How to optimise your job adverts for Google for Jobs

Google for Jobs is an incredibly useful tool for recruiters, offering a free way to increase organic traffic to your website and of course your jobs. We explain how to optimise your jobs for Google for Jobs and highlight some important new updates.

A huge number of candidates use search engines as a tool in their job search, with recent research finding that 52% of Millennials undertake Google searches as their primary job hunting approach. It is undeniable that ranking highly on search engines is incredibly important to the success of your talent acquisition campaigns. Utilising search engines and, in particular, Google for Jobs has the added advantage that candidates will be sent to your recruitment website, meaning you have the opportunity to capture their data and allowing them to see other jobs you have on your jobs page.

Optimising Google for Jobs on your website can drive talent to your jobs and be a valuable source of organic candidate applications, yet the RecWebs Recruitment Website trends Benchmark Report found that only 41% of analysed websites had applied the data structure. Of that 41%, 19% showed one or more errors that compromise the system and could lead to jobs not being displayed. As a zero cost source of talent attraction, optimising for Google for Jobs should be on every recruiter’s to-do list.  

On Google for Jobs, your website will be displayed alongside results for the same job on different platforms

What is Google for Jobs?

Launched in the UK in 2018, Google for Jobs acts as an aggregator, compiling job listings from both job boards, recruitment websites and careers pages and displaying them in a Jobs section within the search results. Just as on your own jobs page, Google’s jobs tool allows users to filter their search by category, date posted, location, company type and more. Candidates can view the ad from within Google for Jobs and then click to apply through your website. As the function allows for more targeted searches, it will help you attract more motivated candidates who are actively looking for your type of job.

How to set up your jobs for Google for Jobs

In order for Google to find your jobs and rank them in relevant searches, there are several details that must be included in your job listings – salary, location, job title, skills, responsibilities, and qualifications. In-built SEO tools such as those on all RecWebs websites will help you to optimise your jobs so that they rank well in Google for Jobs. There are a few steps to take, the main one being including job posting structured data in all job listings as this is what makes your jobs eligible to appear in Google’s search results for jobs. It’s also important to use and update sitemaps and make your web pages indexable.

Follow SEO best practices

General SEO best practices are relevant to any content on your website, including your jobs page. Always include optimised, keyword-oriented and compelling page titles and meta descriptions, reduce page load speed times, regularly publish fresh content (and remove outdated content, including expired jobs), optimise images, and generally improve user experience.

Specific to job postings, it is essential that job titles are standardised (this is not the place for quirky, creative names), concise and without extraneous information tagged onto them, e.g. benefits. Including location and salary information – the more specific the better – is also key to helping your jobs rank highly.  

Mobile optimisation

The RecWebs Recruitment Website Trends Benchmark Report found that 43% of users visit recruitment websites on a mobile device yet not all websites are mobile optimised.

In an age where we all use our mobiles and tablets to browse the internet on the go, it is vital that websites are optimised for small screens and compatible with the most popular browser and operating systems used by those devices.

This became even more important as of March 2021, when Google switched to mobile-first indexing of all websites. That means that it’s now the mobile version of websites that the search engine uses to index and rank in its results. In other words, if your website is not mobile-friendly, its ranking will be severely affected and your jobs will be less likely to be seen in search results.

Upcoming Google for Jobs updates

Announced in July and due to be implemented soon, Google’s new updates are designed to further improve the quality and accuracy of results for job seekers. They are based on feedback from tens of thousands of job seekers from across the world on their experiences of applying for jobs online.

The first update concerns speed and ease of application, with the launch of a new ‘direct apply’ property for those websites that offer a direct apply experience, i.e. a short and straightforward application process.

Google is also adding a new editorial content policy, including guidance around obstructive text and images, ‘excessive and distractive’ ads, or content that adds no value to the job posting. Ensuring basic grammar rules are adhered to is also key. The idea is to improve results, creating the best experience for users. Ultimately, it means happier candidates who arrive at jobs that are relevant to them – a win for both recruiters and candidates.

Following these guidelines will help increase your ranking in Google searches but it is important not to overthink it all and to always keep the job seeker in mind. Google isn’t trying to outwit you, they simply work with the searcher in mind, ensuring they offer results that match the search parameters as closely as possible. As long as you target your copy towards your candidates and keep the ad concise, clear and well structured, search engines will be likely to pick it up on relevant searches. Information is only valuable if it is highly relevant. Ultimately, it comes down to good user experience and honest job posts. Do that and Google will reward you.

If you found this article useful, you’d likely benefit from reading these helpful articles and our Recruitment Website Trends Benchmark Report too:

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