How can I make my job advert search engine friendly?
Posting your job on Monster and helping us make your jobs rank highly on Google, Yahoo! and the various other Internet search engines is vital to the success of your recruitment campaign
SEO (or Search Engine Optimisation) is the art of ensuring a web page appears within results when a user searches for a certain keyword or keyword phrase. The major search engines have constantly changing algorithms that dictate the order of their list, and in order to have a chance of ranking highly there are a few simple rules you must follow.
The main thing people look for in search results (and the link they will hopefully click on) is the title tag. All jobs posted on Monster have an automated title tag which is made up of:
<Job Title> Jobs <Location>
If this is not the case with your job postings, you can amend your template by contacting our technical support team.
Search engines also take into account how relevant the main content of the page is by counting the number of times keywords and key phrases appear. There are hundreds of other page elements that go into deciding how well your job listing will rank, but there are some quick steps you can take to improve your ranking.
Use more effective job titles
Put yourself in the shoes of the jobseeker. What words would they search if they were looking for the job you're advertising? If you use terms that job seekers would actually search for, you increase the chances of them being spotted.
Keyword terms also appear in bold on the search results page, increasing the chance they will be noticed and clicked on by the user.
- Don't use – Tier 2 Policy Implementation Architecture Strategist
- Do use – Senior Policy Advisor
Adding a key skill to your job title will help it appeal to a more specific audience.
- Don't use – Web Developer
- Do use – Java Web Developer
Steer clear of using job titles that are cryptic or in question form. They won't appear under the search terms you want and they also dissuade users from clicking.
- Don't use – Want to work in a bank?
- Do use – Bank Cashier
Use better targeted locations
The location you provide in your job listing is combined with the job title to make up the page title. Never be tempted to enter the location within the job title field otherwise you will end up with a title tag that looks like:
Sales Manager – Docklands, London Jobs Docklands, London
This will be considered as keyword spamming and push your job lower down the rankings.
While posting your job on Monster, when prompted to tell us where you job is located you'll want to provide two key bits of information in order to improve SEO.
- The postcode (in order to sync with our Google Maps feature)
- The nearest town or city (with county where appropriate)
The Title Tag shown in search engines is limited to 90 characters so long strings of locations tend to have a negative impact.
- Don't use – Reading, Berkshire, M4 corridor, Thames Valley, South East
- Do use – Reading, Berkshire
You can be more specific about the location within the actual job description, but for the purposes of SEO, you want to rely on one key location that will match the area in which you expect most candidates to be searching.
Have a good opening paragraph
The first 155 characters of your job description is highly important for the success of your job posting. Rather than launching into a description of your company, provide a short overview of the role, repeating the job title once, the location once and a couple of other related key skills. If you can also fit in another instance of the words that make up your job title then you should see a benefit.
It's important to ensure that this forms a coherent sentence rather than a keyword list as search engines reward well constructed opening content. In a similar way to the title tag, the keywords searched by the user will appear as bold in the search engine results, increasing the chances of users clicking on your link.
So a good example introduction (with the key phrases in bold and related terms underlined) for a Sales Executive job based in Warrington is:
“We are looking for a Sales Executive with experience in the pharmaceutical industry to join our specialist sales team in Warrington, Cheshire."
Repeat your key phrases
The remainder of your job description should also contain your keywords and key phrases in a variety of ways. Taking your job title as the most important, make sure it appears at least three and no more than six times within your job description.
Sentences such as “The responsibilities of the Marketing Manager…” or “As you will have proved through previous Marketing Manager roles…” are good ways of fitting key terms in without them looking forced.
You also want to have each word from your key phrase appearing on it's own a few more times. So, for example, if you use the term ‘Marketing' in relation to a qualification required from candidates, you will be able to retain a well written description with a healthy number of relevant keyword instances.
You want your key phrase (or words related to your key phrase) to make up 5-10% of the total page content. So within a 200 word job description, that's between 10 and 20 times. This may sound like a lot, but if you can mention the term ‘Marketing Manager' six times, the words ‘Marketing' and ‘Manager' a few times each and the job location a few more times then you will have a well optimised page.
Keyword spamming is a practise heavily discouraged by search engines so trying to increase your ranking by simply listing related job titles, skills and locations is likely to see you disappear from the rankings.