Release notes are documents that people receive when they buy and/or download software products. Nowadays, they're often distributed virtually.
In the modern world, release notes are more important than ever. This is because buying software products isn't as straightforward a process as it used to be. Buying software products is now an ongoing process as you can count on the fact that you'll be sent product updates, bug fixes, new features, and more after your initial purchase.
Unfortunately, many companies don't use release notes to their full advantage. This is a huge missed opportunity. Great release notes should be written intentionally and not as afterthoughts.
Release notes vary considerably depending on the software, company branding, and how they're distributed, but often include the following elements:
Pro Tip: Good release notes often include visual elements in order to make them more captivating and engaging for users. This can include screenshots, images, videos, and even GIFs.
Release notes are indispensable to the software development and launch process because they...
Convinced yet? We thought so! Release notes are often overlooked and thrown together as afterthoughts. Here at Slite, we want better for you.
Our release notes template is an amazing product management tool and gives you a great basis to start from. It also has a sleek look, is 100% customizable, is perfect for collaborative work... and did we mention that it's free?
What are you waiting for?
You can begin customizing your release notes template by:
Consulting With The Developers
Before you start writing your release notes, make sure that you have an excellent understanding of the updates you need to communicate to your end users. This is especially important because you should avoid technical jargon, so you'll likely need to put the updates in your own words.
Remember, most of your end users don't have degrees in computer science.
Doing Some Research
If it's your first time putting together release notes, it's a good idea to do a quick Google search and check out some examples of great release notes put together by some of your favourite companies. This will help you take note of what works and what doesn't.
It's worthwhile to consult your marketing and/or content marketing teams in the early stages of putting together release notes in order to determine whether there are any branding elements or visuals that you can bring out in your release notes.
Pro Tip: It's a good idea to discuss how your release notes will be distributed. You'll have to decide between e-mails, blog posts, social media, in-app updates, app store updates, or a mixture!
...there you have it! Your release notes will be ready to go in no time. Your end users will take note and appreciate it... trust us!