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Knockback is a Special Modifier. If a weapon or item has the Knockback modifier, any hits that landed upon a target will knock the target back a certain distance. If the target is against a wall or another obstacle, it will not be knocked back. The distance is set so multiple knockback modifiers have no effect. The target must be hit to knock it back, missing will do nothing.

Knockback can be either helpful or detrimental, depending on the situation your hero is in. If, for example, the hero is a ranged physical attacker, such as the Amazon, or a Throwing Barbarian, Knockback is helpful because most monsters will not be able to reach you, leading to surviving many fights without the need for healing. On the flip side of the coin, if the character is a Zealot, Knockback may be a bit more annoying, as your specialties lie in fast, powerful melee strikes. Knocking said enemies into a wall can remedy this, and in addition, causes their hit recovery animations to begin, effectively 'stunlocking' with no ability to retaliate.

Although Knockback works on most monsters in the game, Act Bosses/Uniques possess full immunity to it.

Special Modifiers
AbsorptionCrushing BlowDeadly StrikeDemon HealDefense vs. MissilesIgnores Target's DefenseIncreased Blocking SpeedKnockbackOpen WoundsPiercingSlows Target
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