Product Documentation is Boring? How to Make it Easy and Fun

Documenting a product is a tiring and boring task for developers or people who are having expertise of the product. One of the reason is that those people are good in creating or using the product but have less interest in writing the process again and again. That’s why either they hire people to put the documentation live or just write few steps for the sake of doing it. There is no need to explain how important it is to have a good product documentation for SEO and for receiving user feedback. Also it solves the purpose of resolving frequently asked or basic queries. So it becomes a necessity to have a documentation along with the product and people start doing it just to have one.

In this article, I will explain how to save time while documenting a product and also easily maintain it without losing the fun part.

What are the challenges in Product Documentation

  • Boring Wiki Like Platforms
  • Repetitive Answers
  • Frequent Changes in Documentation
  • Time Constraints
  • Text, Text and More Text

Platforms to Build Documentation

Well, there are many platforms to create and publish a product documentation but most of the platforms are like coded in 90’s or something. Front-end at least looks good but the back-end to publish the documentation is really boring and looks very old. Some people even prefer to have a static HTML page rather than using those platforms. Now a days few modern web applications are available to create documentation but you need to spend a recurring fee every month to create and host the knowledge base. What if the most popular CMS that you probably are already using for your site’s blog or running the eCommerce site on, can help you create and maintain the documentation as well? Yes, I am talking about WordPress CMS where you can install a WordPress Plugin Documentor and have a nice, user friendly and modern product documentation hosted on your own server.

Documentor allows you to add the existing posts or pages from your blog to the documentation. It saves time and also the repetitive effort.  One can easily go and edit the documentation, just like a post and even use the drag and drop feature to reorder the documentation.

documentor_panel

So finally using the power of the same platform that you are already using and publish a product documentation in no time.

Why to Type Again, If you have already answered?

As mentioned earlier, sometimes you need to write the same thing again and again in a documentation which makes it boring. If you have already published the same content as a blog post, writing that again as a part of documentation will make it boring. If you copy and paste the same content from the blog post, it may cause the duplicate content problem for SEO.

With Documentor WordPress plugin, you can add already published posts or pages to the documentation or have the same section multiple times. It uses the canonical URL and send people from documentation page to the blog post. In case there will be any change in that part of the documentation, you need to make the change only at one place and it will start reflecting on all places via reference. It saves a lot of time and effort.

Products Keep Changing and So does the Documentation

If you have developed a software, you need to keep releasing new versions with fixes or features. As the product changes, you need to update the documentation too. With Documentor WordPress plugin, it becomes very easy to make the changes. Use the same blogging dashboard and go to the edit section of Documentor. There you can open the editor (same TinyMCE WYSIWYG editor) and make changes. The product documentation will automatically starts showing the last edited date on front-end which helps the users to understand that this is an updated documentation.

Save Time in Documentation. Invest More in Product.

One should not invest more time in documenting a product but in creating a better one. To avoid making the product documentation a time consuming task, one should efficiently document the best part or certain FAQs. By allowing you to use a single platform for blog or website, Documentor saves a lot of time from learning a new platform altogether. It also allows you to generate the PDF version of the complete documentation with just one click. Time saved again.

Make Documentation Look Cool

Most of the old documentation platforms allows you to add text and images or sometimes a video. If you want to have Google Maps, Nice HTML5 Tables, Embed Tweets, Embed a Presentation etc. these old platforms will not allow to do so. But with WordPress, you use plugins such as WP Google Maps, Contact Form 7, TablePress and many more free plugins to embed such things inside the product documentation created using Documentor. As you get 5 different skins to choose from for your documentation, the front-side of the documentation will look very elegant, stylish and modern with Documentor.

This is how you can make product documentation an interesting task without paying much (or any recurring fee).

Sanjeev Mishra

An award winning serial entrepreneur running multiple online businesses. He co-founded Webfanzine Media, the parent company for WordPress products such as SliderVilla, Documentor, PurposeThemes. He regularly blogs on Internet Techies, WPOptimus and many other popular blogs. His love for WordPress started back in 2008 and till now has contributed in the development and release of 20+ WordPress plugins with 5,00,000+ downloads.