Having great content doesn't mean much if it’s hidden beneath confusing menus or buried beneath layers and layers of sub-categories. Like we laid out in this article about self-service support, if the greatest help content is written, but no customers are able to read it, does it even exist?
At Elevio we’ve tried a few different ways of structuring our content, and here I’ll lay out a few things we found so that you can avoid the growing pains we went through.
Please note, this article exists in tandem with our piece on structuring articles, which you can find here.
Have a category just for beginners to your product.
Ours is called “Start Here”, doesn’t get more literal than that. If someone wants to learn all about your product, don’t make it difficult for them. This content should guide your user around your product in a brief and slightly more ‘salesy’ way than the other ‘how-to’ content you have, and any new users should be directed right here.
Think of it as a nice add-on to your landing pages, with all the info you couldn't fit. As an added tip, feel free to link to those 'how-to' pages from these articles to tie everything in nicely.
Sorting and titling your content
Users should know exactly where to go at a glance when viewing your content. When looking through knowledge, users will be looking for keywords that best relate to what they need, and it’s up to you to make sure those keywords are easy to spot, both in article and category titles.
The best way to think about this is through the SEO lens. Use short, succinct titles. Make sure titles are clear. Make sure relevant categories and sub-categories are grouped together. In general, pretend you're a user seeing things for the first time. Put things where you'd expect to see them, and word them in what would help you as a first time user best navigate the content.
Create easy to find tips and tricks docs for quick-fixes
Lots of little tips, tricks, and solutions always come up, but don’t seem quite big enough for their own article? Having a catch all article for all these types of things in most categories is a good idea not only as a starter for people looking to learn, but also for users who might need a little leg up with some help when looking to improve.
These can be troubleshooting articles, or just small things that make life easier, but the main thing to avoid is to litter content with tons of small little articles that make more substantial articles harder to find.
Separately, these three things but not seem huge, but piece by piece, all of them will work together to make your categories easier to navigate. Of course, once a user finds the article, they should be able to navigate that just as easily.