Full Technical Guide

Google for Jobs offers an unrivalled opportunity to become much more visible to candidates and increase direct hiring via your careers site. As it's currently a free platform, this is a great chance to organically boost traffic to your jobs.

The pioneering search functionality of Google for Jobs is based on machine learning, demonstrating how technology is continuing to evolve.

It's crucial to ensure that your careers site/ATS is correctly marked-up and also that your jobs have all of the necessary information for candidates. You should talk to your provider or get in touch with us today for an in-depth audit to check where you are versus Google for Jobs compatibility.

When a user searches for a job, Google for Jobs detects this and shows a search box.

Within this search box, a range of filtering choices are accessible.

The first three choices will be a link to:

  1. The general job area.
  2. Jobs listed in the last three days.
  3. Full time jobs within that specialism.

Three jobs are always present within the search results, while other links in the top bar are to connected disciplines. Location filtering is also supported so entering “catering jobs London”, for example, will bring up results from that specific area.

If a user was to click on anything in the box, they are then taken to the complete Google for Jobs interface where they’re then free to browse jobs etc.

Clicking the Google logo will take you back to the normal search results. Beneath this logo and the search bar is a section with two sets of further filtering selections.

The first set of options are:

  • Category
  • Title
  • Location
  • Date posted
  • Type
  • Company type
  • Employer

By clicking on any of these options, the results remain unaffected. It simply changes the labels which sit directly underneath (and by clicking on these labels, you can then influence the results).

For example, selecting ‘Category’ will bring up a number of labels to choose from. Hovering over these or clicking the slider icon in the top left will then reveal even more labels.

A job posting consists of different elements. These include:

  1. Job title.
  2. Share button.
  3. Company name, logo and location.
  4. Choice of application providers.
  5. Advert age.
  6. Commute time.
  7. Salary range.
  8. Working hours e.g. full time/part time.
  9. Full job description with a button to expand the text.
  10. Salary comparison.
  11. Marked up employer reviews.
  12. Full location.
  13. A link to: the employer's website, other Google Job listings for the employer, and a normal Google search for the employer.

These can be seen in the job listing to the right.

There's several ways to ensure your jobs are listed on Google for Jobs: using an ATS which includes Google for Jobs implementation, posting your jobs on a partner aggregator or job board, or optimising your own job adverts so Google can index the content in the correct way.

One of the best routes may be to make certain that your job listings have the necessary information for Google to include you in its search results. Although this isn't highly complex, you will need to be familiar with basic web development, such as HTML. Consult your web developer if you're unsure about any of this content.

Before delving into the specifics of how to optimise your job content though, there is certain criteria that you must meet.

Structured data is text which is placed in website code, for the benefit of search engines. This ensures that Google has all the information it needs to then list your jobs.

Google supports three types of structured data: RDFa, Microdata and JSON-LD. Google generally uses JSON-LD but any of these data types should work. We recommend using JSON-LD as it will allow you to copy and paste the necessary information into your site as a single block of script.

Make sure that the information in this mark-up matches what’s on your page exactly. Including extra information could get you excluded.

Mandatory information for structured data

While some information is optional, Google requires the following:

  • The date of the job posting and when the listing expires.
  • Job title (Google advise not to try and cram in search keywords or calls to action here – keep it simply as the title of the job).
  • The name of your company (this can also include your website).
  • The location of the job (Google specifics that you should use addresses at street level but some advertisers have just stated the town).
  • A full description of the job, formatted properly in HTML (line breaks, headings etc.)

Not required, but recommended information:

  • Employment type (full time/part time/contractor/temporary etc.)
  • Salary (the actual salary as hourly/weekly/monthly/yearly, or as a minimum and maximum value).

Crawling is when an automated software program discovers web pages by following links on the web. This is how search engines determine what content to add to their results. Sometimes there are limits on how many times Google can visit, or ‘crawl’, your site.

To enable a smooth integration with Google for Jobs, it’s imperative not to limit the rate in which Google crawls your site. For example, if you’ve set up any limits within Google Search Console, these will need to be turned off.

There are a few ways of doing this:

  • Remove the URL for the job (and ensure this then leads to a 404 to show search bots the URL is no longer valid).
  • Remove the mark-up from the page itself.
  • ‘Noindex’ the page – this lets search engines know to remove this page from search results.

These points demonstrate that filling out all fields with as much detail as possible is vital. Failing to do so could result in your jobs not getting listed.

When your jobs are correctly indexed, you’ll see this information in a brand new section of Google Webmaster Tools.

An XML sitemap is different from a normal user sitemap in that it’s seen only by search engines. We advise the following:

  • Don’t duplicate jobs in your sitemap.
  • Don’t include search results pages.
  • Ensure your job listings are accessible by Google (don’t list jobs on orphaned pages or anywhere that’s hidden or can’t be traced).
  • Update your sitemap at least daily (and hourly at the most).
  • Make certain that your “last modified” data is accurate so that Google acknowledges these changes.

  • SEO for Google for Jobs differs from the norm within the recruitment industry. Whereas before the focus was on optimising landing pages and not specific job posts, the SEO of these job posts will now become much more significant.
  • This importance stems from the fact that these posts will be closely accessed and crawled, so you should consider the types of search terms that candidates will be using.
  • One way of doing this is to produce a search vocabulary (carrying out keyword research just as you would with traditional SEO) ahead of creating your job adverts. In addition, as we’ve mentioned before, ensuring your job listings are as detailed as possible is a huge factor.

The interface will generate even more aggregated sections within search results, which could affect how visible normal AdWords and organic listings are. This could then affect website traffic.

Currently, there isn’t a premium version of Google for Jobs, so the results generated are completely organic and ranked in terms of relevance. However, we predict that Google may launch a more PPC based marketing model as the interface grows.

There are also implications for other candidate marketing channels, such as SEO, job boards, aggregators and AdWords campaigns:

Most of the time, employers will receive minimal traffic from non-branded search queries compared to branded search terms. Research into how Google responds to a combination between the two indicates that employers’ sites could actually appear below Google for Jobs results. If this is the case for most employer searchers, employers could lose a great deal of search engine traffic.

Due to the nature of Google for Jobs, candidates will be given the choice of which site to visit for a job. While advertising on a range of job boards provides users with multiple options for your single job search result, it doesn’t guarantee that job adverts will be delivered to several candidate touchpoints. It will simply provide partners for a candidate to apply on the same touchpoint.

That means using a range of job boards may no longer widen your recruitment net, but a well-chosen advert could generate the same amount of impressions as multiple adverts.

There’s been an increase in the number of employers using aggregators such as Adzuna and Indeed. Some of these depend on SEO and PPC for a large amount of traffic, and so we anticipate that these will be hit quite hard in terms of cost and availability of traffic.

Database-lead aggregators won’t be as affected, while affiliate site-based aggregators will see varied results. Aggregators with traffic from social sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn will be relatively unchanged. In short, aggregators should deliver less traffic at a higher cost.

Since the launch of Google for Jobs, some key trends have developed. Based on research so far, we expect advertisers will receive around 50% less traffic available to purchase through AdWords, while the cost of traffic has approximately doubled.

As a result, you might not be able to purchase the same amount of traffic, and you can expect AdWords campaigns to become more expensive.

If you’re currently using any large job boards or aggregators, it’s likely that your job listings are already included, whether you’re aware or not. Alternatively, if you’re using a leading ATS, it’s probable that they will add the mark-up to your site in the near future.

Although we anticipate that Google will end up monetising this service, you may well be paying more for AdWords and aggregators as a knock-on effect of not utilising Google for Jobs anyway.

We expect that candidates will flock to Google’s new search interface, resulting in less advertising spend and greater direct recruitment. Therefore, employers should strongly consider capitalising on this unique opportunity.

Be compatible with Google for Jobs

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