How to Customize Zendesk Help Centers

Dimitris Glezos
October 14, 2016
5 min read

You likely already know (or are quickly finding out) that providing an excellent product is no longer enough to satisfy customers in today’s competitive marketplace. According to the 2015 Global State of Multichannel Customer Service Report, 90 percent of consumers expect businesses to have an online self-service help center where they can find additional product or service information, answers to commonly asked questions, how-to articles, and even video content.

That said, you’re probably reading this for one of two reasons:

  1. You already have a Zendesk help center (also referred to as a knowledge base) but are looking for new ways to extend its reach
  2. You know it’s time to set up Zendesk but aren’t exactly sure about the customization options – and might be wondering why they’re so important

The good news? Whether you have a Zendesk help center already or not, you know that it’s a simple way to provide your customers easy-to-access information on-demand. What you might not realize yet is the value derived by designing a robust, customized Zendesk help center using themes, categories, and localized translations – topics we’ll tackle in this post!

Match Zendesk knowledge base themes to your brand

For customers to truly appreciate (and utilize) your help center content, they need to feel the same level of trust as they do when visiting other pages of your website. If your help center isn’t consistent with the rest of your website’s branding, users are less likely to trust the site and may choose to contact customer service through another more time-consuming method. Even worse, they may leave and go to a different site altogether.

To establish feelings of comfort and trust with your customers, you’ll want to take the time to customize the theme of your Zendesk knowledge base so that it feels like a natural extension of your company and brand. You can choose a preset theme and then customize things like colors and fonts. You can also add your logo, set your own favicon, and set preferences for how the help center will appear on smaller devices like cellphones.

Select Zendesk knowledge base categories and images best for your business

Defined categories and relevant images create a better, more engaged user experience by making your knowledge base easy to navigate and helping customers find the information they want quickly. Which categories you choose and whether or not the use of images is appropriate depends largely on the nature of your business and what you want your help center to achieve. To ensure a clear and organized help center, have clearly defined goals to guide users. Here are a couple examples:

If you’re trying to reduce the number of support tickets your business receives:

  • Use clear category headings
  • List common questions underneath
  • Provide a link or hyperlink the question to the answer

On the other hand, if you want to increase customer engagement:

  • Use images for a user-friendly page design
  • Highlight categories like webinars, videos, and tutorials  
  • Include support categories like FAQs or Troubleshooting if applicable

Creating a well-organized and visually appealing help center supports your valuable content by helping users help themselves. Why is this self-serve element important you might ask? A recent study by Aspect Software found that 75 percent of consumers prefer to solve an issue on their own without help from customer service, and 65 percent of customers who can solve an issue without live help hold a favorable opinion of the company. And in today’s competitive landscape, this type of positive customer experience is essential for creating repeat purchases, satisfied customers, and brand enthusiasts.

Don’t overlook the benefits of Zendesk knowledge base translation

Did you know that more than half of consumers will only purchase products from sites that provide information in their native language? If you have a website or product that serves customers around the globe, providing content in your customer’s native language doesn’t just facilitate the buying process, it helps to create successful users that truly understand the value of your offerings.

Translation, however, can be applied to non-traditional channels like Zendesk. Having a Zendesk help center that speaks the language of your multilingual customers ensures that users in your target locales can find, and more importantly, clearly understand any product or service information, making product adoption a smoother, easier, and more enjoyable process.

While translating your Zendesk may seem like a low priority in your expansion plans, companies have found that translating their Zendesk help center first, even before their main marketing website or mobile apps, leads to stronger relationships with international users and enhanced brand image and overall reputation. And if you’re not sure where to start when it comes to building a multilingual Zendesk, look no further than Transifex, a translation management platform. Zendesk seamlessly integrates with Transifex, enabling businesses to access professional and native speaking translators while implementing streamlined workflows that allow you to push help center content from your Zendesk to translators in Transifex, and then back to Zendesk for your global users to learn from.

Improve customer experience (and increase profitability) with a customized Zendesk help center

Did you know that companies that invest in optimizing customer experience see almost 20 percent more revenue growth than those that don’t? What’s better, they see almost 20 percent higher profits too.

Customer experience is quickly becoming the number one way to predict profitability and revenue growth, so customizing your Zendesk help center is a no-brainer. But as you prepare to move into new markets, keep one thing in mind. Users who can fully engage with your content are happy users; happy users become repeat users, and repeat users mean increased profitability.

Dimitris Glezos

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