Free knowledge base software and free trials

Empower your customers to find solutions fast with free knowledge base software tools or with a free knowledge base software trial.

A guide to the best free knowledge base software

Business has moved on from the days of storing hard copies of documents in filing cabinets. Software technology has made storing, retrieving, and sharing information much faster and efficient than ever before. And the best tool for organizing and accessing all of that information is knowledge base software.

Thankfully, there are many free knowledge base software options out there and there are knowledge base software that offer a free trial . You don’t have to carve a fortune out of your budget to provide your staff and customers with a streamlined resource of knowledge. In this guide, we’ll outline the different benefits and features of this helpful business tool, as well as provide a list of the best free knowledge base software or software that offer free trials.

What is a free knowledge base?

Before diving into what a free knowledge base is, we first need to discuss exactly what a knowledge base is and what it’s used for.

A knowledge base is a software tool used by both employees and customers to find answers to their questions quickly without reaching out to another person. It’s basically like a DIY help center where your users can find useful information such as best practices, technical bulletins, tips, and workarounds in one central place. The general idea behind knowledge base software is that by empowering people to seek out their own answers, it saves time and boosts productivity.

On the employee side, an internal knowledge base is like a library of every database, document, procedure, file, and policy that dictates the operations of your business. Rather than running to a colleague or superior with a question, staff members with a streamlined knowledge base can simply perform a quick search within the knowledge base, and the system will retrieve any relevant files or information.

On the customer side, the knowledge base serves as a resource of information regarding the product or service they purchased. A customer who recently bought your product, for instance, might be having an issue with using it for the first time. Rather than call up a representative — which the customer might not be available to do at the moment — they can instead go to your website, enter their query into your database, and sift through related articles published and approved by your business.

In both settings, the knowledge base software allows users to seek out their own answers. Knowledge base tools are all about self-sufficiency, and productivity. There are many free knowledge base software or software offering free trials to get your customers and employees on the path to self sufficiency.

Why does your business need free knowledge base software?

Whether you’re a small business just starting out, or an enterprise business with multiple departments, locations, and levels of management, you need a knowledge base platform. Without one, your staff are left on their own to seek out information from other employees, which massively slows down productivity.

Plus, without a knowledge base, your customers’ only option for seeking help with even the simplest issue is to call or talk to your representatives. This monopolizes your agents’ time, forcing them into an endless cycle of answering the same simple questions over and over again instead of dealing with the really critical issues. A free knowledge base software or a free trial can be a great starting point to help both your customers and your staff.

What elements should your free knowledge base software have?

  • Native or third-party integrations: Any software you use should be able to connect with the other business tools you’re currently using. This allows you to move from task to task without jumping between browsers or worrying that data won’t be shareable across platforms.
  • A fast search engine: This is typically the first point of contact in a knowledge base. It’s where every query starts, which means it’s a vital component of your knowledge base software. The best search engines aren’t only fast, they’re also able to decipher meaning despite obstacles like bad spelling or incorrect language usage.
  • Permission settings: Not all information needs to be made available to everyone. Permission settings allow you to dictate who has access to what information. You can also control who has permissions to analyze and modify your code or create new content for the database.
  • SEO optimization: Optimizing your knowledge base with keywords and search terms helps ensure that your knowledge base is the first solution that pops up when customers begin their search for answers. By making sure your pages are indexed correctly, bots can crawl your content without hassle, and produce the best possible results when customers turn to the internet for help with your product or service.
  • Tools for gathering and analyzing feedback: It’s always good to get feedback on what’s working and what isn’t. The best free knowledge base software solutions allow users to solicit feedback so they can continue improving their platform’s usability.

What are the benefits of free knowledge base software?

Poor organization of information leads to sluggish workflows, decreased productivity, and dissatisfied customers. When an issue or question arises, agents and customers need a fast and easily searchable resource for solving their own problems on their own time. Otherwise, productivity at work grinds to a halt, and customers become too frustrated with their product or service to continue using it.

By using a free knowledge base tool, however, you can streamline the way staff and contacts find the information they need instantly and with minimal assistance. The benefits of using a free open source knowledge base include but aren’t limited to:

  • Higher customer retention. Customers today want fast answers, and they appreciate having a verified source of truth about your product or service where they can search out answers to their problems without having to speak to another person. This helps establish loyalty among your customer base, and makes it more likely that they’ll continue purchasing from you.
  • Less customer service traffic. Many customers ask the same questions over and over again. If their only option for asking those questions is to call your customer service line, your agents will be too overwhelmed to work on more complicated issues. Free knowledge base tools help minimize the number of inbound calls to your business, freeing your agents to deal with the trickier and more time-consuming tickets.
  • Improved team collaboration. Every department plays its role in building and maintaining strong customer relationships. Making sure that each department has access to the most accurate and up-to-date company information means that no one will be left behind or out-of-the-loop, and collaborative projects can move forward with greater speed.
  • Faster training for new staff. New employees always have a lot of questions. Providing them with a knowledge database lets them seek out their own answers without having to run to their managers with every query. This results in a faster-paced training period wherein new hires are empowered to problem solve independently.

Best free knowledge base software and free trials

Free knowledge base software

1. Bitrix24

Bitrix24 free knowledge base software

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Bitrix24 is a CRM with a free knowledge base solution for starter businesses. Available on-premise or in the cloud, Bitrix24 offers open source knowledge base options for teams looking to modify their code to meet their specific customer service needs.

Bitrix24’s platform provides a centralized company knowledge base that helps everyone stay on the same page, quickly bring new hires up to speed, and maintain an accurate record of activities. Plus, this free open source knowledge base software also has the option to create a knowledge base for a specific project or workgroup, so staff can narrow their focus to where it’s most needed.

Bitrix24 offers a 30-day free trial, as well as a free version for starter business tools.

Bitrix24 free knowledge base software features include:
  • Self service portal
  • Mind maps
  • SEO management
  • Cataloging/categorization
  • Collaboration tools
  • Content delivery

2. Piggydb

Piggydb free knowledge base software

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Piggydb is in the business of knowledge creation. It’s a scalable open source knowledge base building platform that lets you start simple, with nothing more than a diary or notebook. Then, as your database grows, the platform allows you to expand on your existing content to include more knowledge and features.

To get started, Piggydb users need to have a Java Runtime Environment (Version 6(1.6) or later). The standalone package for GUI Environment lets users run Piggydb as a desktop application, and you can choose to run it individually, or collaboratively with a team.

Piggydb is available for free download to all users.

Piggddb knowledge base software features include:
  • Linking phrases
  • Full text search
  • Hierarchical tagging
  • Text fragments with wiki formatting
  • Familiar web interface
  • Printer-friendly document view

3. myBase

This free-form database software is a no-frills platform that uses a word processor format to build up a knowledge base. It allows users to upload text, images, documents, emails, and other files regardless of format and length.

Using myBase will require some additional plugins and add-on programs, but it’s still loaded with features optimized to store and manage enormous amounts of information. The current version offers features like data compression, attachments support, fast load speed, hierarchical labels, and more.

myBase is a free open source knowledge base software available for download on its website.

Key features include:
  • Uncluttered user interface
  • Password protection
  • Recycle bin
  • Revision history
  • HTML tree generator
  • Javascript APIs

4. Guru

Guru free knowledge base software trial

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Guru is a knowledge management software platform that leverages artificial intelligence and integrations to provide companies with streamlined internal communications. Guru allows users to create their own wiki, where employees can turn if they ever need critical information fast so they can deliver speedy resolutions to customers.

This platform also promises faster onboarding for new hires. Guru’s onboarding software helps expedite the learning process and ensure better employee retention. Plus, it also has features for recording meetings. If a staff member misses a meeting for whatever reason, they can simply refer to the recording to get the information they missed.

Guru offers a free version for teams up to 3 core users as well as a 30-day free trial for their Builder and Expert plans.

Guru free knowledge base software features include:

  • Slack & Microsoft Teams integrations
  • Verification workflow and browser extension
  • Self service portal
  • Content management
  • Cataloging/categorization
  • Discussions/forums

Learn more about the Zendesk integration with Guru.

5. Documize

Documize free knowledge base software

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Designed to help businesses manage internal and external documentation, Documize is a simple open source knowledge base solution. Its document hub, Community, was built to suit both technical and non-technical users.

Easily organize your documents without using folders by assigning labels and categories by group. Documize also makes it simple to archive old publications, publish changes, and create a best practices library. Plus, it offers powerful reporting and analytics for gauging where your content needs further refinement.

Documize offers a free plan for up to 10 users.

Documize knowledge base software features include:
  • Document classification
  • File conversion
  • Offline access
  • Version control
  • Compliance tracking
  • Archiving & retention

6. Flowlu

Flowlu free knowledge base software

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This knowledge base management tool is all about collaboration. It offers simple tools for capturing up-to-date information, and then dispersing it to the people who need it the most. Designed for technical and non-technical users, it provides a single database where your team can share their expertise and benefit from others’ experience.

Flowlu also includes business tools for project management, cloud CRM, invoicing, team task management, and more. It’s a good option for small and medium-sized businesses looking to unify all of their business-related tasks onto a single platform.

Flowlu offers a free plan for up to 2 users and 1 knowledge base and free trials for higher end plans.

Flowlu knowledge base software features include:
  • Cataloging/categorization
  • Mobile access
  • Full text search
  • Self service portal
  • Reporting/analytics
  • Intuitive editor

7. phpMyFAQ

This is an open source knowledge base software tool that’s mobile-friendly and scalable. With a powerful search tool, users can locate their answers quickly by entering specific terms or searching by category. They also get to view most popular searches to lead them to the most commonly referenced issues.

phpMyFAQ also comes with community support, which lets users generate and share their own entries. It also offers Twitter integration, wiki-like revisions, and built-in user tracking that analyzes how your users navigate your FAQ pages.

phpMyFAQ knowledge base software features include:
  • FAQ content management system
  • 40+ languages
  • Simple configuration
  • Cloud hosting with Docker
  • Compatible with modern browsers

8. Zoho Desk

Zoho Desk free knowledge base software plan

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Zoho Desk is a help desk solution that promises happier customers and fewer tickets. With HTML and CSS, users can customize their portals to precisely match the look and style of the website, creating a unified branded look across all customer-facing interfaces.

Zoho Desk’s repository of articles and community forums empower customers to search out their own answers. And when they can’t locate the information they need, they can submit tickets directly from the Help Center platform.

Zoho Desk offers a free plan for up to 3 agents with a private knowledge base and free trials for higher end plans.

Key features include:
  • SEO friendly
  • Help Center reports
  • Auto-suggest capability
  • Domain mapping
  • Secure access

9. myBase

This free-form database software is a no-frills platform that uses a word processor format to build up a knowledge base. It allows users to upload text, images, documents, emails, and other files regardless of format and length.

Using myBase will require some additional plugins and add-on programs, but it’s still loaded with features optimized to store and manage enormous amounts of information. The current version offers features like data compression, attachments support, fast load speed, hierarchical labels, and more.

myBase is a free open source knowledge base software available for download on its website.

Free knowledge base software trials

1. Zendesk

Zendesk free knowledge base software trial

Zendesk knowledge base software provides a simple yet powerful system for creating and managing your company’s knowledge base content. In lieu of scouring search engines and wading through tech blogs from the early 2000s, this powerful search interface makes it easy for customers to find the answers they need, when they need them.

Zendesk’s platform lets you boost customer experience by supplying them with the knowledge they need at every touchpoint, including during initial reach, first sale, renewals and upgrades, and more. By implementing Zendesk’s free knowledge base software trial, your business will be able to meet needs all along the customer journey, increasing customer retention and making for a satisfied customer base.

A free trial of Zendesk knowledge base software gives customers the autonomy they crave, but it also gives your support team a major gift: time. Customer independence means your chat team can work on bigger projects for your business like creating content, troubleshooting communication breakdowns, and building out your knowledge base to keep you ahead of the competition. Simply put, your team has time and bandwidth to focus on the complex projects that will help your business grow.

Zendesk offers a 14-day free trial.

Zendesk free knowledge base software features include:
  • Self service portal
  • Surveys & feedback
  • Full text search
  • Discussions/forums
  • Cataloging/categorization
  • Macros/templates responses

2. Freshdesk

This intuitive knowledge base platform lets your business swiftly build and manage your problem-solving content. Customers can view document tutorials, DIY guides to using their products, and answers to commonly asked queries. Freshdesk also offers a private internal knowledge base where customer support agents can quickly locate policies or troubleshooting workflows.

Freshdesk lets you select your approach to offering self-service to customers. Choose from creating a minimal self-service portal that only addresses the most commonly asked questions, or customize a full knowledge base of solutions including videos and tutorials. Plus, with customizations for branding HTML or CSS, users can create personalized looks for their self service portal that match the style and feel of their brand.

Freshdesk offers a 21-day free trial.

Freshdesk knowledge base software features include:
  • Collaboration tools
  • Communication management
  • Content management
  • Content creation
  • SEO optimization
  • Feedback, reporting, & analytics

3. Wix Answers

Wix Answers free knowledge base software trial

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With automations and a built-in knowledge management system, Wix Answers is a top free knowledge base software for small businesses. It promises to help customer service departments cut down on contact volume by making their company’s knowledge the first-stop solution for customer queries.

And to help with onboarding, Wix Answers offers AI-powered reply boxes that assist new hires in getting acclimated to new procedures and practices. It also offers tools for getting actionable insights into customer behavior, allowing you to further refine your knowledge base organization for optimal efficiency.

Wix Answers offers a 14-day free trial.

Wix Answers knowledge base software features include:
  • Full text search
  • Macros/templated responses
  • Multi-channel communication
  • Customizable branding
  • Content management
  • Self service portal
  • Reporting/analytics

4. Document360

Wix Answers free knowledge base software trial

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This knowledge base software platform was designed for growing companies, enabling them to create a help center with simple end-user interfaces and third-party integrations. For editors and reviewers producing content, it offers a knowledge base portal with an art editor and category manager.

For customers and employees, Document360’s knowledge base site is optimized for searching and reading across a range of devices. Users can also build online user guides, tutorials, FAQ pages, sales and marketing playbooks, and more.

Document360 offers a 14-day free trial of their knowledge base software.

Document360 knowledge base software features include:
  • Discussions/forums
  • Self service portal
  • Full text search
  • Collaboration tools
  • Content management
  • Technical documentation

Learn more about the Zendesk integration with Document360.

How to know which free knowledge base tool or free trial is right for you?

Before deciding on a platform, you need to have an understanding of your knowledge base requirements. You need to take into account how many users you’ll have, how many languages you need to support everyone involved, and how much control you want over the design elements for branding purposes. You’ll also want to pay close attention to your team’s IT capabilities and the software’s user-friendliness. If your knowledge base tool takes too long to learn or is too complicated to build and organize, it may be more trouble than it’s worth.

The best way of knowing if a free knowledge base tool or a free trial is worth it is to run a test drive. When weighing your free help desk knowledge base software options, take note of the providers who offer free trials. Then, confer with your team members to see if they’d be willing to experiment with a new platform.

Whether you decide to go for an open source free knowledge base software or a proprietary platform, the key is to make sure that your solution is able to scale with your business. The last thing you want is to commit to a platform only to outgrow its capabilities down the road.

Frequently asked questions

What can you upload on a free knowledge base?

You can upload different kinds of content to your knowledge base, depending on your needs and what’s allowed by the platform especially during a free knowledge base software trial. Common content uploaded into knowledge bases typically include text files, images, audio files, and videos. Make sure to check if there are restrictions on how large files shared in your knowledge database can be, as some providers may limit the size of your uploads.

Does a free knowledge base deliver an omnichannel experience?

The benefit of offering an omnichannel experience is that anyone seeking help from your knowledge base will be able to easily access and use the information they find, no matter what device or platform they’re using. But the availability of omnichannel functionalities depends on the knowledge base software you choose.

If you want your free knowledge base software trial accessible across platforms and devices, an all-inclusive business software provider like Zendesk is a strong option. These end-to-end platforms offer multichannel customer service options, including knowledge base software

.

Ready to a free knowledge base for free?

Self-sufficiency is a beautiful thing. Give your customers the chance to help themselves instead of depending on you — at any time of day. By using a system that makes it simple for customers to access articles or documents they need, they are able to happily help themselves.

With a more empowered customer and employee base, your operations will have more elbow room to accommodate higher volumes of clients and sales. Arm your business with the power to spread its knowledge with a free trial of knowledge base software from Zendesk.

Start a free Zendesk trial today.

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