Recently on Helpjuice’s blog, we published an in-depth guide to creating an internal wiki for your business.
There, we discussed:
- What an internal wiki is — and what it is not
- Why you might want to create one for your team and/or your customers
- How to get your company wiki up and running
We also discussed some of the most popular wiki tools available to businesses today, such as Confluence, Notion, and Guru. Today, we’re going to take an even closer look at the many available wiki tools to choose from (both premium and open-source).
Why Should Your Team Use a Wiki Tool?
Before we dive in, we need to answer the question of why your team should use a corporate wiki tool in the first place.
Create Alignment Along Best Practices
Your wiki will house your team’s documented standard operating procedures, best practices, and overall collective knowledge.
This ensures your team members always operate with these best practices in mind — and that they can always refer to these documents as needed.
Employee Onboarding and Training
Your internal wiki will also be a crucial tool for onboarding and training your employees.
For one, you can refer to your wiki intentionally and strategically throughout your training sessions. This can help reinforce the lesson at hand — or perhaps better communicate tacit knowledge and other information.
For your employees, your wiki will again serve as an open library of resources as needed. On top of helping them succeed in the moment, this also makes for continuous improvement of knowledge and skills over time.
Provide Self-Service Options
The public side of your wiki will act as the self-service portal modern consumers expect from the brands they do business with.
This not only enhances the customer experience, but also frees up time for your service and support staff to work with users with more pressing issues.
Retain Employee Knowledge
Practically speaking, your wiki tool will allow you to retain team knowledge well into the future — even as employees retire or otherwise churn.
This will save you countless hours while getting new employees onboard and up to speed. Similarly, it makes it easy for your long-time employees to fill in the gaps left by their former colleagues.
In any case, documenting your collective knowledge ensures you never lose the valuable pieces of wisdom behind your team’s success, no matter who comes and goes within your company.
Develop a Knowledge-Centered Culture
Your wiki will ultimately play a key role in bringing knowledge and knowledge management to the center of your organization.
As your team grows more accustomed to using and building on your wiki, they’ll begin to realize the positive impacts knowledge sharing has on their individual and team performance. Ideally, this will open the door for more knowledge-focused initiatives (such as communities of practice and further employee training).
What Features Should Wiki Software Offer?
Now, we need to discuss the main features your tool of choice should include — regardless of your more specific purposes.
That said, some tools may offer more advanced features within these functions. Still, even the more basic tools we’ll be discussing will offer some level of the following.
Collaborative editing is essentially the nature of all wiki tools.
Whether in real-time or asynchronously, all relevant team members should be able to help create, edit, and optimize all wiki content. Many tools also allow users to annotate and comment on wiki content being developed — and content that has already been published.
Your wiki tool should provide full oversight of and control over the content your team creates.
The ability to organize your content is crucial. Look for wiki tools that make it easy to:
- Build content structures and hierarchies
- Interlink related and relevant content
- Navigate your content library (as users and editors)
Some tools use automation to enable content scheduling, and to remind stakeholders when it’s time to update or audit certain content. In most cases, versioning is offered to ensure all wiki content remains accurate and optimized.
Customization & Brandability
From both a functional and aesthetic perspective, you’ll want to be able to customize your wiki to your needs.
In terms of functionality, the tool should provide the flexibility needed…
- For your team to effectively and efficiently develop your wiki content
- For your end-user to get full value from your wiki content
Aesthetically speaking, you want to be able to customize your wiki’s appearance to your team’s liking. For customer-facing wikis, brandability is always important. Internally, customization can help you keep your wiki from feeling dated or obsolete.
An intelligent search function is essential — especially as your content library continues to expand.
At the very least, your wiki tool’s search function should return relevant results with minimal errors. Ideally, it allows for Google-like commands, along with dynamic form completion and search suggestions.
Some advanced wiki tools may offer search engine optimization features, as well. This all but ensures your users will be able to find exactly what they’re looking for whenever they engage with your wiki.
Multimedia and Multi-Format Support
Most modern wiki tools make it easy to inject image, video, and audio files into your knowledge content.
You might also look for a tool that allows your end-users to download your wiki content (or certain assets within said content).
Mobile and Offline Access
Along with the above, you’ll likely want a wiki tool that you can use on all mobile devices — even when you’re offline.
Multi-device access, for one, is a must. By today’s standards, this is basically table stakes.
Regarding offline access, users should typically be able to access recently-visited and highly-trafficked wiki pages at any time. While certain assets (e.g., video content) may require active downloading, text-based content should be stored in the tool’s cache for offline use.
As we’ll discuss, offline/async editing is offered by some providers — to varying degrees of success.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Both integrations and add-ons are essential parts of your future wiki tool.
For one, the tool should integrate seamlessly with the current tools in your tech stack — and, ideally, any tools you add to it in the future. As you’ll see, most tools typically integrate with various chat tools, help desks, CRM software, and more.
Many providers also offer add-ons or plug-ins — whether developed in-house or by members of the community. Some wiki tools provide hundreds of plug-ins to help you supercharge your internal efforts and user experience.
Usage Records and Reports
Managers and administrators should have full visibility of how the wiki is being used, and how it’s evolved over time.
Usage reports are important to identify commonly-visited pages and content. This, in turn, can inform a variety of initiatives — from product development and content creation to customer service and support.
Wiki tools should also keep records of any changes made to your content or content structure. The ability to revert to previous content versions is essential to avoid data loss and other disasters.
Even most open-source wiki software now offers high-level security features to keep your content and user’s actions safe and secure.
Overall, your wiki tool should offer protection against hackers, data leaks, and other such issues. While such security measures are important for all organizations, they may be a legal requirement for your team.
You might also need a wiki that enables permission restrictions and other privacy features. That way, you can be sure that certain knowledge content is only edited by specific team members — and that the process is always approached with clear intention.
17 Best Wiki Software for Businesses in 2022
Now that we have a clear idea of what an effective wiki tool should offer, let’s take a look at the best wiki software options available in 2022.
Atlassian’s Confluence gives teams a dedicated workspace where they can collaboratively create, edit, and share documents with one another in a wiki format.
Confluence offers over 75 content templates, along with a drag-and-drop interface for easy content creation. The tool’s social and chat features help make knowledge capture and sharing a normal part of your team’s processes — protecting against knowledge loss at all turns.
Confluence integrates with all other tools in Atlassian’s suite, and with over 3,000 third-party apps.
- Customizable for various purposes and use cases
- Collaborative features
- Template variety
- Interface may be too complex for non tech-savvy users
- Some navigability issues
- Free for up to 10 users and 2GB of storage
- Premium tiers start at $55/month per user, for up to 20k users and 250GB of storage
MediaWiki is the software behind Wikipedia — and the internal wikis of thousands of other businesses and organizations.
It’s a simple and reliable tool for creating content, hosting files, and developing a customized wiki space for your team. Interlinking is intuitive, in turn leading to a seamless and contextual content journey for the end-user.
MediaWiki connects with over 1,500 extensions to enhance the experience for creators and users alike.
- Quick setup and user onboarding
- Feature-rich and scalable
- Community resources and support
- Dated interface
- Infrequent updates
- MediaWiki is an open-source wiki tool
Nuclino’s wiki software offers a unified workspace where teams can collaborate in real-time while creating knowledge content.
The WYSIWYG, Markdown-enabled editor makes for quick onboarding and a simple content creation process. Code blocks allow for further content customization, while multimedia support lets teams easily communicate important information in multiple ways.
With Nuclino, teams can visualize the structure of their wiki as “clusters” — making organization and ongoing maintenance as intuitive as possible. This, combined with document tagging and interlinking features, also make for intuitive navigation of your wiki content for the end-user.
- Easy-to-use interface and features
- Integrations with Slack, Google, and others are seamless
- Comprehensive solution that can replace multiple tools
- Privacy and permission control options lacking
- Fewer integrations than other tools on the list
- Free for up to 50 items and 2GB of storage
- Standard: $5/month per user for full service
Notion is an “all-in-one workspace” for both remote and on-premise teams.
Notion focuses heavily on real-time knowledge capture, allowing teams to quickly create wiki pages using notes, messages, and other documents. With over 50 templates to choose from and a drag-and-drop editor, putting together new wiki content is quick and easy regardless of the context.
Permissions can be set within Notion based on specific pages, or on content hierarchy. Versioning also protects against accidental content edits or erasures.
- Simple and efficient user interface
- Customizable and flexible for multiple purposes
- Excellent tech support and community resources
- Lack of automation for common tasks
- Poor search functionality
- Free for up to 5 guests
- Team: $8/month per user for unlimited team members and collaborative spaces
Guru is the wiki tool of choice for a number of SaaS companies, agencies, and educational organizations.
Like Notion, Guru is heavy on knowledge capture and storage. The tool’s browser extension, for one, allows teams to capture information and data from around the web — then inject it directly into their wiki accordingly. Guru’s advanced AI notifies stakeholders of events in real-time, and delivers reminders to knowledge content creators as needed.
Finally, Guru’s expert verification and suggestion features help teams source the right info from the right individual within the company. That way, the knowledge content they create will always be as accurate and informative as possible.
- Intuitive interface and workflows
- Advanced search functions
- Interactive wiki content (e.g., quizzes)
- Documents can easily become disorganized
- Customization options lacking
- Starter: Free up to 3 users; $5/month per user for 4+
- Builder: $10/month per user
- Expert: $20/month per user
ProProfs tool allows teams of all sizes to create user-friendly wikis for both internal and customer-facing use.
It’s a highly-customizable solution, across the board: Teams can tweak ProProfs’ interface to suit their needs — and customize their wiki’s structure and appearance, too. ProProfs lets teams inject their own branded look and feel throughout their wiki, making for a streamlined experience for the user.
ProProfs’ unified search functionality combs text and tags to help you quickly find the information you need. Tagging and interlinking content builds context and creates relevant content journeys for users as they browse your wiki.
ProProfs’ wiki tool integrates with the various other tools in their suite, and with dozens of third-party tools, as well.
- Familiar Word-like text editor
- Instant/real-time knowledge-sharing capabilities
- Google-like search
- Some integrations can be buggy
- Not enough variation with provided templates
- Essentials: $30/month per author for 3 authors, 500 pages, and 1 knowledge base
- Premium: $40/month per author for 3 authors, 1,000 pages, and 3 knowledge bases