Exciting news: your LibraryH3lp subscription or trial is now 100% more awesome. Today, we released a knowledge base feature as part of LibraryH3lp (on the main U.S. server only so far) that lets you quickly and easily build a searchable, browsable FAQ for your library. Plus, real-time chat and an offline e-mail form are automatically integrated so that patrons can get answers directly from you.
The great thing about a FAQ is that it saves time for both librarians and patrons by providing thorough answers to commonly asked questions, questions often encountered when chatting with patrons online. Now you can combine real-time chat with a browsable FAQ to provide a richer virtual reference experience for your patrons.
What does it look like?Visit our shiny new LibraryH3lp FAQ to see an example in action. There is even a built-in mobile-specific version for smart phones. Which version patrons see depends on the device browsing the FAQ. And yes, your FAQ comes automatically with a mobile specific version too!
|Screenshot of our FAQ demo site|
You can see of the number of views for each question and the last updated time stamp indicating answer "freshness." And there is a built-in social component as well. Vote a question up as useful (a like) or down (a dislike) as not useful and see a tally of the likes and dislikes from other viewers.
Look and feel for the FAQ is highly customizable. You have access to all the underlying templates used to create the three basic types of pages, giving you complete control over the look of your own FAQ site. Restructure and build upon the default templates as needed to best suit your needs. But you don't have to start from scratch, we also offer 12 preconfigured themes for your FAQ. You can see each of the themes in action in our LibraryH3lp FAQ. To switch between themes, use the drop-down menu in the upper right-hand corner. Pam likes Spacelab. Eric digs Journal. Amy prefers Superhero.
How do I build my own?There are two tabs available within the new FAQs tab of the admin site - Questions and Pages. Use these to manage your questions and customize your pages respectively.
The Questions tab shows a tabular listing of all your questions. You can add, edit, and remove questions. Plus you can see the number of views, likes, dislikes, last update date, and topics for each question. You can do keyword searches to easily find existing questions you'd like to edit, and you can sort by any column heading.
The Pages tab is where you control the look and feel of your site. Choose your theme, select the queue you want chats directed to, and enter an email address for offline queries, and you're all set. You also have complete control over your site's HTML in the Templates area, if you need it.
We take care of the hosting and your FAQ gets its own address, shown on the Pages tab as Site. Also on the Pages tab, you can enter a custom URL for your site within your own domain as a CNAME. This means that instead of your patrons seeing your FAQ URL as "something.ask.libraryh3lp.com," you can show them something using your own domain instead, for example, "faq.myschool.edu." Your network administrator will be able to help out with the needed DNS tweaking on your library's end. More documentation.
Making the FAQ better.All of the basics are there. We have lots of ideas for improvements, but we also want to hear from you! Build your own FAQ. Try it out. Collect feedback from your librarians and patrons and let us know how we can make it better for you.
And finally, the best part of all is that there is no fine print or gotchas. It's just one more thing you get with your unlimited, low flat-rate LibraryH3lp subscription. More bang for your buck. Better virtual reference service for your patrons.