Google’s mission statement is, “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” And I think we can all agree, it has done a pretty good job so far. It currently handles at least two trillion searches per year and despite Microsoft recently offering to pay people to use Bing, Google is by far the most popular search engine.
And now Google are launching its new jobs search engine, Google for Jobs.
So what do we know about Google for Jobs so far?
- Google for Jobs will be released in the USA in Summer 2017 and then a international release.
- CEO Sundar Pichai explained that “while job seekers may be looking for openings right next door – there’s a big disconnect.” Google for Jobs aims to resolve this.
- Candidates will be able to refine their search by job title, category or type, full or part-time, location and date posted.
- Google for Jobs will use machine learning and AI to group related job listings so a search for “sales assistant” will return results including retail associate, thus, making it a more efficient candidate experience.
- There will be a “one click to apply” option so candidates will be able to apply directly on the platform.
- Rather than competing, Google for Jobs will initially partner with LinkedIn, Facebook, Careerbuilder, Monster, Glassdoor, and other services.
- The search result will appear at the top of the page as a rich snippet, as shown in the example below:
At the moment there is a lot of speculation surrounding how much the new search feature will impact the recruitment industry but two things are clear:
- The search volume i.e. the need is there – 30% of all Google searches are job related (that’s a huge 300bn a year)
- Google has the resources to make this a resounding success
So, while traditional job boards are anxiously waiting to see what the full impact of Google for Jobs will be, recruitment agencies can safely assume that if search engine optimisation (SEO) wasn’t already a priority for their own websites/job boards, it is now.
Whether Google for Jobs reaches its full potential or not, having an optimised website and, in particular, job pages is imperative. Here’s 4 SEO tips to make sure you’re making it easy for Google and, therefore, your candidates to find your website and posted job ads:
The Top 4 Recruitment Agency Website SEO Tips
The speed of your website is crucial to your overall ranking on Google and this will affect everything from blog pages to job listings. If you want to get a clear picture of how your website is performing on desktop and mobile, use Google’s free to use online tool, PageSpeed Insights. By inserting your website URL (e.g. http://www.recruitmentcompany.co.uk), PageSpeed Insights performs a basic analysis of how fast your website is, and returns a neat score out of 100 and gives you recommendations to resolve these issues.
If your website scores below 80/100, you should give these recommendations to your web developer to improve your website as soon as possible. By doing so, you will almost certainly see an increase in organic traffic and you’ll be prepared for when Google for Jobs impacts the market.
NB: Organic traffic is visitors who come to your website via a search engine. So this won’t include paid advertising, social media, direct or any other method.
Content for search engines
Google has become adept at recognising what topic a piece of content is about and just like Google for Jobs is proposing, it uses machine learning to group together related searches to better answer a search query. However, it still relies heavily on keywords so make sure your content, including your job post listings, includes appropriate keywords in the URL, title, heading and body of the content to clearly indicate to Google what this content is addressing.
To rank more highly, think about the exact phrase or “longtail keyword” that your candidates will use when searching for jobs or job advice. Although the search volume will be lower for exact phrases, the intent will also be higher, giving it a higher chance of converting into an application.
Content for users
Having said this, your content also needs to be user friendly so packing it full of keywords is not the answer. To have a successful job advert that people apply to, it needs to be engaging as well as hitting keywords. If you do manage to create job adverts that earn backlinks from credible sources, this will send another indicator to Google that your job listings are valuable and this should affect your ranking.
NB: Backlinks are when another website directly links to your website. The more credible the website, the more seriously Google will consider the backlink.
3. Optimise For Mobile
We all recognise the importance of mobile for recruitment and no doubt we’ve seen the statistics to back it up. What you may not realise is that Google will actively penalise websites for not being optimised for mobile. By having a look at the score and recommendations on Google Pagespeed Insights for mobile, you can see the major pitfalls of how Google views your website’s mobile experience.
This may be another job for your web developer but, with the growing millennial workforce, a mobile first strategy is something to take advantage of sooner rather than later.
4. Job Advert Schema
We cannot be certain how Google for Jobs will rank job listings but, as with its normal search function, it is likely to reward content that is structured and detailed for search engines. Schema is the code that allows Google to easily categorise the context of information primarily surrounding people, locations, events etc. For example, you can tell Google that Central Manchester relates to the job you’re advertising for – not just a location in the North of England.
Google for Jobs could revolutionise the way in which candidates search, view and apply for jobs so it’s time to make sure your website is optimised and indicating to Google, at every opportunity, that you have a trusted and valuable website. By adapting to new technology quickly, your recruitment agency can gain the competitive advantage.
With new technology on the rise, it might be time to invest in new recruitment software. But, before you make that decision, download our 3 step guide.