70% of Job Seekers Use Google: How to Optimize Job Posts for Search

I don’t need to tell you how ubiquitous search engines are in our daily lives. 93% of online experiences start with a search engine, and they’re used for just about everything, including finding a job. While there are countless search engines available ( about 160 worldwide as of 2020), Google is, hands down, the indisputable leader. In fact, a whopping 70% of people use Google to search for a job. To ensure qualified candidates can find you, it’s essential to optimize job posts for search, which I’ll explain how to do in-depth in this post.

Understand Google’s Logic

First, it’s important to have a basic understanding of how Google decides which job posts to display prominently and how their algorithm works from a recruiting perspective. There are, of course, countless variables and complexities, but recruiting expert Mortiz Kothe explains the nuts and bolts of it by saying the following:

“Google for Jobs works by pulling in job postings from a wide range of sources and choosing which ones to display. Those sources include company career pages and over 70 job boards, such as Monster, LinkedIn, ZipRecruiter, and CareerBuilder. Google for Jobs filters through all those sources and chooses just one listing per job post.”

He then goes on to say that Google uses the exact same information found on job boards and boils it down to a single job post, which is why “posting the same job on multiple job boards is now a waste of money” — at least if your primary goal is getting found by sales candidates on Google.

The bottom line here is that Google chooses just one of your job ads to post on their network. So there’s no use posting on several job boards because your exposure will be the same.

Include Critical SEO Information

After performing a ton of research and from personal experience, I can tell you that optimizing job posts for Google is pretty straightforward when compared to optimizing an entire website. With the latter, there are a mind-bending number of elements you need to address such as keywords, meta tags, internal links, external links, URLs, headers, and so on. But with job ads, they’re fairly minimal.

SHRM breaks it down to the essentials, which include:

  • Name of the brand posting the job
  • Job title
  • Job description, including responsibilities, qualifications, skills, working hours, education, and experience requirements
  • Job posting date
  • Location information for the job including full address
  • The expiration date for the job posting

Beyond that, they recommend including:

  • “The unique identifier for the job, usually the requisition number from the ATS
  • The type of employment—whether full-time, part-time, contractor, etc.
  • Base salary information in either a lump sum or range, including currency type and frequency of pay period”

As long as your job ad has this information, you should be in good shape, and it will give Google everything they need.

Connect Your Job Ad

Today’s recruiters have a significant advantage over those of the past because of one specific tool — Job Search on Google.

With it, you can connect your job postings to make sure they appear on Google. And it offers all the resources you need to do that. There are two ways to go about it. You can post from your website and use structured data that integrates with Google. Or, you can see if the third-party job board you use participates in the job search experience on Google.

If you post from your website, simply click on “Get started”…

and you’ll be directed to a page called “Add structured data to job postings.”

There they explain how to add structured data step-by-step and provide helpful tips to ensure your job ads get indexed.

You’ll also find a link to their job posting content policies and a Rich Results Test so you can see how the structured data would look in Google search results. Basically, everything you need to know is there.

If, however, you’re using a third-party job board like Monster, LinkedIn, ZipRecruiter, or CareerBuilder, you’ll want to check with them to confirm that they’re participating. ZipRecruiter, for example, has integrated with Google and saw 4.5x growth after doing so.

If the job board doesn’t participate, I suggest switching to a different one that does because it’s going to be difficult to gain any real traction with Google otherwise.

Follow SEO Best Practices

The last piece of the puzzle to optimize job posts for search is being aware of SEO best practices. If you’re familiar with regular SEO for optimizing websites, this should be straightforward, as there’s a lot of overlap.

These best practices include:

  • Performing keyword research to find keywords with a high search volume and low competition ( You can use the Google Keyword Planner for this)
  • Target those keywords by using them in the job title and peppering them throughout (without making it feel spammy)
  • Use bulleted lists (these make for easy skimming for job candidates, and Google loves them)
  • Include your location and salary as I mentioned earlier
  • Write simple, clear job listings, and avoid verbose industry jargon

I personally learn the best by looking at examples. That’s why I also recommend typing in a keyword phrase your target candidate would likely search for and check out the results. This will let you see what top-ranking companies are doing so you can mimic their approach. For example, after entering “saas sales representative jobs washington dc,” here’s what popped up.

And here’s what the first job ad looked like.

Optimize Job Posts for Search to Connect with Quality Candidates

With 7 out of 10 sales candidates turning to Google to look for jobs, it’s never been more important to maximize your exposure on this search engine powerhouse. While there’s no magic bullet, following the formula outlined above should give you the absolute best chance of ranking well. And that, in turn, should help you connect with quality candidates that can be assets to your organization.

Looking to fill your pipeline with A+ candidates quickly? Learn how HireDNA uses leading technology and science-based assessments to attract top sales candidates, with 92% reaching the top of their sales force within their first year.

4 of the Biggest Sales Recruiting Challenges in 2022 (And How to Overcome Them)

Let’s be honest. Finding quality salespeople has never been easy, and sifting a pile of resumes (the average position receives 118 applications), can be onerous. But 2022 has its own unique sales recruiting challenges that must be addressed.

In this post, I’ll break them down one-by-one based on recent data and provide actionable strategies on how to overcome them.

An Overview of the Top Sales Recruiting Challenges

In a joint study between LinkedIn and Jobvite, experts pinpointed a list of specific sales recruiting challenges based on feedback they received from recruiters. Here’s what their findings looked like.

Now let’s unpack the data from top to bottom.

1. New Hires Lacking Soft Skills

Above all else, a lack of soft skills among new hires is the number one challenge sales recruiters face in 2022 at 89%. This is something I covered in detail in my last post where I mentioned that hard skills are fairly easy to identify and quantify. But this isn’t usually the case with soft skills. In particular, soft skills like communication, collaboration, empathy, and rapport-building have been historically difficult to gauge.

Up until recently, most sales recruiters have simply relied on basic behavioral assessments and reading body language to analyze soft skills. But, unfortunately, that’s not always sufficient. Some ways to address this issue, however, are to first identify a handful of vital soft skills and make them your key areas of focus when recruiting.

There are also a few pieces of technology you can use to objectively analyze candidates. One example is eSkill which is ideal for assessing emotional intelligence such as communication and collaboration. Another is a sales recruiting platform like HireDNA which analyzes “sales DNA competencies” including emotional control, supportive beliefs, and the ability to handle rejection.

From there, HireDNA will provide you with a list of qualified sales candidates that are interview-ready.

2. Hiring Salespeople Who Didn’t First Appear to Fit

The second biggest challenge involves selecting candidates that didn’t initially seem to be assets to a company. According to the study, “77% of recruiters go back and hire candidates who at first didn’t appear to be a fit.” The issue is coming up with an effective way of pinpointing individuals who slipped through the cracks at first and incentivizing them to come on board.

As I mentioned in another article, there’s a small window of just 10 days on average in which you have to hire elite talent. After that, most have already found another position. So to be fully transparent, there will be many cases where the ship has already sailed and it’s simply too late.

That said, reaching out to quality candidates as soon as you realize their potential can sometimes lead to a hire. I also suggest focusing on the following incentives, if possible, as data shows they are the main things that attract candidates to new organizations.

3. Candidates Changing Their Minds

Here’s one of the sales recruiting challenges that can really drive companies crazy. You find A+ talent and get something lined up only to have a candidate change their mind at the last minute. And it’s an issue that happens more than you may think with 75% of sales recruiters saying they’ve experienced it at some point.

While there’s no magic bullet for ensuring this never happens to you, there are a few ways to reduce the likelihood of candidates changing their minds. First, be sure you have adequate incentives in place — ones that specifically zero in on what attracts candidates to a company (see the graphic above I just mentioned). Next, provide candidates with a clear outline of what the onboarding process looks like and make it as streamlined as possible. Third, maintain close communication with candidates from the start, making sure to “read their digital body language” so you can address any potential problems before they escalate.

Besides that, it’s helpful to have at least one backup in place just in case someone drops out unexpectedly.

4. Finding Quality Entry-Level Sales Reps

Finally, there’s the issue of attracting entry-level candidates, with 41% of companies saying these are the hardest positions to fill. Two main reasons why it’s notoriously difficult are because 1) entry-level positions don’t usually pay as much as more experienced positions and 2) candidates often lack the ideal skill set and experience a recruiter is looking for.

So what do you do about it?

When it comes to the pay, I suggest thoroughly analyzing what your competitors are offering for similar positions and either match or exceed it, if possible. You can find more information on current salesperson salaries here.

If that’s just not possible, here are some potential workarounds:

  • Offer plenty of advancement opportunities giving entry-level salespeople the chance to progress
  • Create an amazing culture, and emphasize it in your recruiting
  • Offer flexible work schedules and remote working opportunities as this tends to be effective for recruiting younger reps

As for addressing the issue of limited skill set, it’s all about finding the diamonds in the rough. This, of course, is easier said than done as many candidates will have minimal experience, but there are tools that can help. HireDNA, for instance, can come in handy here because it can be used to objectively screen candidates and predict their likelihood of success. In turn, it’s much easier to identify candidates that will thrive in your specific sales environment.

Overcoming Today’s Unique Sales Recruiting Challenges

To recap, here are the top challenges for sales recruiters in 2022:

  • Candidates lacking soft skills – 89%
  • Hiring candidates who didn’t first appear to fit – 77%
  • Candidates changing their minds – 75%
  • Filling entry-level positions – 41%

While these can be tricky to navigate, each problem has a corresponding solution, and implementing the right one should help your company thrive in today’s recruiting climate. To learn more about how HireDNA can help you select elite talent in your industry, get in touch with us today.