Technical writing of online Help and knowledge bases

Keep your customers happy with online Help that  provides the right answer to their questions, every time

 

UI text and Embedded Help

Online Web Help pages

Onboarding screens

Compiled CHM Help

Developing a product or application? Don’t worry if you don’t have the time or skills to do it in-house. Cherryleaf can write online Help, onboarding screens, embedded Help and/or a knowledge base, for your product or service. We have experience of working with companies both big and small.

We’ll create these for you, simply and efficiently, and within an agreed schedule and budget. This means you’ll keep your software project and costs on track.

Let’s start to solve your problem: use the “Contact Us” button below to tell us about your situation.

Our Help page writing services

Writing online (web) Help pages

By online Help pages, we mean Help that’s delivered as a set of HTML files. These can be in a knowledge base, a Help section, or linked to your support ticket system. This type of Help is used for Software as a Service, other web-based applications, and mobile apps. It can also be used for desktop applications.

Developing onboarding screens/Walkthroughs

Onboarding screens introduce the application to the user, and demonstrate what the product does. Cherryleaf can help you create your onboarding screens – getting the content and the design right for your product and your audience.

Writing UI text and Embedded Help

UI text and Embedded Help places the Help information in the application screens. The user doesn’t need to leave the current screen to find the answer to their questions. We write the Help in text or Markdown format, which is then compiled with the application code files.

Creating compiled CHM Help

Compiled Help is used for Windows applications. The Help page files are compressed and deployed in a binary format single file.

Creating printable versions

We can also create print versions in PDF, Word, or another printed form.

 

Client testimonials

We see an ongoing role for Cherryleaf as consultants who can help to get better documents out of the vast material we have added to the system. Very importantly, Cherryleaf were able to rapidly respond to our issues with the system and help us understand.

Dave Hughes, HCC Embedded CEO API documentation writing

I worked with Cherryleaf on a project for the European Community made up of a consortium of different companies and nationalities. Their communications skills were excellent and capacity to speak both fluent technical jargon and business English are truly superb.

John Fintan Galvin, IO1 Technical writing services

As an IT team, we had an array of support documentation for systems and services that we'd always struggled to have a consistent format, style and structure for. The course delivered by Ellis Pratt really clarified the best practices to use and answered many of the questions we had.

We were so satisfied with the service provided by Ellis that we contacted Cherryleaf to create an exemplary piece of documentation for one of our systems, with an aim to using the documentation as a template for our other services going forwards. Ginny Critcher was always punctual, polite and efficient in all her work. Where there were any doubts or suggestions, Ginny would provide insight into what the best approach would be in an eloquent and thoughtful manner.

Alan Oakden, MyScience Training

Cherryleaf is one of the best technical authoring houses in the business, and profoundly knowledgeable, professional and approachable. Highly recommended for anyone requiring top-notch documentation or training services.

Julian Maynard-Smith Technical writing services

 

Our approach

One source, many outputs

We often use a single sourcing and topic-based authoring approach. This means you can publish content to a range of different configurations and outputs. You can also provide a more personalised experience for the user.

Our work involves:
  • Making any existing content clearer and easier to use.
  • Writing new content for you, where it's missing.
  • Organising the content in ways that make it easy for people to find the information they need.
  • Setting up systems so that information isn't left to stagnate and get out of date. Depending on your needs, these systems can:
    • Deliver the content in different formats.
    • Enable you to re-use chunks of text in different publications, and in different contexts for users:
      • Subsets delivered for different outputs.
      • Personalised content for different job roles, location etc.
      • Create it once, and re-use it multiple times.
    • Automate the exchange of content with other systems, so others can use your content in their outputs.

Have a preferred authoring tool or working method?

We can use a writing process that suits your workflow and technologies.

Cherryleaf works with a wide range of authoring tools. We have close links with the leading Help tool vendors. For example: Adobe (makers of RoboHelp) and MadCap Software (makers of Flare). We also work with Markdown-based tools and Microsoft Word.

 

Useful information on creating great Help content for users

Your writing online Help questions answered

On an upcoming episode of the Cherryleaf Podcast, we’ll be answering the top 20 most popular questions on writing online Help using tools like MadCap Flare and Adobe RoboHelp.
You can submit your question via our contact form or record your question by voicemail, using the button below.

Selected posts about online Help and knowledge bases from the Cherryleaf Blog

The ROI of user documentation: you could break even if you avoided 3 support calls per week 

How online Help can save you money – 80% of the lifetime cost of software happens after the sale. Using typical costs for an average sized software application, figures suggest you could break even if you avoided 3 support calls per week.

How to create online Help topics that are editable by clients

Microsoft’s “No more robot speak” in action

Why you should write Help for your competitors’ products

Free guides – Technical writing

Cherryleaf’s online cost reduction calculator

Why the marketing funnel and technical writing are changing

There’s a new marketing funnel for software and other technology products. Today, many people tend to search for the solution to their problem on the Web and through Social Media before they buy a product or service, and a lot of them never even touch the product before buying it.

This means all of the information you provide, both pre- and post- sales, needs to provide the same consistent, high quality, experience to the user. What’s more, the subscription, “try before you buy”, sales model means users can stop being one of your paying customers in just a few days.

The search engines also love the type of information-rich content that these pages contain.

Getting customers to answer their own support questions

A video guide that looks at how to get customers to answer their own support questions.

Decision making guide: Do I need a Technical Author?

This decision guide helps you assess whether you need a Technical Author.

Online Help episodes from the Cherryleaf Podcast

What’s the deal about structured content?

Content can often seem like jelly – messy and hard to manage. In this presentation, we’ll look at whether you can reduce this messiness through structured writing. In this overview of the topic, we’ll explore what is structured writing, what it promises to give its adopters, the different standards, and the challenges that come with using structured writing.

If not DITA, then what?

We look at the pros and cons of using the DITA standard, and the alternatives.

Zendesk and Knowledge Centred Support

“Our boss wants us to consider the idea of merging our Help content and our “Knowledge base” which is like articles/support troubleshooting etc. Whether this is our content going into the knowledge base or vice versa, we’re not sure in terms of direction. Do you have any opinions on merging article-based content like this into a Help Authoring tool or Help content into a “normal” website like that?”

Docs Like Code

Interview with Anne Gentle, author of Docs Like Code and Product Manager at Cisco.

Every Page is Page One

Interview with Mark Baker, author of Every Page is Page One.

Unifying pre- and post- sales content

Should marketing and technical communications be unified?

 

Contact us

Need someone to write your online Help content?

Complete the contact form below. Don’t worry if you don’t know the answers to all of the questions.

We will contact you to discuss your situation and requirements.

You can always phone or email us, if you prefer.

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