In the previous article, we wrote how you can use WordPress as a Knowledge Base. In this article, we will compare and list the best WordPress Knowledge Base themes.
We know that creating a Knowledge Base website is a great way to provide help or extra information to your users, customers or employees. It will increase your customer satisfaction by providing your readers with answers they are looking for. It will also impact your SEO. By answering some pre-sale questions it may also help you to generate new leads. Or convert potential clients into customers.
Table of Contents
Before we start you should know that you can create your Knowledge Base by using any WordPress theme you like. It is much easier to create a perfectly working end product if you use a theme which was prepared for this purpose.
Many people focus on the visual layer and design too much. The case is that Knowledge Base specific functionality is even more important than how your Knowledge Base looks like. (but it’s an important factor too).
Having above in mind we decided to hand-pick the best collection of WordPress Knowledge Base Themes. We try to focus on the features that we think are important to achieve your goal. And we hope your goal is a user-friendly product that also ranks well in search engines. This is why our criteria include (but are not limited to):
- Design (How the page looks like from a user perspective)
- Knowledge Base specific features
- Theme specific features (Any extra features that are not Knowledge Base specific, but are nice to have.)
- Speed & general SEO friendliness (Page loading speed or semantic markup is one of the factors in Google algorithm. That’s why you should avoid bloat in your code.)
- Accessibility (Can anyone use the theme or will disabled users struggle with accessing the content? Are you ready to sacrifice up to 20% of your traffic for having an inaccessible website? [we don’t want to make it overly complex and that’s we will focus only on fundamental features that every site should have])
Excited about getting started? Let’s Go!
Best Premium WordPress Knowledge Base Themes Comparison
KnowAll theme allows you to create powerful Knowledge Base in minutes.
It has a really clean and professional design, looks very attractive but at the same time is not overwhelming. Users are not distracted and can focus on browsing the content. The good news is that you can customise the theme to match your brand style guide with no coding required. The theme provides many options that will help you adjust the theme’s look and feel as you like.
The real power of KnowAll is the features. The ones that are specifically worth mentioning are:
- Instant Answers: A feature that suggests related content and shows the matching results while the user is typing.
- Article feedback: A feature that helps you to make your Knowledge Base better by identifying unhelpful articles.
- Search analytics that gives you valuable insights about how your users use your search feature and what content you are missing.
The theme has clean code and loads really fast. It has correct markup and has no bigger accessibility issues (some elements could have a better contrast ratio). This all makes the theme great for both users and search engines.
Who is this theme for? It’s a perfect fit for both small and large scale projects that require a real knowledge base functionality.
Price: from $149
Flatbase is a nicely crafted WordPress Knowledge Base theme that is aiming to help your user find solutions.
It comes with 6 predefined demo versions and multiple layouts for single articles. It has also quite elegant options panel that will help you to customize the theme to fit your needs.
The features we liked the most are:
- Instant Answers: AJAX-based search feature that helps your user get answer suggestions while they are typing into the search bar
- BBpress integration: an option that allows you to create a community forum to interact with your customers
- FAQ templates: A nice extension to your Knowledge Base that will help you to answer repetitive questions.
Unfortunately, it’s also not accessible. Keyboard navigation is not possible because the outline of the interactive element is missing. Background and foreground colors contrast is not sufficient. Forms have no labels.
Who is this theme for? We recommend it for small projects or MVP (Minimum Viable Product) in companies that want to check if Knowledge Base is something that they can benefit from. It may be also a good fit for internal Knowledge Base where speed and accessibility are not that crucial factors.
Price: $49 (Quite decent for the quality)
HelpGuru is a very popular theme that couldn’t be left out from our WordPress Knowledge Base themes comparison. It is advertised as a theme that will allow you to spend less time on support and have happier customers.
It’s worth mentioning that the HelpGuru theme comes from the same author as the KnowAll theme. It just focuses on a different segment of the market and has fewer features.
HelpGuru theme has a nice and minimal layout. It’s clean and tidy so users can focus on the website content.
It’s feature-rich, but there are a few we liked the most:
- Live search that enables users to find what they are looking for instantly.
- Article feedback option that helps you to see which articles are helping your users and which ones need some improvement.
- Support for a Forum feature (bbPress) and a News articles
The theme is loading pretty fast and has no bigger issues related to speed. (Fully loads under 3 seconds).
In terms of accessibility, there are a few things that can be improved. There’s no outline on the elements which makes keyboard navigation not possible. Background and foreground contrast could have been better ( it may affect people that are visually impaired)
Who is this theme for? Since HelpGuru was created as a self-service Knowledge Base its main purpose is to support your products or services. Technically it can be a perfect fit for a Knowledge Base with smaller and bigger traffic.
Price: $69. (Which is a fair price for what the theme offers.)
KnowHow is advertised as a perfect theme for providing a support resource for your customers and is super easy to manage. It’s one of the oldest themes on the market (created in 2012), that’s why it has so many sold copies (almost 5k!). The result is astonishing!
How does KnowHow present in 2020? It has a simple, almost bare layout. It looks really clean and is intuitive to navigate.
KnowHow theme has the search bar exposed in a nice way. Thanks to that it’s very easy to look for things no matter on which part of the site you are.
Unlike the KnowAll and HelpGuru themes KnowHow is not very rich in features. It’s actually limited to Instant search and FAQ templates.
Page speed is decent, it loads between 1 and 2 seconds, so this is a strong point in terms of SEO.
Unfortunately, accessibility is not the strongest point of this theme. Outline on the elements was removed which makes it impossible to navigate through the page with the keyboard. Links do not have a discernible name and the background/foreground contrast ratio is not sufficient.
Who is it for? As we established KnowHOW covers only fundamental features so we would recommend it for a small to medium companies that are only starting with their Knowledge Base service and want to see how it would fit them.
Lipi is advertised as a theme that allows you to create a help centre for your customers and end-users.
As you will be able to see there are 10 demo versions that are showing how you can customise the theme. Demo versions cover different niches such as hospital, university, business or even app support.
The theme comes with powerful and easy to use admin panel that allows you ou can pick your header layout, skin, change colours or typography. You get everything that will allow you to adjust your theme layout in seconds.
There are some features that grabbed our attention and that weren’t that common among other themes: – An option to create private categories and articles to limit the knowledge base to certain people. – Additionally, on top of the above feature, you get an option to set article-level access by creating a few different user roles. – An option to print articles is a nice gesture that allows a user to take useful knowledge to the offline world.
We’ve also noticed some fundamental SEO / accessibility issues. Heading elements that are not in a sequentially-descending order. (Properly ordered headings that do not skip levels convey the semantic structure of the page, making it easier to navigate and understand when using assistive technologies). Or an outline that was removed from interactive elements.
Who is it for? Lipi Theme comes with many design options so many people will certainly find it useful. However, we wouldn’t recommend it for Universities or Hospitals where accessible website should be a top priority.
Manual advertises as Multi-Purpose Online Documentation, Knowledge Base & Creative WordPress Theme. And indeed this theme can be used as a Knowledge Base site as well as a regular Portfolio, Documentation or Business website. There are plenty of options to choose from.
In comparison to other WordPress Knowledge Base themes ‘Manual’ is really rich in features. It comes with an FAQ template, offers a community forum and gives you an option to set up an article access level and restrict content.
Woocommerce integration is a quite interesting feature too. It’s not common among the Knowledge Base themes to provide a shop integration, but we think that it’s a nice addon. Especially if you pick the ‘Manual’ theme to power your regular website too.
Like with many other themes multi-purpose approach powered with page builder strikes back when we look at website speed. Having many extra features generates plenty of render-blocking resources (39!) and results in excessive DOM size (887 elements). Depending on the content you can expect your site to load more than 3 seconds that are recommended by Google.
We also found a few serious and fundamental accessibility issues. Lack of [alt] attribute, removed outline or not sufficient contrast ratio for background and foreground colours. This all may result in people struggling to use your website.
Who is it for? We probably should revert the question here and ask: “Who is it not for?” As a typical multi-purpose theme, it looks like it can suit any project. But at the same time, it focuses broadly on the topic and provides general only features. If you feel that it’s right for you then it probably is, if you need a theme that is strictly created with a knowledge base in mind then it may be not.
Tessera is a modern knowledge base, support forum and help desk WordPress theme.
There are only a few demo versions showing this theme capability, but they all look impressive. The design looks really modern too.
Among the features that Tessera offers we found a few that we like the most. Let’s start with ‘Awesome Support’ plugin integration. It allows your user to submit a ticket from the front-end. You or your agents to reply to this ticket from the back-end.
Next thing we should appreciate is Seamless integration with bbPress forum plugin. It allows you to create a community around your product.
Theme advertises itself as “Made with SEO and Speed in mind.” Is it really like that? Well, 38 render-blocking resources definitely won’t help you with getting low page speed results. The speed index is 7.9 which is almost twice as much as Google recommends. You will need to put quite a lot of effort to make your page load quickly.
How about SEO and accessibility? Improper headings structure makes it hard to convey the semantic structure of the page.
Ie [user-scalable=”no”] attribute makes it impossible to zoom in the site. Users with low vision. Those who rely on screen magnification to properly see the contents of a web page will be really struggling with reading your content.
Who is it for? Well, considering all the above we see it as a good fit for small companies and startups that care more about the visual layer / nice design than the actual functionality. A great solution for a low-cost MVP to explore how your clients will interact with Knowledge Base theme.
‘Knowledge Base’ is a Premium WordPress Theme that seems to be a good fit for Wiki and Knowledge Base Websites. It is a clean and feature-rich solution to provide support & basic product knowledge to customers.
‘Knowledge Base’ has a really modest and clean design. It comes with 3 Homepage templates and optional display of featured and latest articles. It also has 4 predefined skins that will help to adjust how your page looks like.
A Live Chat feature that is built-in into the theme (it’s based on WP Live Chat plugin integration) is definitely something that your customers may find useful. Next to that, you can also find bbPress Plugin integration that will allow you to set up a Community Forum as well as the FAQ template.
Although Knowledge Base theme has quite a lot (28) render-blocking resources it loads pretty quickly. Most of the speed issues we are caused by the Flickr widget.
In general, the average loading time should be smaller than 3 seconds.
We were also happy to see that the theme doesn’t have any bigger accessibility concerns. It’s possible to navigate the page with the keyboard. Text and background contrast ratio is in most cases (except for copyright and tagline) good enough and the alt descriptions are used correctly.
Who is it for? It’s a really universal, functional and quite accessible theme that may fit into many businesses. We would recommend it to anyone who seriously thinks about starting with a Knowledge Base for their clients.
Price: $39 (definitely worth it!)
Best Free WordPress Knowledge Base Themes Comparison:
When we are talking about Best WordPress Knowledge Base themes we obviously can’t skip the free themes.
My Wiki is a simple, Twitter Boostrap based theme for creating a Knowledge Base, Support, Wiki or FAQ solution. It’s translation ready so can be translated into many languages (only LTR though).
It was created 6 years ago and has 2000+ active Installs which is really impressive.
The theme does not come with many theme customisation options. You can pick featured category, how many posts to show, change category header title and adjust your page background color.
How it will work for you in terms of SEO and or Accessibility?
Either of them is the strongest point of this theme. To name just a few:
- Random heading structure
- Lack of fundamental semantic tags (like the <main> tag)
- Inaccessible icons
All of that makes it very hard to convey the semantic structure of the page. It also makes it hard to navigate and understand for Google indexing bots or when using assistive technologies.
My Knowledge Base
My Knowledge Base is a free Knowledge Base theme available in the WordPress.org repository.
It was created almost 6 years ago and is still regularly updated. The theme has more than 1000+ active installs.
Theme’s layout is really simple and minimal. You can choose between 2 home page layouts. Fullwidth which will list 4 categories in a row and the ‘Knowledgebase with sidebar’ that will list 3 categories in a row. The latter will allow putting your widgets on the right-hand side of the layout.
My Knowledge Base theme comes with a few theme options that will allow you to customize the front-end output. Such as:
- Toggling the ‘View all posts’ link visibility
- Showing the category description
- Exclude certain categories
- Change the posts ordering
Unfortunately, there’s no way to change the colour scheme so you need to rely on the default blue color or your CSS skills.
We don’t have the best news if you are concerned about SEO and/or accessibility. Theme lacks semantic markup, the heading structure is completely broken and misleading.
This means that page structure will be hard to understand not only by Google bots but primarily users that are relying on assistive technology.
Each theme has something unique to offer and each project has it’s very own requirements, so it’s very hard to pick the best one.
The choice is always up to you, but we would definitely recommend using a theme that not only has a nice layout but also has all the functionalities you may need when your project grows.
We think that it’s worth to invest a few more bucks in a theme that will really help your SEO and rank good in search engines.
A theme that will be accessible to every single user.
We strongly believe that the money you will spend in the beginning will return back to you really quickly.