SEO and SEM for Career Websites: 5 Tips for Search Engine Marketing


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Many Company In the last few years, they were reluctant to push their own career website online - be it through social media or through search engine marketing. The latter was long neglected. 5 tips on how to do it better. Best of HR – Berufebilder.de®

Here writes for you:

Carsten Muendel muendelCarsten Mündel is an Online Marketing Manager at devolo AG.

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SEM, SEO, SEA - what's that?

Search engine marketing (also referred to as SEM for short) combines two disciplines: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) on the one hand, and Search Engine Advertising (SEA) on the other. What does that mean exactly? The former refers to the organic search result lists on Google and co., Ie the free, ad-free entries that are arranged according to a complex algorithm.

The SEA is about the paid entries above and next to the organic results to a search term. In this advertising form the advertiser usually pays per click on his ad, the final cost per click (CPC) is determined by an auction system and depends on the competition situation.

Search engine marketing for your own career website - 5 tips

Both disciplines offer the opportunity to attract potential applicants! The following five tips help implement a search engine marketing strategy:

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1. Structure and navigation

Search engines take many factors into account when arranging organic search results. The search engine robots “crawl” your website and weight the content. Pages that are frequently and conspicuously linked internally are classified as particularly important by the search engine in the context of the entire website. Only an almost invisible link from the footer will pass on little “strength” to the career portal. The following should be noted:

  • Internal linking: If the career pages are to go to Google, then the career area should be easy to find and linked from the homepage and other sites of the company web site. A pure linking from the footer helps the career side only insignificantly.
  • Overview Links: From the navigation of the career page, the overview pages should also be linked with the appropriate words, to which the page should ultimately also rank. This means that search engines can best be linked to the content of the linked page.
  • Tip: Linking the most important job categories from the home page or even from the main navigation (for example, as a dropdown menu under the item "Career") creates even more strength for the important category pages.

Especially for large companies that are constantly looking for reinforcements in many areas, it is advisable to create a fixed structure for the career website. Fixed overcategories with a large search volume should be created. An overview page with all marketing jobs or all jobs for mechanical engineers has great potential to achieve a ranking in exciting keyword combinations, such as “Marketing Jobs”

  • Tip: Also categories with study course names offer themselves as Landingpages. The selected categories should be permanently accessible and assigned to a fixed URL.

2. Clean on-page work

Both the category pages and the individual tenders should be cleanly programmed and take into account the important criteria of search engine optimization. These include, in particular, the following aspects:

  • Title - the “title tag” is an important ranking factor and also appears as the heading of your page in the search engine results. The important keywords must be placed here within 70 characters!
  • Headings - A clean identification of each subpage by headings is very advantageous. At best, an h1 heading should only be used once per page. Tip: Do not use headings for “styling” the fixed navigation elements.
  • Description - This serves as a brief description of the page content within the search results. This should be concise and in a nutshell and draw as many clicks as possible. The use of keywords is also recommended here, 160 characters should not be exceeded.
  • Tip: Make use of the names of the city in the succinct places like the title and in headlines - the combinations with job title and city names are often searched for in search engines and the right target audience is reached.

3. Deactivate tenders: forwarding and, if necessary, reactivating

Individual tenders are not permanently up-to-date. Therefore, occupied vacancies are often simply taken off the net. It usually makes sense to redirect the URL used to the overview page, because the job posting may be linked internally or externally.

Thus, the potential visitors do not land on an error page and the so-called “link power”, ie the strengthening of a subpage for Google through links from internal and external websites, is passed on to the target page of the redirect.

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This redirection usually occurs as 301 Redirect, if it should be a permanent forwarding. In special cases, an 302 forwarding, a temporary forwarding is useful if a URL is to be reused shortly.

If there is a regular requirement for certain positions, then it may be useful to always use the same URL for repeated calls! This may already have some links and therefore enjoys a basic trust in search engines and quickly recovers his former rankings after a temporary forwarding.

4. Use of external systems with a view to SEO

No question, HR software can be very useful and significantly improve the processes in the company. The decision to use a software solution in the first step is mostly independent of the SEO performance. At best, there is the possibility to reconcile both:

For this it is primarily necessary that the overview pages and the job advertisements are still on your own website and remain editable. The application process itself can then run through the system, but if the advertisement itself “hangs” in the software, then a ranking is very unlikely and, above all, difficult to influence yourself.

5. Use Google Adwords to find applicants

When you talk about Google Adwords, it's about paying ads over and next to Google's unpaid search results. This is the short-term way to make your own career website on Google for potential applicants directly searchable.

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This is typically paid per click on your own ad, so you pay directly and get visitors for your career website. When optimizing search engines, you initially invest time and money in order to permanently receive free visitors from the search engines in the medium term - often a basic decision.

  • In the first step, the company should concentrate on keyword advertising in search engines, so I do not want to discuss the “Display Network” area.
  • The key to success here are the keywords! As already mentioned above, Google Adwords also combines the job title with the company location Sense.

In the scarce ad text should be clear as quickly as possible, what awaits the potential candidate on their own website. On the one hand, one avoids paid clicks from inappropriate searchers and, on the other hand, leads suitable candidates to the appropriate job advertisement.

  • Tip: Think about your ad only to switch to certain regions!

At the end...

As a short summary, it can be said that search engine marketing offers a lot of potential for career websites. To be distinguished is the short-term and immediately effective advertising on paid advertisements and the long-term search engine optimization of the career portal.

The decision whether one or even both disciplines should be considered must be assessed very individually! One thing is very important for all measures in recruiting: The right success control! Google Adwords in particular offers a strong solution with “Adwords Conversion Tracking”. At best, every measure should be evaluated using web analysis tools such as Google Analytics!

Good luck with optimizing!

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  1. Robert

    By the way: In job advertisements, which come again and again, I would not only reuse the URL. I would leave the whole page online (although not always always linked). Since you can include a note that the job call is not up-to-date, but the user can more often preview.

    By the way, your redirection to the homepage is annoying.

    • Simone Janson

      Thanks for the hint! Is it not SEO harmful to reuse old texts?
      Sorry for the circumstance with the page update - at some point we saw no other way to make readers aware of our extended offer as a pop-up ...

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