-growing organizational culture.

Knowledge captured can be systematically analyzed and used in the organization for decision making and training. Researchers are well versed with knowledge analyses.

They routinely use tools like meta-analyses of various publications in order to glean significant information first before even starting their next research project.

Employees at every level should be trained to perform this task as everybody cannot know what the organization as a whole knows. Knowledge in the brain is useful to only one and can be lost or forgotten but the same document can be useful to many saving efforts for a lifetime.

Analyzing information also reveals various patterns and relationships that can miss even a trained eye. This can be very useful in choosing between difficult alternatives and key decision makers.

Many a time this improves accuracy, reduces wasteful expenditure, retain or expand market share and ensures success in a highly competitive marketplace where being first time right is very valuable to an organization.

Analyzing the captured knowledge can also reveal learnings that can then be systematically transformed into concepts that eventually influence the work culture and content and the way we perform.

Experts then transfer this new understanding into their training programs to ensure dissemination at the right levels and times. Sometimes this is what makes the employee different from another in a similar role in a different organization.

Summary

What did the famous seer, Nostradamus see? What did he want to convey? What do we hence need to do? What should we be prepared for?

Although the internet is rife with various interpretations of his prophecies, the language used by Nostradamus in the writing of his scrolls and the intention of secrecy does not leave much on the table for the seeker.

Though current knowledge management practices have far evolved from the scroll times, we still grapple with the same issues of unwillingness to share valuable information, piracy, and storage in an unintelligible manner.

If people looking for your information are likely to miss it all together, misinterpret it or miss the point you’re trying to make, then an opposite effect of information for information’s sake leading to overload and apathy can overtake and ruin your knowledge management process.

A culture of reward and recognition for knowledge created should be followed by the recognition given to the employee for sharing this knowledge through all possible channels, like mentorship of other employees, documenting the knowledge within the company’s system and circulating the learnings through expert networks.

This can build peer pressure to goad even low performers towards continuous improvement which cannot happen without continuous learning.

Check out Helpie WordPress plugin, if you want a simple web-based Knowledge Management solution that works with WordPress CMS.


10 Outstanding WordPress Themes for your Knowledge Base [ REVIEW ]

Here’s a comprehensive review of WordPress themes for your Knowledge Base. You love Helpie and want to use it for your Knowledge Base website, now which theme would you use to compliment your overall website’s purpose and Helpie’s features?

If you haven’t previously heard about Helpie, Helpie is the most advanced Knowledge Base builder that works with almost any theme. You have got to check Helpie out first.

At this point in time, there are not many WordPress knowledge base themes that are outstanding. But here’s an exhaustive list of awesome free and paid themes that along with Helpie does an amazing job:

Astra WordPress Theme:

 

Astra WordPress Theme is a free, lightweight WordPress theme that was designed to work well with other plugins. Especially, Astra works very well with the page builder plugins.

Astra also works great with Helpie. We took it for a spin and found it very simple to setup and config. Do get started on a Knowledge Base right away using Astra.

 

Helpie-knowledge-base-with-astra-theme
Helpie-knowledge-base-with-astra-theme

 

PROS:

Made for page-builders and domain-specific plugins like Helpie:
Astra is built distilled down to the essentials of a good theme without trying to do too many things. And everything is built modularly keeping in mind the functionality of powerful page builders and other plugins. This is what makes Astra stand out.

Super lightweight, super fast and highly-tuned for performance:
The theme has a Google Page Speed score of 95%; the GTMetrics loading time is 400ms and with a YSlow grade of 91%. This is very impressive indeed. These values vary based on your server, website content, etc., still, this is a very good base score to have.

Astra uses vanilla javascript and hence no JQuery dependency is used.

Customisation:
Astra has the essential customization features that you would need in a plugin. This is sufficient for basic users, but we always have the option of using a page builder like Elementor.

Free:
Astra has a free version which is pretty good. There are also more advanced features in the pro version.

Sites to Import:
Astra comes with a lot of pre-made data + design content that can mockup a website. You can practically choose a site you like and get started in 2 minutes flat.

 

OceanWP Theme:


oceanwp-wordpress-theme

OceanWP started as a fork from another WordPress theme but quickly improved by leaps and bounds, thanks to some great work by the lead developer. OceanWP is also a free theme but has powerful addon extensions that you can get on their website. OceanWP theme is an excellent choice if you want to start an e-commerce website with an added documentation/Knowledge Base on it. And of course, it works well with Helpie.

Pros:
1. Powerful Extensions:
OceanWP theme has a lot of powerful extensions that you can use to customize your header, side panels for your widgets, Elementor widgets and more.

2. Excellent Support:
OceanWP’s customers rave about its support. That’s a good thing when you consider a new theme. Just check out the reviews in WordPress.org repository, and you can see their support as one of the elemental reasons that people love OceanWP WordPress theme.

3. E-commerce Support:
OceanWP has excellent compatibility with Woocommerce and other E-commerce plugins. It even has specific customization features for Woocommerce.

4. Super Responsive:
A lot of effort has gone to make this theme to be very responsive and also to add several responsive enhancements. For example, the responsive controls feature lets you control your element’s style properties, visibility, arrangements, etc.

 

GeneratePress:

 

 

With over 1+ million downloads, GeneratePress is an established name in the WordPress themes category. GeneratePress like Astra is a lightweight theme with the developer being more cautious to add more features that would make the theme bloated. On the other hand, GeneratePress has withstood the test of time and is still a well-respected theme.

We tried setting up GeneratePress with Helpie. It wasn’t hard, but we felt the style was pretty dry. This doesn’t matter much because you can easily customise styles with the inbuilt customizer features and a little CSS as needed.

Compatibility with Page Builders:
The main reasoning behind GeneratePress being lightweight is that it should make way for powerful page builders like Elementor to do their thing. GeneratePress has excellent compatibility for Elementor, Visual Composer and also Beaver Builder.

Excellent Support:
This is a recurring quality of the top themes we have tried; they have a commitment to providing awesome support.

Flexibility with features:
GeneratePress gives you the basic theme for free and gives you the option of adding powerful features by means of premium addons. You can get started with the basic lightweight theme and add only the specific features you need for each project.

Hestia:

 

hestia-wordpress-theme

 

Hestia is a material design theme brought to you by Themeisle with a free and pro version. According to WordPress.org, Hestia WordPress theme has over 50,000+ active installs and is slowly becoming the favorite free theme for professionals. There’s also a pro version of Hestia that comes with enhancements and additional features.

It has a slick design and is very easy on the eye as well. Hestia is compatible with Elementor, Woocommerce, Flat Parallax Slider among other plugins. The plugins named here are the ones that are most commonly used along with Hestia.

PROS:

Mega Menu:

If you like Mega Menus, you’ll love Hestia. Even with the free version, you get the Mega Menu. Now, you can add sub-menu, organize them, sort them and customize their style without a fuss. This is a standout feature from all other themes in this list.

Live Customizer:
Hestia’s integration with the Live Customizer is a gem among Hestia’s other features; you can easily customize many of Hestia’s widgets using the live customizer. About Us section, Your team section, Client Testimonials section, Ribbon section are few of the many widgets that are fully integrated with the Live Customizer. Thus, you could have full autonomy over the appearance of your homepage widgets.

Support:
The Themeisle team is renowned for their support, and there’s no difference in saying that Hestia is very well supported. Team Themeisle’s support policy is “Be like Blackbeard,” that’s to say that their support is as mighty as the pirate Blackbeard.

The7:

 

the7-wordpress-theme

 

The7 theme has been one of the highest selling themes on ThemeForest marketplace for a long time, and it doesn’t look like slowing down anytime soon. The7 is a rock solid theme with a ton of features. This is a great theme to use along with Helpie to build your Knowledge Base website.

PROS:

Built for Visual Composer:
The7 theme prides itself on its seamless and complete integration with Visual Composer and Ultimate addons. The theme’s various widgets are coded to be modular and completely customizable using Visual Composer.

750+ Theme Options:
The7 WordPress theme is one of the most customizable themes in the market with over 750 theme options. These options cover everything from Skins, Branding, Typography, Top Bar & Header, Page Titles, Sidebar, Footer & Bottom Bar, Buttons, Post Types, Woocommerce, Archives, Widget Areas, Import/Export Options, etc. The complete set of options is very exhaustive and gives you complete control over your website.

Design Wizard & Demos:
The7 theme has still more to offer, with the Design Wizard, you can setup boutique-quality designs for your website is a flash.

You also get over 30+ demo sites which you can immediately recreate with their setup files.

Premium plugins worth over $100 included:
The theme comes with premium plugins that we love. Some of the included plugins are Visual Composer Profession version, Revolution Slider plugin, Layer Slider, Go Pricing tables, Ultimate Addons for Visual Composer and the Convert plugin. These plugins alone might cost you over a hundred bucks if bought separately. That’s a great deal to get on top of a world-class WordPress theme for $39.

Bridge Theme:

 

bridge-wordpress-theme

The Bridge WordPress Theme is a multi-purpose theme for creatives by QODE, sold exclusively on ThemeForest. It’s has a clean design and sleek parallax animations that could make your website come off genuinely modern. It could be a little on the heavier side but not too much considering the smooth animations you get. The bridge is a great theme to complement Helpie if you sell technology or fashion products.

PROS:

Qode Slider:
The Qode Slider is a slider made just for Qode’s Bridge theme. Qode Slider is a perfect partner for the Bridge theme, more so than the other slider plugins out there. Qode Image/Video slider works exceptionally well.

Fully Customizable Headers:
The Bridge theme comes with a fully customizable headers feature that lets you choose from over 10+ header types. You can also customize the styles, layout, typography, skins, color, etc. If you are particular about how your header looks, Bridge is your theme.

With Bridge, you can also customize your title area and the mega menu. There are compelling features to let you add images, parallax, zoom effects and similar actions to your title area. Bridge theme has options to customize your mega menu for different screen sizes. You can change any style property for your mega menu with Bridge’s inbuilt features.

There are also more menu options to choose from; Left menu options and even full-screen menu options that give your control over your navigation and give your website a very distinguished look. It would appear as if your website is custom made and there would be no sign of a theme used on your website.

Shopkeeper:

 

shopkeeper-wordpress-theme

 

 

As you might have guessed, Shopkeeper is primarily a WordPress theme for your online stores. And over 18,000 people have chosen Shopkeeper as their theme of choice. With the Shopkeeper eCommerce Theme, you get a modern, minimal theme with most templates and functionality focussed on helping you build an online store.

PROS:

Product Layouts:

Shopkeeper’s strong focus on shopkeeping shows through its efforts on the template designs for the product page. It has over 4 template layouts for the product page. The designs work great for different types of products you might have on your online store.

Super flexible shopping layout:
With this theme, you can customize the shop archive’s grid with the inbuilt tools. Also since its very well integrated with Woocommerce, you can customize the product layouts in many ways. Shopkeeper also comes with a powerful filtering and sorting option set that sits comfortably in a sidebar.

The theme also comes with three types of loading which are classic pagination, infinite scroll loading and loading by load more button.

The product templates also have lightbox features for your products to help you see more without going to a particular product page.

Blog about your products:
Shopkeeper theme has three beautifully design blog layouts that complement the products layout and is ideal for you to blog about your products for your customers.

Catalog mode:
Some people choose to showcase your products on your website without selling them there. If you are one of them, you have your theme. Shopkeeper’s catalog mode lets you showcase your products without the purchase option, shopping cart or the payment gateways.

Kalium:

 

kalium-wordpress-theme

 

Kalium is a creative theme for professionals. This is a highly sort after theme by creatives and creative e-commerce website owners, especially of the fashion genre. Kalium is a fond product of Laborator, who have been selling in Themeforest since 2009. The folks from team Laborator like to name their products after elements of the periodic table with products like Kalium, Aurum, Xenon, Oxygen, Calcium, Neon, Zinc, etc. Apart from Kalium, I also recommend looking into Aurum, their minimalistic Woocommerce theme.

PROS:

Font Management Library:
One thing that sets Kalium theme apart from many top WordPress themes is its Font Management Library. Here’s what it has to offer:

  1. Google Fonts support with over 800 fonts available, updated regularly
  2. Typekit fonts support
  3. Font Squirrel support with over 750 fonts, updated regularly
  4. Premium fonts including Function Pro font family worth $149 with no extra charge
  5. You can even upload your own font

Header Types:
Your website’s header is a crucial part of its identity, and hence Kalium gives you a plethora of header types to choose from. Some header options include:

  • Minimal
  • Classic
  • Fullscreen ( left, center, right and inline )
  • Top Menu
  • Sidebar ( right, left )

30+ Layouts:
With over 30 layouts for projects and portfolio hand-crafted for creatives, you are sure to enjoy the varied choices you have. If you ever get more and want your own, you can build your own layout with the integrated Visual Composer support.

Awards:
You will be delighted to know that Kalium has been prized or nominated for top web design awards including Awwwards, CSSWinner, WeLoveWP, CSSAwards, CSSReel, CSSFox, etc.

Storefront:

storefront-wordpress-theme Continue reading…


Helpie1.2.5 Most Advanced Knowledge Base Plugin

On our constant Endeavor to make Helpie better and solve more problems we released Helpie1.2.5 on CodeCanyon. We discuss the major highlights of this release below, run along and you will not be disappointed.

1. Automatic Table of Contents

Let us say you are writing an Article called Automatic TOC, the moment you write a subtitle with tag h1(Select the sub-title and from the drop-down on the top left corner of the editor and select any heading name from the drop-down). This will help Helpie understand that the text is a Sub-title and it is automatically added as a subtitle in the TOC on the front-end.

TOC

 

TOC

Now see automatic TOC appear on the Front-end:

TOC on Front-end

2. New Welcome Area Styling Features

Helpie1.2.5 has a lot of new styling features for the Hero section, it helps you promote your brand and gels in with the overall brand you are building so well, you would be delighted.

You could tweak the Welcome Area(Hero) Styling from Dashboard Helpdesk -> Helpie Settings -> Styles -> Style Settings. You can also add a background image from the “Welcome area background style” drop down.

Welcome area styling

3. Knowledgebase stats module

You can turn on Knowledge base stats that show the number of articles, number of Contributors and the total number of topics in the Knowledgebase.

Stats module on main page

 

Turn on stats module by going to Helpdesk -> Helpie Settings -> Main Page -> Show Stats from the Dashboard.

Stats module

 

With all these features Helpie1.2.5 integrates so well with your website that you would forget it is a plugin. It also makes navigation easy and clearer with Automatic Table Of Contents. The stats module lets the data speak all the hard work that you have put into building a wonderful Knowledgebase. Try out Helpie 1.2.5 demo.

For any assistance, queries or feature suggestions please write to support@pauple.com.