How to Use Keywords to Create the Best Job Posting

BY THE TALENTDASH TEAM | January 18, 2017

With over 100 million job searches carried out each month in Google alone, the need for searchable and relevant information in your job posting is more important than ever.

The modern day job seeker is an enterprising soul that knows the true value of keywords when starting the long hard search for a new position. They understand that certain words relative to their experience and qualifications will yield better results in search engines. In fact, the average person now has a much firmer grasp on how Google and its contemporaries work than they did five years ago.

All the above can lead us to only one conclusion – Keywords are to job postings as air is to humans; without them, your posting is quite literally dead in the depths of the internet’s unsearchable content.

So what’s the best strategy to adopt?

Do your keyword homework
It’s all about research. First, you need to find out what phrases are relevant to your job posting and then try to figure out the terms your potential candidates might use to find it. Depending on your experience within a particular niche this part may get a little tricky. We all know what terms a driver or office manager might use in their job search, but an astrophysicist is a whole new kettle of fish.

Brainstorm some words and terms that you feel are specific to the industry the position is in and even the job itself. The ideas you come up with might not be enough to write a clear and relevant job posting, but there’s an easy way to find further keyword phrases that are guaranteed to get results.

Google’s Adwords Keyword Planner helps you find similar and related terms to those you enter. The great thing about this tool is that you can see exactly how popular each term is and if it is worth using in your posting.

Unfortunately, Google will only allow full access to those that have an active Adwords account. However, there are other options as listed here on Search Engine Journal.

Stay specific
During your research and of course when you are writing your job posting it’s vital to be as specific as possible in your keyword phrases. For example

• Marketing job – broad and doesn’t specify a niche
• Industrial marketing job – specific and targets particular candidates

Using such specific terms means that you will have less competition giving your ad or listing a better chance of ranking highly.

Examples of specific phrases to use include

• Location – where the job is based
• Company brand – terms that are associated with a company and are well-known
• Industry – the terms and keywords that are relative to the niche
• Alternate job titles – digital marketer/content marketer

Know your candidates’ habits
Like the Maasai tribesmen understand the lions they hunt, so too should you understand the candidates you seek. Know their habits, particularly when it comes to keyword terms and phrases, and you stand a fighting chance of adding them to your talent pool.

There are six criteria that the vast majority of job seekers have in mind when they peruse jobs listings. These are 

• Field or Industry – where their experience comes from
• Job title – their preferred role
• Location – is it a commutable distance
• Company names – those that are recognizable within their field
• Skills and industry-specific terms/tools – This validates their candidacy
• Job type – full-time, part-time, contract

You may have noticed that some of these terms are the exact same as our specific phrases to use, and no, we’re not a broken record.

Understanding these habits is key (pun intended) to creating a relevant job listing that your candidates will have no trouble in finding. So, if a little repetition ensures that the message gets through, then so be it.

Keep the job title simple
Buffer calls them happiness heroes yet most call them customer support, but which term do you think a candidate will tap out on their keys in their hunt for a job?

No matter how cool the job titles may be within the company, it doesn’t really make sense to use quirky titles in a job listing. Stick to the generic job titles used throughout the industry and save the imaginative titles for the onboarding process. After all, this is about using keywords, right?

And whatever you do, do not abbreviate a job title. It doesn’t matter how many characters it takes up; you need to write that job title in full.

Where to put your keywords
Okay so you’re obviously going to try and get one or two into the title of your job listing but don’t stop there. The job description is also a great place for dropping in a few alternative key phrases and words. You can even add them to your company description too.

However, and this is a critical point, avoid keyword stuffing like the bad smell that it is. It’s an outdated attempt at fooling search engines into ranking your listing higher. And it simply won’t work. Google is pretty smart; you should be too.

Write your listing and read it a few times. If there are any words that you feel are a little repetitive then swap them out for some of the keywords you found when doing your homework. The whole idea is that your posting should read well and have some human feeling to it. If you think it sounds robotic, the chances are Google’s algorithms will think so too and your listing will never see the light of a candidate’s screen.

A job posting is an essential element in any recruitment campaign and failing to craft one that is easy to find is tantamount to blaspheming the gods of recruitment. However, invest your time and efforts into creating a searchable masterpiece and there’s no doubt your talent pool will grow and that elusive perfect candidate will become much easier to find.

Now you have figured out how and what are the keywords for your recruitment strategy, the next step is to put it into action; You will be able to see how effective are your keywords to find your ideal candidates.  at TalentDash and you will be able to get 8 candidates for free, make that dash with us now!

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