A public help center enables businesses to engage with their customers and build firm relationships with them. Help Centers are a large part of customer service, and the revenue generated by the organization is very much contingent on their customer support/help center. Help center design is also an important attribute in customer support as eye-catching design and simple navigation grabs the attention of your future clients and builds confidence through its general view and usability.
The equation is simple: you please the customer, and the customer returns the favor!
Finding a starting point when creating a help center or redesigning your existing one might be a challenge. To that end, read on to learn about the essentials of designing a help center and the ten help center designs to get some inspiration.
Help Center Design Essentials and Designs to Get You Inspired
Placing a search bar at the top of the help page
This is not only a quick way to find the information you are looking for, but it also allows collecting search queries to create new content and optimizing existing content so that it is more relevant. Help centers like Etsy, Invison, Asana, and Pinterest are splendid platforms that boast this feature.
Etsy Help Center
Etsy Help Center's look perfectly complements the style of their main website. It has a neat and simple layout that allows for easy and swift navigation, a search bar, and several featured articles at the top of the page. You can also get assistance and support via Etsy's community forums. Here are some other things their implementation got right:
- The first thing you see is a search bar;
- Separate categories for different searches (i.e one of sale and one for shopping);
- The result page isn’t endless and has clear pages, making it more digestible on smaller-screen devices;
- The cookie notification isn’t obtrusive and does not block the search bar.
Etsy help center design
Rakuten Kobo or simply Kobo, is a seller of e-books, audiobooks, e-readers and tablet computers. It has an awesome designed help center which is even more attractive than a homepage or landing pages. Polygonal shapes and bright colors make it look stylish, and eye-catching. Despite the fine print, texts are pretty good for understanding. Also, it has:
- intuitive navigation where search bar is situated on the top of the page;
- tabs with popular and recent articles;
- structured articles and FAQs with high readability.
Rakuten Kobo Help Center Design
Pinterest Help Center
The standout feature of Pinterest's help center is that it has dedicated sections for businesses and regular users. The layout is arranged in a pinboard style, meaning you can get useful tips, articles, and guides at the bottom of the page. All of the links are on the same page, so you need not scroll up and down on the page aimlessly! It also features a search bar at the top of the page to make things even easier for the user.
Pinterest help center design
- The help center is presented in the users native language automatically, including the search bar message;
- General and Business queries are separated and each have their own categories and search results;
- An easy way to access the main website without losing access to the search bar.
Pinterest help center design
Asana Support Page
Asana uses a different approach for their Support page compared to most of the other Help Centers. They ask you (the user) what your specific problem is instead of tossing copious amounts of potentially relevant articles at you. You can also find links to several other helpful resources such as the academy, guides, forums, and so on. There is also a search bar if you need to search for specific support articles. We suggest that you borrow from Asana the following design decisions:
- Navigational cards near the search bar namely, “I want to learn”, “I’m having trouble with”, and “I’d like to upgrade” help divide the knowledge bases;
- Aforementioned cards are used to fill out queries if describing the problem seems difficult all while still providing easy access to the search bar;
- Search results highlight keywords and are sorted into categories to avoid unnecessary scouting, and again, the bar remains accessible.
Asana help center design
Organizing Questions Categorically and Highlights Frequent Questions and Problems
When the questions are organized categorically, the user can find the necessary support article faster.
If you are designing a help center, you should highlight frequent questions and problems first. These are the questions and requests customers face the most and it only makes sense to showcase them at the top of the page. The PayPal help center is a prime example of a platform that lists all the common questions categorically that users usually ask.
PayPal Help Center
PayPal is a very popular online payment system that is used by businesses and individuals alike to make swift financial operations. Their help page contributes towards the company's massive popularity as it features a dedicated help section, a list of common questions, and other sought after info users can find without extra efforts. Furthermore, you can get additional help in other ways too. The contact customer support option, Community Forum, and the Resolution Center, all help solve customer issues.
Other notable design features worth stealing:
- The home page has a category tab that has its own questions you can see without following a separate link, therefore avoid opening a new tab;
- By scrolling further, the user is presented with additional ways they can get support (i.e a tax center, a resolution hub, and community forum);
- A dedicated software developer page you can access from the header.
PayPal help center design
Providing a Way to Contact Customer Support
Unfortunately, customers are often not able to find a solution to their problems. And, in this case, they should easily find a way to call, email, or tweet customer support. The best help centers that provide the option of contacting customer support include:
InVision excels at creating software for designers. When it comes to their help center design, their approach is simple yet creative at the same time. At the top of the page, you Contact support button to easy contact with agents, and then you have the answers to commonly asked questions. All useful information is accordingly accompanied by striking visuals that draw attention. Also, they focused on visually appealing chat design to emphasize their client-oriented approach.
Invision help center design
GiffGaff Help Page
The GiffGaff Help Page boasts a splendid design and layout, which is aesthetically appealing. Furthermore, the help center page features an option to ask the community to help users themselves. It also provides a way to reach out to a support agent if you seek a more personalized response to your query.
Giffgaff help center design
Moreover, the platform allows the users to easily navigate their way around and go to any article/section they want.
Giffgaff help center design
Help Scout prioritizes its customer service over everything else. Their help center is created with the customer experience in mind. The design is visually and functionally appealing, and all the articles are sorted according to the products.
Help Scout help center design
Moreover, if you delve deeper into the content, you will observe that Help Scout’s help center pays a great deal of attention to text formatting and visual enrichment. All of their pieces are easy to absorb.
Help Scout help center design
Letting the Help Center be an Extension of Your Brand
Adjusting the colors, adding illustrations that users see across the main website sure helps to make the help center feel more familiar. Here are some of the help centers that reflect and promote the brand of the company.
Cards Against Humanity Help Center
Although the design of this store’s help center is pretty straightforward and basic, all the questions are very well sorted into categories. What this means is that you do not have to scroll needlessly to find the information you are looking for. This help center is an ideal example of how you can use your company’s help center to promote your brand in a way that does not focus on visual designs.
Cards Against Humanity help center design
The Dropbox help page boasts a very captivating design that genuinely reflects the brand of the company. The content provided on their help page is not just run-of-the-mill help center content.
Dropbox help center design
On this platform, you will also find several informative guides and an array of video tutorials for those who seek visual assistance with their queries/concerns.
Dropbox help center design
Figma Help Center
Very much similar to InVision, Figma takes a very creative and artistic approach to how to layout their help center. Each category has its own icon, which reflects the style of the company’s brand. Their help center is definitely a great extension of their brand!
Figma help center design
Accounting for Demographic Support
For many international businesses, handling multilingual requests poses great difficulty. However, with the right approach, companies can alleviate a lot of sorting work from support staff simply by allowing the center to appear in the proper language. Here’s a notable example.
Pinterest Help Center
One of the key advantages of Pinterest is that it is available in just about any language. What makes this addition so good is that it allows users to ask questions in their native language, making the query more detailed, more accurate, therefore, making your support staff work less involved.
Pinterest help center
Eventbrite Help Center
While it doesn’t switch automatically like Pinterest Help Center, Eventbrite allows you to pick in what language to display information simply by navigating to the corner. Furthermore, the content displayed is adapted to the language, meaning that it doesn’t require extra scrolling or use of a magnifying feature of your browser.
Eventbrite help center
Humanization of Your Support Center
For many customers, a help center is something that usually involves a chatbot, an AI support assistant, or other insentient interactions. Part of it is that often, support agents sound like robots due to them following instructions, and part of it is that all pop-up messages look the same. Here are examples you can use to transform your help center:
Olark Help Center
Instead of placing a fancy banner with drawn images, the company decided to place a photo of their entire support team. This is a very personal touch that’ll further confirm that your request will be handled by real people and not by a machine learning algorithm.
Olark help center
Vimeo Support Center
Another great example of humanizing your help center comes from Vimeo. However, the approach is a tad different this time in that they have a proper banner and a picture of their team, it's just that it is on the side of the page. You still get the personal touch and don’t need to compromise on the banner image. Furthermore, being a video streaming platform, the platform has a lot of videos with the aforementioned support staff.
Vimeo support center
Authenticating Users and Cases
Often, user requests and posts clutter support pages when they either don’t have a specific question or a specific solution. This makes info search difficult for others. However, this can elegantly be addressed with an account system. Here’s an example of how you can set up your help center page.
Square Help Center
Prior to any user can submit a question, a registration pop-up appears. However, unlike other services where you have to make an account before posting, you can create a draft. This doesn’t pose a block beforehand and allows the user to express their concerns first, and worry about registration later.
Square help center
Bonus! Aarhus theme from GrowthDot
GrowthDot team designed a custom help center theme for Zendesk specifically. It takes into consideration all the recommendations mentioned above as well as suits all Zendesk features and details. So, be sure to find any element needed for a great help center design. That's because the Aarhus theme includes a visible header, sidebar navigation, categories with customizable icons, "Prev"/"Next" buttons, and many more. The theme is accessible on any device and enables extra formatting elements such as tables of contents, callout blocks, internal tabs, and other options to help you design your help center content in the way you want.
We also create custom themes for Zendesk Guide and offer great discounts. Check out our Zendesk Theme Discounts page to learn how you can pay less for a custom help center design.
Unfamiliar to Zendesk? Read a detailed article to find out more: 'What is Zendesk? What is its purpose?'
Also, our team will gladly add a personal touch of your company, so feel free to contact us for branding and customization options for your Zendesk Knowledge Base!
Aarhus theme for help center
This article will surely serve as a useful guide to help you to draw inspiration from various help centers and design a custom Zendesk theme.
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