HR and Recruiting

Optimize your job listings for Google searches

Written by Kate Lopaze

By now, you’re probably pretty familiar with terms like “search engine optimization” (SEO), and have been working toward getting the most keyword bang for your buck in your organization’s job posts. As a rule, Google has made us all think more about how to get what we want out of a search, or how to make sure our content is near the top of the list. Now Google is unleashing the next phase of that: Google for Jobs, a dedicated search tool for job seekers.l

What is Google for Jobs, exactly?

Google for Jobs is a search tool first rolled out in 2017, continually growing and expanding as Google adds new features. It’s an enhanced search algorithm that aggregates active job listings from career sites and job boards, cherry-picking them to match your search criteria. Users can filter jobs based on the job category, location, date posted, and the company information. The search function doesn’t (yet?) have the capability of helping the user to apply for said jobs, but instead directs the user to apply through either job sites (where one might already have an account/saved resume) or directly at the company itself.

Google for Jobs gets updated job listing information through “crawls,” or automated searches conducted by Google. The crawl searches company career sites directly, as well as job boards and other recruiting forums.

How can organizations optimize their listings?

If you want your jobs to feature prominently in user searches, that means more than maxing out your SEO keywords.

Be visible.

The first step is making sure that Google’s webcrawling robots can find your job listings to include them in users’ search results. One way to do this is to integrate directly with Google, if your company has its own Careers site. You should make sure that your site is not protected by a robots.txt file or robots meta tag, and that Googlebots can crawl your site.

Make sure you have enough information in your listings.

At a minimum, Google for Jobs requires the following info in a job listing in order to include it in search results:

  • Company name
  • Specific job title (like “Waiter” or “Feline Aerodynamics Engineer”)
  • Job description, at least one paragraph in length and formatted in HTML
  • Job location
  • Posting date
  • Expiration date of the posting (if applicable)

Without that information, your listing is not going to make the cut. If you want to take your listings to the next level, best practices should also include:

  • Type of employment (full-time, part-time, contract basis, etc.)
  • Salary range or a specific number, including currency type
  • The job’s requisition number in your Application Tracking System (ATS)
Check your reputation.

Google is rolling out new Google for Jobs features all the time, and recently that has included pulling company reviews from sites like Glassdoor. If you haven’t already, it’s time to do a survey of what people are saying about your company on employment review sites. Poor reviews can affect your Google for Jobs performance, and discourage potential applicants as well.

Standardize your logo

This is especially important if you’re going through third-party sites. You want to make sure that you’re uploading consistent, high-quality images of your logo to any sites that are going to be included in Google for Jobs crawls. Big, clear logos look much better in search results than small and/or blurry ones, and you want to stand out for all the right reasons.

If you’re looking for a way to boost the visibility of your job listings, Google for Jobs is a great way to do that. By making some minimal tech tweaks and investing time in your recruitment narrative, this is a feature that will help you reach the applicants you want.

About the author

Kate Lopaze

Kate Lopaze is a writer, editor, and digital publishing professional based in New York City. A graduate of the University of Connecticut and Emerson College with degrees in English and publishing, she is passionate about books, baseball, and pop culture (though not necessarily in that order), and lives in Brooklyn with her dog.