Utilizing SEO and Keywords in your Job Postings

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Using SEO (Search Engine Optimization) in your job postings is a great way to reach more candidates and recruiters. Standing out amongst the competition isn’t just important to candidates; it’s essential for employers who want to attract the best candidates possible.

Choose SEO Keywords for a Job Posting:

Using clear and relevant keywords in your job posting is important. Search engines employ certain algorithms that incorporate keywords to rank webpages in their results and job boards work in the same manner, using them to link job seekers with job posters.

Keywords should be clear and descriptive. Terms that are too general or too complicated will both have a negative impact on your search engine success and on the number of applications you receive.

The most basic keyword for your job posting is the job title itself. It may contain a title or acronym that is widely understood in your company, but is foreign to others. “Outbound Manager” is clear to you, but people who are looking for positions as a warehouse supervisor might not know that that is exactly what an Outbound Manager is. Include the more generic description in your posting, which also get you more views for your ads as well.

Slang terms also create a problem when trying connect candidates with job postings. For example, the desire to spruce up job titles with terms like “Coding Ninja” prevents people using the more traditional title in their search from finding your positing.

Monster.com’s SEO Manager recommends including location directly in the post title. Most job boards have a special field so you don’t need to worry about this, but if you are advertising elsewhere or hoping for search engine hits, it may make a big difference. As an expert in SEO for job listings, he also recommends including the job title and location in both the title and the body – but not too often.

More generic skills can also serve as keywords, but this only benefits you if used in combination with more specific needs. Your perfect customer service employee may not realize that you consider a sales job great training for the position. In this example, you might want to include “sales” in your description to attract more applicants.

Be aware that some keywords may attract both qualified candidates and bad matches. A good example is a phrase like “flexible schedule.” Qualified people who prefer a varied schedule may apply, but people who don’t actually have a flexible schedule might too – when they use this phrase, they mean that they need an employer whowill be flexible about when they can work.

In summary, here are some of the most important phrases to emphasize and include as keywords in your description:

–        The job title as well as a short alternative title or phrase to describe it (e.g., “Loss Prevention Manager – Merchandise and Asset Protection”)

–        Non-negotiable knowledge for the position (“MS SQL, JavaScript”, “Fluent in Japanese”)

–        Important work environment details (“flexible schedule”, “outdoors”, “travel required”)

–        Benefits and attractions that will make your company stand out (“advancement opportunities”, “environmentally conscious”, “paid training”)


Don’t clutter job postings with unnecessary detail, but make sure that you offer a good description of the job, list deal-breaker requirements, and choose brief phrases that emphasize important aspects of the position or more commonly known titles.

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