Tried and true tools to get your writing online

Emily Cotlier | April 6, 2017

At Write, we’re seeing more and more demand for online information solutions. Organisations want to reach their audiences immediately, wherever they are. And where they are is on the web. Here are two tried and true tools to get your writing online, and share it with specific audiences, in formats of your choice.

Why do we recommend these tools? We support them on their own merits. We’ve seen them grow and succeed. They’re affordable and scalable, with a reasonable learning curve. We know the companies behind them provide excellent support.

An in-house document solution for teams: Confluence

Confluence screenshot with one example of a Confluence landing page

Confluence’s building blocks create an online information centre for your team. Image by Confluence Atlassian.

Do you want to have documentation or a knowledge base internally? Lately we’ve seen clients successfully using Confluence Team Collaboration Software.

To get started with Confluence, you can import MS Word or HTML content. Or most users can read and write content in Confluence’s easy-to-use wiki format. Web administrators can enrich Confluence with landing pages, plug-ins for glossaries, and much more.

Confluence is a solid solution for sharing knowledge with your team. You can set it up to highlight important topics and to make the most of its strong search function. Your readers can collect their favourite topics to refer to again and again.

Confluence is also ideal when you want everyone on your team to contribute. Its simple interface makes it easy for an engaged team to keep procedures and knowledge up to date.

Searchable content for web pages and software: MadCap Flare

Diagram with the possibilities of MadCap Flare single sourcing software

Potential outputs from MadCap Flare – many and varied. Image by MadCap Software.

Do you want searchable online help for your outside clients or your software users? Do you also need to have printable manuals for them? Do you need this information available as a mobile app, too? Or maybe you’re trying to manage extensive training and documentation materials for both internal and customer audiences. MadCap Flare has you covered.

MadCap Flare is a single-sourcing tool. It saves your information in one place, and gives you a range of print and online outputs.

To get started, Flare excels at importing your information from MS Word or many other formats. Use Flare to break your core information down into sections or chapters called topics. Within topics, Flare allows you to customise:

You can then assemble these topics into output framed for your different audiences and distribution methods. With Flare’s diverse formatting options, you can set up the look and feel you need for your content.

We’ve found that MadCap Flare works best with a few dedicated experts managing it. For wider team contribution, you can collaborate using Flare’s Word content functions, or with the special module MadCap Contributor.

The challenge with online writing: getting organised

Whatever tool you decide to use, when you start a large online content project, you need to be organised. Converting your knowledge to a new format is an investment. You need project planning, information architecture, and buy-in from your team.

At Write, we can help with planning and support to make your online project a success.

To learn more, see:

Confluence software

MadCap Flare software

Web writing and editing with Write

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