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Customer Experience
October 25, 2023
xx min read

Is Your Help Content Doing Its Job?

Think back to a time when you were looking for product information, and you hit a roadblock. 

Where did you turn? Most likely, you sought out the company’s "Help" or "Support" section, hoping for some guidance. That's where help content shines its brightest, acting as a beacon for users in need.

But here's the catch: Not all help content is created equal. While its primary goal is to inform and guide, the true magic lies in its ability to do so effectively and intuitively. And with the evolving digital landscape, ensuring your help content is up to par is more crucial than ever.

In this guide, you’ll learn how to navigate help content through its depths. We'll help you understand its essence, spot signs of inefficiency, and harness tools like Component Content Management Systems to elevate your content game.

Quick Takeaways

  • 40% of customers prefer self-service over human interaction, making effective help content key to providing a positive user experience.
  • While all content has its value, help content stands out for its unique purpose of providing step-by-step guidance and addressing specific user problems. 
  • Clear indicators of ineffective help content include high bounce rates on help pages, an influx of customer support queries on topics already covered, negative feedback, and low user engagement with the content.
  • A Component Content Management System offers tools to improve help content, ensuring that it  remains relevant, user-friendly, and a valuable resource for the audience. 

Understanding Help Content

At its core, help content is the set of articles, guides, and FAQs that answer the "how-to" and "what-is" questions about a product or service. 

photo shows examples of Heretto’s help content on mobile device

While all content aims to inform, entertain, or inspire, help content has a special purpose. Its main job is to guide users, step by step, and solve specific problems they might be facing.

And, considering that 40% of customers prefer self-service over human interaction, ensuring effective help content also means providing a positive user experience. 

graphic shows that 40% of customers prefer self-service over human interaction

Signs Your Help Content Might Not Be Effective

How do you know if your help content is hitting the mark or missing it by a mile? Here are some telltale signs that it might be time for a content makeover:

  • High Bounce Rates. Users are landing on your help content and bouncing off quickly. This means they probably didn’t find what they were looking for.
  • Customer Support SOS. Your customer support team is getting flooded with questions about topics you've already covered in your help content.
  • Negative Feedback. Low ratings and negative feedback on help content is a clear sign that users aren’t finding your content useful. 
  • Low Engagement. If users aren’t visiting your help content at all, it might be buried too deep or poorly promoted. 

Methods to Assess Help Content Effectiveness

Understanding the effectiveness of your help content is the key to continuous improvement. Here’s how you can accurately gauge its performance: 

1. User Feedback

Direct feedback is invaluable. Incorporate surveys or feedback forms at the end of your articles. Simple questions like "Was this article helpful?" can provide significant insights.

2. Analytics Review

Explore your analytics. Metrics like page views, average time spent on the page, and user navigation patterns can indicate content effectiveness.

3. A/B Testing

Consider testing two versions of the same help article, each with different formats or visuals. This can help reveal which approach resonates more with your audience.

4. User Testing

icon shows 3 people representing user testing

Observing real users as they navigate your help content can offer direct insights into areas of improvement. Take note of where users might get confused or where they find clarity.

5. Collaborate with Support Teams

Regularly communicate with your customer support team. Their direct interactions with users can highlight recurring questions and potential content gaps.

6. Search Queries

Monitor the search terms users input within your help center. If certain topics are frequently searched, ensure they are easily accessible and clearly articulated.

How A Component Content Management System Can Enhance Help Content

A Component Content Management System (CCMS) isn’t just a fancy tool for big corporations; It can help any organization make serious improvements in their help content. A CCMS streamlines processes, enhances user experience, and ensures your content remains a valuable resource for your audience.

Here are some key benefits of using a CCMS to elevate your help content to new heights:

  • Structured Organization. A CCMS helps you neatly categorize and structure your content. This means users can navigate with ease, finding exactly what they need without the guesswork.
  • Effortless Updates. Products evolve, and so should your help content. With a CCMS, updating information or making revisions is easy, ensuring your content stays relevant and up-to-date.
  • Integrated Analytics. Many CCMS platforms come with built-in analytics tools. This means you can track user behavior, identify popular topics, and spot areas that might need a little extra attention.
  • Team Collaboration. Working on content shouldn't be a solo mission. A CCMS allows multiple team members to collaborate, review, and approve content, ensuring consistency and quality.
  • Search Functionality. A robust search feature in a CCMS ensures that users can quickly find the topics they're looking for, reducing frustration and enhancing their overall experience.
  • Personalized Experience. Advanced CCMSs can tailor content according to the four types of personalization. This allows you to deliver the most relevant help articles to users based on their needs.
Heretto’s graphic shows the four types of personalization

Best Practices for Creating Effective Help Content

Crafting top-notch help content is not only about answering questions, but also guiding users smoothly through their journey. According to a recent study, users place the most value on efficiency, convenience, and knowledgeable service. 

Here are some best practices to ensure your help content stands out and truly assists:

  • Clarity is Key. Write in a straightforward manner, and avoid using jargon or complex terms. 
  • Visual Aids. Incorporate screenshots, diagrams, and even short videos. A picture can often explain what words might struggle to convey.
  • Stay Updated. As your product or service evolves, so should your content. Regularly review and update your articles to reflect any changes.
  • Feedback Loop. Encourage users to provide feedback on your articles. This can offer insights into areas that might need more clarity or additional information.
  • Consistent Formatting. Use a consistent format across all help articles. This includes using similar headings, fonts, and structures. It makes the user experience predictable and comfortable.
  • Break It Down. Use bullet points, lists, and subheadings to break up the text. It makes the content more digestible and allows users to quickly find the information they're seeking.
  • Link to Related Content. If an article references a related topic, link to it. This provides users with a comprehensive understanding and reduces the need for them to search around.

By following these best practices, you'll be well on your way to creating help content that not only answers questions, but enhances the overall user experience.

Boost Your Help Content Today with Heretto

Navigating the world of help content can seem overwhelming, but with the right tools and strategies, it becomes a clear path guiding users to their desired answers.

Remember, it's not just about providing information, but rather creating a seamless, user-friendly experience. By embracing these insights and best practices, you're building trust, fostering loyalty, and ensuring that every user feels valued and understood. 

Ready to boost your help content? Heretto CCMS can help. Get started today by booking a demo, or learn more about Heretto.

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