Digital Recruiting: SEO for Job Listings


If you use job boards such as CareerBuilder or Monster or job aggregators such as Indeed or SimplyHired, you know the frustration that comes with trying to make your job stand out in the crowd. In our experience, optimizing your job listing, much the same way you optimize a web page, for search can make a meaningful difference in your application volume.

So, here are step-by-step instructions for optimizing job listings:

- The first step is to optimize you careers page on your company’s website. You should target keywords related to the position and the location of the posting. The job page will be crawled by search engines and displayed to potential candidates, so make sure the candidates can find your page! This is a cheap and effective way to attract candidates from the likes of Google and the aggregators such as Indeed. It is important to use dynamically generated meta tags within the job page title. It is also important to use keyword dense job descriptions that still effectively communicate the job to the candidate.

- The job description should be clear and in-depth. We have used a “day in the life” approach to great results. Instead of listing a string of responsibilities and qualifications, tell the candidate exactly what they will be doing on a daily basis. Information on job profiles should include responsibilities, duties, experience, company background, salary, location, etc., but it is critical to sell the job to potential candidates.

- When placing jobs on career boards such as Monster and Careerbuilder, it is important to understand how the board ranks jobs and to take advantage of that knowledge. For instance, on CareerBuilder, keywords drive ranking (even over freshness of the listing). Packing your job listing with the appropriate key words can make a huge difference. For your specific keywords, aim for 6 to 10 mentions in your job listing. Additionally, you should ensure that you select three industries and three job types to maximize impact. Finally, look and see what your competition is doing with titles and keywords and see where you might be able to take advantage.

- Now it is time to publicize your jobs. Using Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter is a great way to immediately advertise the job, and it is proven that social media helps pages get indexed faster by the search engines as well.

- The job listings should be sharing-friendly with options to print, tweet, email or share it on Facebook or LinkedIn. Also, its a good idea to make it easy for potential candidates to contact the company to ask questions or concerns about the opportunity. So, an email address or any other contact information will attract quality candidates.

Bottom line, treat your job listings like a marketer would treat a web page. Optimize your job listing for the search engines, know the rules of the game, and tell a compelling story to your candidates. Your application volumes will tell the story to you.