knowledge-management

Pros and Cons of a WordPress Knowledge Base

10 min read
Jan 19, 2023
a laptop with a coding tool software open

A WordPress knowledge base provides a great way to easily deliver information to your customers in an efficient way. It allows you to respond quickly and effectively to inquiries, helping them make the most of your products and services. You can create content on a variety of topics and make it easily searchable for users via simple keywords or excerpts. Plus, having all of this customized content available in one place makes it easier for you to keep customer service materials up to date without having to write from scratch each time. The possibilities are endless, so consider using a WordPress knowledge base if you're looking for a modern customer support solution that meets the needs of both your business and your customers!

Benefits of using a Wordpress knowledge base

WordPress is one of the most dynamic content management systems on the web today, so it's no wonder that they're ideal for creating a functional knowledge base. With its user-friendly interface and variety of tools, WordPress allows users to craft custom knowledge bases in order to store information and make it easily accessible for team members. Moreover, it's great for building automated processes for gathering data and accessing help documentation. By investing in WordPress as your content platform, you can save time and money while ensuring everyone on your team has the information they need at their fingertips. WordPress offers a comprehensive knowledge base solution that can fit any size organization or project.

Customization

With WordPress being open-source, the possibilities of customizing your knowledge base are almost endless. It also means you get access to source code and a huge range of quality WordPress developers who can implement any changes you need. This means whatever design or added functionality you’re looking to introduce, this is very achievable with WordPress. However, it’s important to be mindful of 'feature creep'. This occurs when additional features keep getting added along the way and your knowledge base ends up with too many elements that can actually negatively affect user experience. With a little care and attention not only is creating a custom knowledge base easy, it can be done without compromising on user experience.

Pricing

When it comes to setting up a knowledge base, it’s hard to beat WordPress. It’s relatively cheap and there are plenty of plugins and themes available to help you get started and build a basic system quickly. While WordPress itself is free, you'll need to pay for hosting ($10-30/month), domain name ($10/year), theme ($150) and plugin ($120). All in all, that's about $300 if you don't plan on modifying the code too much. Of course, if you do want to make some changes, development costs can add up fast!

When it comes to the cost of creating software solutions, the obvious first port of call is often a SaaS-based service. After all, it's usually cheaper than building from scratch and sometimes even involves no upfront costs at all. However, if you're looking for something highly customized with functionality outside the scope of the standard offering, you may be tempted to think about opting for a combination of premium extensions and development work. While on paper this seems like a reasonable approach, it could actually end up costing you more in the long run. The additional components and tinkering required can quickly add up to much higher bills than are typically associated with SaaS-based services.

Hosting

With WordPress, hosting your own knowledge base has never been easier. When you host your content yourself, you're making a statement that security and data privacy should be prioritized within your business. You can rest assured knowing no one else is going to capitalize on or misuse the information stored on your platform without your permission. Plus, with a self-hosted solution, it makes sure that all updates are approved by you before making any changes to your portal. With WordPress at the helm of your knowledge base, you'll finally have an extra layer of control over who accesses what information.

Easy set-up

WordPress is an incredibly powerful and convenient platform for businesses of all sizes. Whether you already have an existing WordPress site or are just getting started, you'll benefit from its user-friendly interface and vast wordpress knowledge base. The intuitive dashboard makes it simple to manage content while there are also plenty of plugins that can help with technical aspects without having to retain staff. Plus, the amount of tutorials and tips out there mean that new users will have no trouble navigating the system. So why not take advantage of what WordPress has to offer?

Theme or plugin

Building a Wordpress knowledge base requires more than posting standard wordpress posts - that's where themes and plugins come in. These extensions will help you create a comprehensive and user friendly knowledge base, but you'll get different results with each forte of help. If you've already got an existing Wordpress website running, then using a plugin is likely the best choice because it will integrate seamlessly with your wordpress install. Whatever route you take, getting creative types of additional wordpress help can bring you closer to the knowledge base of your dreams!

If you're serious about creating a comprehensive wordpress knowledge base, you will probably want to take a different approach from using a plugin or theme. Plugins are great for quick simple setups that don't require customization but custom design and theming work can help give your wordpress knowledge base a more professional and consistent feel. On the other hand, themes are equipped with all the design elements your wordpress knowledge base will ever need but requires using an additional wordpress installation in most cases. Both plugins and themes have their assets so it's important to consider each when deciding on how to create your wordpress knowledge base. If you're not sure of where to start, there are several plugins and themes available that might suit your needs.

Negatives of a Wordpress knowledge base

WordPress is an incredibly powerful platform for creating a knowledge base, especially when it comes to things like customizing your store, optimizing for search engines, and controlling user access. However, there are still some drawbacks that need to be taken into account when weighing up the pros and cons of using WordPress for this purpose.

Slow page speed

Slow loading times can be an absolute killer for your WordPress knowledge base. With each plugin you add to your site, you run the risk of slowing down the performance of it. This is because they often require additional CSS and JavaScript files to load on the page, making it difficult for users to access the information they need. What’s worse is that this can have a major affect on your bounce rate since angry customers will give up if the page takes too long to show up on their screens - and that’s something we definitely want to avoid!

Potential for vulnerability

It's so important to pay attention to the quality of wordpress plugins you're using, otherwise you risk putting your website at risk from bad actors. Believe it or not, 54% of identified wordpress vulnerabilities are a result of plugins - so take extra caution when installing them on your site. That said, knowledge base plugins from reputable sources generally won't cause as much harm and can be safely used without worrying too much about security implications. Bottom line - simply make sure you're aware of what wordpress plugins you're installing and their source.

Technical knowledge

WordPress is an amazing platform with lots of different ways to customize it, but if you don't have knowledge or skills in CSS you might find yourself at a disadvantage. If your wordpress site doesn't incorporate the right wordpress knowledge base, then it's not going to look quite as professional as it should. This is why it's important to have a good grasp of CSS coding (or pay a developer who does) - so that you can make sure your wordpress site looks exactly the way you want it to and stands out from the crowd!

Lack of proper customer support

Using a wordpress knowledge base for customer service can be useful to find solutions for your problems but depending on the company, the help may come in the form of emails or forums. That means you could go days without getting any sort of resolution. Furthermore, if the issue turns out to not be a bug within the software itself, you’re now in charge of figuring it out—even if it requires technical knowledge. That’s why many are choosing SaaS solutions as they offer live support that you can trust and instant solutions for your queries. Plus, good software companies take extra steps like introducing new features and updates that keep your environment safe and reliable.

Branding takes time

Although free wordpress plugins don't cost anything, they may not exactly fit in with your site's design and branding. It might be difficult to find a wordpress knowledge base that can tell you how to switch up the code to make your plugin look more professional or represent your brand properly. Before you take the plunge, factor in the time and any other resources it will take for any modification of a free plugin, as pay-to-use SaaS solutions could have a lower cost of ownership.

Lack of basic knowledge base features

When it comes to creating a wordpress knowledge base, you shouldn't settle for anything short of the essentials. This includes powerful search functionality, a simple and intuitive backend, smart categorization, easy authoring and formatting, analytics and reporting, easy integration with existing software, and professional customization. These essential features are necessary if you want to make sure your knowledge base is functional. Failing to include them could mean you have a sub-par product that won’t deliver the results you’d expect. Ultimately, it pays off to take the time and choose the right plugin or theme that covers all of these features.

Is there a better solution?

Choosing a knowledge base SaaS provider as an alternative to WordPress may be a better option for users who need a functional platform but don’t want the hassle of setting up wordpress themes or plugins. This route is much easier and usually has less of an upfront cost, not to mention saving users time by avoiding complicated set-ups.

With this sort of software, you'll get a tailored solution designed specifically for your needs, with no bloating or useless fluff- just a fully top-notch professional knowledge base catered to your company's needs. Not only will it look and feel great, but it’ll also make the entire process much faster and smoother.

If the level of control when it comes to publishing and organization is important for you, then SaaS workflow systems might just be your best bet. Unlike wordpress solutions, most of them have an approvals process which makes managing a team and publishing much more efficient. Not to mention that you can work with multiple versions of the same article within the same editor. 

To get the most out of your investment in a knowledge base, it’s hugely important to be able to measure how it’s performing. That’s why it pays to go with high-quality SaaS solutions - they provide invaluable insight into analytics that really let you dig into what your impact is. And if that wasn’t enough of an incentive, solid analytics help you hone and improve your knowledge base over time. You can finetune the articles so that users are getting the assistance they need, and use data to develop content tailored specifically to their needs.