In today’s fast-paced world, people want information and they want it immediately. That means they’ll no longer accept waiting on hold to speak to a customer representative. They want answers to their questions fast. And without your interaction, if possible.
Self-service is by far the preferred means of support, with a resounding 79 percent of all customers opting for it over any other method.
In the face of such overwhelming data, you would think that having a company knowledge base would be a no-brainer.
But there are still plenty of small-to-medium-sized businesses that don’t have a knowledge base yet. And worse still? They don’t think they need one, or keep finding reasons to delay.
Top Reasons for Not Having Company Knowledge Base
Here you’ll find the top five excuses companies make for not having a knowledge base (and what we have to say about it).
1. They Don’t Have Time to Create One
As a business owner, marketing manager, or CIO, we know your time is precious. You are well aware of the fact that you need a knowledge base for your software. Your customers are probably asking for it. Even your competition is boasting a complete and updated self-service solution.
You know all this but… you just don’t have time in your busy day to start looking for the right knowledge base software provider. Let alone creating piles of documents and articles to fill it and keep it constantly updated.
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Here’s the deal, though. Your knowledge base is a living, breathing asset. While you’ll need to populate it in the beginning with a certain amount of information, you don’t have to write thousands of educational guides all at once. You can develop it over time. As the amount of knowledge inside grows, so does its value.
Not only will you take the stress of your time-pressed support staff, but you’ll also lighten the load for your marketing team. Your knowledge base not only gives customers fast help when and how they want it; it’s great for your SEO efforts as well.
You’ll have the opportunity to populate it with keyword-rich text that not only provides efficient and fast customer service but improves your SERP ranking as well.
Here is an another thing
You don’t have to do it alone. When you choose a knowledge base that offers collaboration opportunities and an uncompromised authoring experience, you won’t have to spend hours and hours updating an obnoxious system.
Adding new material is fast and easy, and can be done by any member of the team with login information.
When you pick the right knowledge base software, you can work directly on a clean and distraction-free screen, upload images and videos with ease, and never worry about losing your work, as it will all be backed up in the cloud.
And if you’re wondering where you’ll get the ideas from to create helpful articles for your knowledge base, ask your customers! As daily users of your service, they will be the first people to comment and let you know what they’re looking for.
When your knowledge base allows for user feedback and collaboration, you naturally generate topic ideas. You can also get a sense of the types of articles that are useful and the ones you can remove.
There’s nothing more valuable than listening to customers and taking their feedback on board.
2. They Already Provide Outstanding Customer Service
A lot of companies are proud of their customer service. They may even list it as one of their USPs in a competitive market in which offshoring has led to a slump in customer satisfaction.
So, if you’re proud of your excellent customer service, you should be. A good service representative is worth his or her weight in gold.
But, here’s the thing. Customers call a 0800 number when they’re frustrated. They probably haven’t been able to find the answers they need online and want to talk to a live person to get the situation resolved.
If they’re calling you because they can’t find the information they seek on your website, you’ve fallen at the first hurdle.
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Excellent customer service today should be measured in how few customers call you — not how many. Particularly in the SaaS industry, where customers want to get on with their work and figure out how to use the software without having to go through a lengthy learning curve.
Remember the stat from before? 79 percent of customers prefer self-service and don’t want to talk to you! Millennials (and Gen-Z, in particular) are an unsociable bunch who really prefer finding information on their smartphones or computers than speaking to a live person.
So, you need to offer them a knowledge base and cut out having a painful conversation. Add a super fast search engine, allow them to find what they’re looking for easily, and let them help themselves.
Your customer satisfaction rating can only go up with a knowledge base; not the other way around.
3. They Already Have Training Materials
A lot of companies erroneously believe that because they have a few PDFs and a website tutorial or two, they don’t need any further training materials.
But whether it comes to your customers or your employees, a knowledge base is a valuable tool. It’s a chance for you to consolidate all your training materials in one place.
Rather than having several updated (or outdated) versions of a PDF, Excel, or PowerPoint doing the rounds, you can keep all your documents in the same place and ensure that there is just one updated version.
This reduces time spent on onboarding new clients and also for training recent hires. Rather than taking time out of their day to dedicate to training, your line managers and supervisors can continue with their work, while your employees find the answers they seek from your internal knowledge base.
And by the way. Your employees may be expected to keep a version of their obligations, duties, and tutorials on file; but don’t expect your customers too!
Just because you sent out a lengthy and painstakingly crafted email, newsletter, or training handbook last month, doesn’t mean they will keep it.
Having a knowledge base that they can bookmark in their browser is so much more convenient.
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Not only do customers prefer helping themselves, but a report on the global state of multichannel customer service published by Microsoft found that as many as 90 percent of consumers actually expect you to have a self-service portal or knowledge base of some kind.
Let’s think about that for a minute. If you don’t have a knowledge base, you’re not meeting the expectations of 9 out of 10 of your customers. Yikes!
4. They Like Their Existing Collaboration Tools
Not everybody welcomes the change. In fact, despite centuries of evolution, mankind is still highly resistant to it.
Most people assume that change of some kind means more work, loss of control, uncertainty, or threat.
But whether your company is addicted to Slack, Asana, Skype, your own intranet, or Messenger, the point here is the same:
When you add the right knowledge base for your company, you add value to your company, instead of taking it away.
You will reduce the amount of time spent collaborating on existing channels and free up your team’s time to get more work done.
A knowledge base that can provide the answer, rather than a lengthy email trail or chat channel will dramatically streamline your working processes.
Your customers and team alike will benefit through centralised information, in which all your important company details stored. This can include everything from your refund policy to your VAT number.
Your operating costs will decrease and your productivity improve. That means a better experience all round – for customers, employees, and you, as a business owner.
5. It’s Too Time-Consuming to Update
This is another excuse we hear often when it comes to companies’ reasons for not having a knowledge base.
They’re concerned about how much time they will have to take to keep their knowledge base updated.
While it’s true that running a website and your company’s online profile can be a lot to manage, a knowledge base can help you reduce the number of daily tasks.
When you choose the best knowledge base software for your company, you’ll give your customers the chance to serve themselves, which means they will be less likely to contact you through other means.
Fewer phones ringing. Less customer support questions on your social channels and fewer man hours spent all round.
And when you spread the task company-wide and ask for help from your customers, your knowledge base pretty much updates itself!
If your organization is still making excuses for not having a company knowledge base software, now the time has come to rethink.
When you find the right knowledge base software provider to work with, the integration process will be seamless.
It is easy to create and update articles easily, and the time you put in at the beginning will be a drop in the ocean compared to the time you’ll save.
So, think about your business growth in the long run. To stay competitive, you have to give your customers what they want. And what they want is to help themselves.
And in the process of letting them have it all, you get a better deal too! Consolidated information, lower operating costs, improved SEO and customer service, and a productive and better-educated team. Who could ask for more?
Did you find this article useful? Have you ever found yourself bringing up similar excuses? Share your thoughts on the topic using the comments section below.
If you’ve run out of excuses, it’s time to put your foot down and start searching for the best knowledge base software. And luckily, you’re in the right place! Document360 gives you everything you need to get started right away. Take us for a free test drive today!