Create Great User Documents for Word Press


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Creating a multiple learning channel improves the learning experience of WordPress users. Ideas, tips & case study for the increase theme and plugin developers.

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Create Great User Documents for Word Press

  1. 1. Create Great User Documents by Gloria Antonelli WordCamp Chicago 2013 forTheme & Plugins Developers
  2. 2. about me artist designer technologist trainer consultant web strategist wordpress developer WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  3. 3. stuff i know html css php wordpress web standards ux ui seo graphic design content strategy usability testing information architecture WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  4. 4. long tail of WP users documentation culture doc types for learning writing tips visual presentation tips instructional presentation tips findability user interface doc sprints case studies learning channel overview WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  5. 5. Improving WordPress Themes & Plugins Support Documentation By Gloria Antonelli Video available on WordPress.TV Slides available on The conversation started at WPChicago 2011.
  6. 6. development design documentation WP GOLD STANDARDS WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  7. 7. new & non tech users experiencedusers The Learning Curve Difficult Easy Long Tail of WP Users Unlimited niche with limited skill.
  8. 8. Multiple Learning Layers Essential Advanced WordPress Admin UI HTML5 Theme Functionality CSS3 Theme Options PHP Theme Widgets JQUERY “Learn” image Aaron Schmidt WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  9. 9. Buried in support requests? A great learning center can transform your business. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  10. 10. Stand out in the Market Place Decrease Support Requests Increase Customer Satisfaction IncreaseYour Happiness Level
  11. 11. Users select themes & plugins by learning channel quality.
  12. 12. Documentation Culture
  13. 13. Your Job Provide instructional information to users. Document development time up front or pay on the back end with support time. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  14. 14. Improve Users Productivity Identify your user goals & learning outcomes. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  15. 15. Provide Road Maps WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  16. 16. Road Blocks Users have different skill sets, technical expertise, and learning styles. No single format works for everyone. Provide multiple learning channels for success. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  17. 17. Learning Doc Types Topical GuidesTutorials Reference Guides How to’s System Requirements Knowledge Base Step by Step Infographics eBook/WhitePaper Screencast Code Snippets Trouble Shooting Webinars Deep-Dive Manual Videos Start Guides FAQ Offer multiple options for learning. Offer multiple options for learning. GlossaryOffer multiple options for learning. Offer multiple options for learning. Overviews WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  18. 18. Infographics
  19. 19. Forums Sometimes good & sometimes not good. Many Theme companies are closing forums and moving to ticketed support systems.
  20. 20. Start Here
  21. 21. Just Start Writing
  22. 22. Then Edit Most docs don’t go beyond a rough draft.
  23. 23. edit on paper read slowly read out loud review 3X Successful Editing WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  24. 24. Writing Tips Target each audience group. Act like a personal instructor. Be conversational. Be brief, clear, concise, & helpful. Write short paragraphs & omit fluff. Don’t buried important info in a wall of text. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  25. 25. Visual Presentation Tips Create a documentation style guide. Chunk instructional content. Use tables & lists. Use callouts. Format for scanning. Use header hierarchy. Use color coding. Use white space for readability.
  26. 26. Instructional Tips Break down into step by step instructions. Create new tutorials from forum conversations. Provide written content for videos. Include clarification of terminology. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  27. 27. Anticipate Questions 1. Write down real questions. 2. Develop detailed instructions to answer the question. 3. Plug into learning channel. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  28. 28. Findability Table of Content Site Map Index ability to locate and present usable information easily, accurately, and quickly as possible. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  29. 29. Doc Sprints Collaboration
  30. 30. Doc Sprints Collaborative Document Sprints are a good fit for technical documentation. Sprints organize people to write documentation in a few days - same location or multiple time zones. WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  31. 31. Documents should not be behind a walled garden. Garden WallBy join the dots
  32. 32. Information Architecture
  33. 33. IA categorization of information into a coherent structure. Arrange for Importance or Skill Level Start Here Call of Actions Descriptive Headers Site Map & Topic Overviews GroupTopics WordCamp Chicago 2013 @GloriaAntonelli #WCCHI
  34. 34. verify content & code learners skills & abilities iterate, iterate, iterate Evaluation Assessment Modifications
  35. 35. Time for Updates Continual Document Review
  36. 36. Easy Docs Theme
  37. 37. Obox - an example of multiple leaning channels Disclaimer:A review of the learning channels layout not of Obox theme quailty.
  38. 38. Obox
  39. 39. Obox
  40. 40. Obox
  41. 41. Obox
  42. 42. Obox
  43. 43. Obox
  44. 44. Obox
  45. 45. No clear path to the plugin information.
  46. 46. An example of a clear path of learning.
  47. 47. Join the WordPress Global Community
  48. 48. thank you! Gloria Antonelli @GloriaAntonelli google + linkedin facebook Emerging Technology & Web Strategist WordPress Developer Consultant & Trainer