Top tips to increase applications through your recruitment website

At RecWebs we pride ourselves on being expert recruitment website builders. Streamlining the recruitment process, increasing applications and, ultimately, converting those applications into quality hires is at our core. We apply our years of recruitment website build experience to create websites with one goal – to attract and convert talent.

So what are the key aspects focused on when building a recruitment website? How do we get a candidate to go from opening your homepage to applying for one or maybe several of your jobs? How do we increase applications?

1. Clear objectives 

It is essential that you begin by asking yourself a number of questions as these will inform the shape of your website. What is the main purpose of the website? Are you recruiting for one single job type or do you have a range of different job offers? If you are a direct employer your objectives will be different from those of a recruitment agency. 

Direct employers will want to raise the brand awareness of their company, projecting their work culture, illustrating career progression, non-financial benefits, and so on, before detailing the role on offer. Recruitment agencies should display expertise in their particular areas of recruitment and their ability to successfully place candidates in new roles. This reassures visitors to your website and establishes confidence in your business.
In both cases, the main objective is to encourage candidates to quickly and effectively apply for a job on your website.    

2. User journey planning

From the moment a candidate lands on your website it is imperative that you lead them on a journey that ultimately ends in them applying for a job. It is worth considering more than one user journey for different visitor types. Take a look at your user personas and plan accordingly.  

The ‘Active and Decided’ Job Seeker

This job seeker is aware of your job offering and is visiting your website with the sole purpose of applying for that job. This type of user should be led as quickly as possible to the application page. 

The ‘Undecided’ Job Seeker

This job seeker is typically browsing for jobs, unsure as to what to apply for. Here your approach will differ depending on your type of business. As a direct employer you want to take the user on a journey during which they read about your company, your values and success stories, followed by the role you are recruiting for and the profile required, and finally reinforcing everything they’ve read with real testimonials. If you’ve done your job right, the user is now applying for your job.

As a recruitment agency, you are playing the numbers game. Offering a wide range of jobs is the first step but you also want candidates to be able to easily search your database of jobs. Make it simple for them to find the right opportunity by properly categorising jobs and paying attention to job copy to increase a job’s ‘searchability’. By doing this you will up the chances of your jobs being found by the right people and, ultimately, of top talent applying for them. At the same time, you want to establish your agency as both approachable and industry-leading. Take users to your ‘About’ page, let them put some faces to names, talk about your services and your approach to placing candidates (case studies are a great way to do this), and then direct them to your perfectly organised and categorised jobs page. 

The ‘Passive’ Job Seeker

You’re definitely going to have to work harder for this one. The user possibly stumbled onto your website by chance; they’re not actively searching for a job but since they landed on your page they might as well take a look. This is your moment to shine – you want them to read about your company, your achievements and your industry knowledge, all of which establishes you as an industry leader. Running an active blog section is a great way to do this and may even be the reason they ended up on your website in the first place. You might not secure this user on the first try but you have planted the seed of brand trust and confidence and they will hopefully return to find out more and eventually apply for your jobs. 

3. Retargeting

Securing a candidate application for one of your jobs is great but you need more than that. We all know that not every application ends in a job so it is vital to ensure that your website visitors are applying to multiple jobs on your website. The secret here is to allow users to easily find a range of job offers that match their needs, experience and skillset and encourage them to apply for each one.

Related jobs

This is where a well organised and categorised jobs page becomes so important, ensuring that candidates don’t just find the specific job typed into the search bar but all other jobs related to it too. This could be the same job but in a different location, a job higher up the career ladder that the candidate hadn’t previously considered, or a job with a similar title. When they apply for a job, follow with a list of other jobs that they might be interested in. The longer they stay on your website, the higher the chances of them applying for more jobs. 

Convert visitors to users

You don’t want candidates to visit once, leave and never return. Ideally, candidates will be returning weekly, or even daily, to apply for more jobs. To increase your chances of this happening, and make them active users on your website rather than one-off visitors, it is a good idea to give them the option to register an account where they can manage CVs, track their applications, and set up email alerts. Giving users the ability to receive a regular email with job offers related to specific keywords is a great way to encourage job seekers to return to your website with regularity.

4. Have a fall-back plan

There will be times that you don’t have any jobs that match the candidate’s needs and credentials at the time of their visit. It would then be all too easy to lose them forever as they find a competitor’s site on which to search instead. You don’t want them to think that you’re not the solution to their job search. To prepare for this eventuality it is worth considering accepting ad-hoc CV submissions. This is where your hard work in establishing your industry expertise pays off. By gaining the confidence of job seekers, they will entrust you with finding them the perfect job by leaving their CV with you – and you will start to build up your own candidate database from which you can draw top talent when the right opportunities arise.