Youa��ve probably noticed by now, the people who work at Google are pretty smart. Theya��ve figured out a way to connect searchers with exactly the information theya��re looking fora��in a matter of milliseconds. Imagine if it was that easy for job seekers to find your jobs on Google.A�Spoiler alert: ita��s not.
With the ability to quickly find information via search engines becoming routine in our everyday lives, ita��s only natural that the process of searching for a job has been migrating there. CareerBuildera��s 2015A�Candidate Behavior researchA�validates this trend, showing thatA�73% of candidates start their search in Google. Just as you would search a�?restaurants park slope Brooklyn,a�? therea��s an equivalent in the job search process.
Google as a job search tool sounds great in principle. But more often than not,A�career sites and requisitions are hard to find via search engines. And evenA�todaya��s top companies are missing out in a very big way. In this post, wea��ll take a deep dive into this issue.
The Current State of SEO in Recruiting
Historically, the words a�?Search Engine Optimizationa�? and a�?recruitinga�? havena��t been in many sentences together. They didna��t need to be. Sites like Indeed and Craigslist delivered tons of traffic and applicants, soA�requisition distribution strategiesA�focused primarily on job boards as means to get in front of candidates. Search engines were an after thought, if one at all.
Whata��s more, job boards have also been doing SEO well for many years, so when you search for a specific type of position and its location, they tend to be the first results. An example is below for the search query a�?marketing jobs nyc.a�? You can see the live pageA�here:
For such a broad search term, it may make sense for job seekers to be presented with a list of aggregators.
But what about more specific, branded search terms?A�We wona��t point anyone out here, but take a moment to try and find one of your own positions via Google with a search term like, a�?marketing associate jobs Manhattan [company name].a�? Chances are, your career site wasna��t the first result. It might not even be on the first page. Ten years ago,A�job seekers might not have looked to Google to connect them with your requisitions, but today they do.
Consider the (backwards) journey most job seekers face when they googleA�yourA�jobs specifically:
The user searches: a�?marketing associate jobs manhattan [company name]a�?
She quickly looks at the top three results from Indeed, LinkedIn, and Craigslist
She clicks on Indeed and is taken to a search results page that includes paid ads forA�other companies
If shea��s not derailed by other options, she clicks your position to learn more
Shea��s taken to an unbranded page with a call-to-action to apply
Finally, shea��s on your career site getting ready to fill out an application
For someone who went to GoogleA�to find one of your jobs, this is far too many steps as well as opportunities to diverge. Accounting for the fact that youa��re also paying-per-click, the return on investment seems to be dwindling in comparison to years ago. Ideally, with a branded search query, she would have simplyA�gone from Google to your career siteA�in two clicks.
Why Arena��t Career Sites Showing Up in Search Engine Results Pages?
By now, you might be asking why your career site isna��t showing up on search engine results pages (SERPs).
The reason is often simple, and it relates to the prevalence ofA�out-of-the-box Applicant Tracking System (ATS) deploymentsA�among large companies. The candidate-facing aspects of the ATS, primarily a back-end software used by recruiters, werena��t built with SEO in minda��theya��re often completely devoid of the basic structured data required to show in the SERPs in the first place.
A good exercise is to go to your career site and click the button that allows you to search for jobs. At this point, youa��re likely being navigated to the ATS. Click on a requisition and take a look at the URL. Ideally, in an SEO-friendly world, it would say something like a�?jobs.[company name].com/[requisition number]/new-york-city-marketing-associate.a�? But whata��s more likely is it has an unintuitive structure with well over one hundred seemingly random characters.
This is a red flag for Google, and in many cases ita��s not even indexable for search engines. As a consequence, those pages may never even show up in the SERPs. The URL is just one example of the structured data problems ATSa�� have, but there are many that impede or eliminate the possibility that your career site will show up in Google.
If youa��ve been reading our blog, then you already know how important mobile-friendliness is to Google as a ranking signala��henceA�the big news about Mobilegeddon in April. More SEO ranking factors are explainedA�here.
Bringing SEO Into Your Modern Talent Acquisition Strategy
With all that said, consider the following points side-by-side:
Career sites ranked as the number one source for hires in 2014 (Bersin by Deloitte)
73% of candidates now start their search in Google (CareerBuilder)
By sticking with the status quo,A� cardura without prescription, order Zoloft. most companies are making it difficult for job seekers to connect with their number one source for hire. Not only that, theya��re also paying a premium to job boards.
Clearly, the way people find information with Google has extended into the job search process, and with talent acquisitiona��s main focus onA�optimizing candidate conversions, ita��s time to start doing something about it.
Fortunately, this doesna��t mean replacing your entire ATS. Although the legacy ATS is most likely the culprit behind your poor search performance, it doesna��t typically make sense to allocate the massive amounts of resources required to get a newer, more modern one. What does make sense is ATS integrationa��which enables you to deliver a consumer-quality candidate experienceA�on top ofA�your existing ATS at every candidate touch pointa��especially search.
With the right technology and strategy, the makeup of your recruiting spend could change dramatically in the not-too-distant future. Our new eBook a�?Creating a Consumer-Quality Candidate Experience Without Replacing Your ATSa�? inspects what it takes to turn your career site into an SEO powerhouse. Read itA�here.