More flexible knowledge base design and layout, including custom HTML/CSS

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HubSpot Product Team

There have been a number of different posts in the Community which are about the same core need (customizing the styling of the knowledge base), but many have been marked as "solved" or "delivered" because of options that get you part-way there. I'm consolidating those into this post so we can more easily track this need. This post should not be marked as solved or delivered until a knowledge base can be fully customized in layout and styling.

 

I've spoken with many customers who still want more flexibility in knowledge base styling, including: 

  • Custom layouts for index pages and articles
  • More fonts and styling options to better align KB with the rest of a business's website

For those of us who are working to improve the HubSpot product, it's incredibly helpful to have example use cases from our customers, and the posts here on the Community play an important role in our prioritization process. 

 

Giving you more flexibility in KB styling is something we'd like to do, and when we have the bandwidth to dig into this project we'll look to you all for guidance on how to best support your needs. So if customization is important to you, please add your voice to this thread!

 

For reference, I'm listing here the other posts which are related to this topic: 

Snaedis Valsdottir
Associate Product Manager, CMS Publishing
3 Replies 3
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Occasional Contributor

Our team would appreciate some functionality, at the very least, to allow our help center logo link to open in a new tab.

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Occasional Contributor | Gold Partner

Thanks for your attention to this issue, @Snaedis. You mentioned we should add our voice to this thread if KB customization is important to us, so I'm doing just that. We're hoping to customize fonts (with the ability to use a Google Font being the main request) and adjust the layout on the KB index page. It would be really excellent if we could edit the KB index page to add our own modules to the page alongside the existing grid layout currently used for KB article categories. 

 

I'd be happy to show examples or use cases when the product team is ready to move this into planning and production.

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New Member

Thanks for bringing all these suggestions together in one place Snaedis. It's good to see a summary of some issues currently under discussion.

I'm currently trying to work out how to set up a knowledgebase in Hubspot that is currently set up in Madcap Flare. There appear to be several key limitations in Hubspot that makes this tricky, but I would be interested to hear from others how they would deal with these challenges, as I'm new to Hubspot.

 

We are keen to move our knowledgebase into Hubspot because of the integration features it provides, but working around these issues is making it a bigger job than we had hoped.

 

1. Drop-down accordions not available. This is a key feature of Flare and allows embedded paragraphs, tables and images to be hidden under a heading, but displayed by clicking on that heading. It's a great way of layering information in one article so that the user can see what's there and read selected information without having to jump to new articles. The nearest I can get to reproducing this behavior is to set up a mini-TOC at the start of a long article and link each heading in the TOC to an anchor further down the article. But more on anchors later...

 

2. Single categorization of articles. As far as I can see, any article can appear once only in the overall architecture of the knowledgebase. This is a problem for me as the current Flare knowledgebase has two or more entry points in the TOC for many articles. For example, Jobs>Job settings>Job templates, Templates>Job templates, Settings>Job settings>Job templates. So it looks like I have to decide which is the most useful access path for the article on Job templates and categorize it accordingly.

 

3. Two levels: Category and sub-category. Flare allows as many levels as required to be defined in the overall table of contents for the knowledgebase. This is a powerful feature as it allows individual articles to be located in the most suitable place in the overall information architecture, regardless of how many levels are required. Continuing with the previous example, there is currently an article called "Creating a job template". This article appears at the end of the path: Jobs>Job settings>Job templates>Creating a job template, at level 4 in the hierarchy. Because I can only store articles down to three levels, this means that all the articles about working with Job templates (creating, editing, deleting, copying etc.) need to be stored in a single article in Hubspot. This is OK, but I need to make use of my mini-TOC to allow users to jump straight to the relevant section. In some ways it's probably better to limit the number of levels in the hierarchy, but it's going to require some rethinking about how the articles are organized and linked to get it to work in Hubspot.

 

4. Links to anchors only within the same article. I can't find any way to set up a link from one article to another that goes to an anchor in the target article, rather than the article itself. This means that if I want to set up a link from one article to (say) the  "Deleting a job template" section of the Job templates article, I can't do that. The nearest I can get is to jump to the article itself and then rely on the user spotting the "deleting" option in the mini-TOC. This problem could be resolved if it was possible to edit the HTML directly (as mentioned in the main post) and add a suitable anchor reference manually to the link.

 

Perhaps you can give me some idea if any of these issues are likely to be addressed in the near future? All of them apart from the last one have some sort of workaround, but that could be addressed if HTML editing is provided.