It’s incredible to look back over the past year and see how many digital publishers are launching job boards for the very first time.
There was a time, not long ago, when display advertising was the primary revenue stream for publishers, but that is no longer true. Today’s forward-thinking publishers are launching optimized job boards and business directories, publishing ebooks, and even hosting live events in an effort to satisfy reader demands and generate new streams of revenue.
Today, it’s almost a given that city and regional magazines will have job boards. But creativity among niche publishers is paving the way for a new type of job board that’s often driven not by location, but by interest or occupation.
Regardless of the job board’s area of focus, there remain some challenges that publishers of all types are trying to find answers to. One of the most common questions that we hear at Web Publisher PRO is how job boards should be optimized, not just to rank highly in the search results on Google and Bing, but also for consumer use.
When publishers launch their own job boards, it’s important to have a consistent and well-optimized structure. If job seekers are interested in using your website to search for new opportunities, they will go into research mode looking for every bit of information. Is your job board optimized to give those job seekers the information they are looking for?
Employers play a role here, as well. After all, it’s employers and recruiters who pay to publish listings on most online job boards. If employers don’t feel like their listings are being optimized and published in a way that makes them easy to find and understand, they aren’t going to pay to promote those listings on your website.
Optimized Job Boards
Put yourself in the job seeker’s shoes. What does he or she want out of an online job board? As you build your job listings template, always keep those users in mind. Most people using the search function on optimized job boards will search for specific types of jobs, experience, type of company, or type of industry. Because of this, it’s a good idea to include all of that information in the title tags on your listings.
Job listings should be treated like individual landing pages, giving users enough information to learn about the opportunity and also including relevant keywords.
What Data Should Job Listings Include?
At the very minimum, all listings on optimized job boards should include the following:
- Name of the business or organization with the job opening
- Title of the job (for example, “insurance agent” or “registered nurse”)
- Basic job description, including responsibilities, qualifications, education, and experience needed
- Posting date for the job
- Location information, including the full address of the company
- Expiration date for the job listing
We’re seeing more and more optimized job boards include maps to go along with individual listings, as well. While this is certainly not a requirement, it improves the likelihood of a high Google ranking and, on a basic level, it makes the listing more functional for job seekers who might be interested only in opportunities located in specific areas. It may make sense to lead category pages with location, even for city and regional magazine publishers.
Job Board Best Practices
Optimized job boards are designed in a way that allow people to navigate naturally from listing to listing.
When a job board has an organized category structure, people can more easily browse through listings that meet their requirements. (For example, location or department.)
In addition to having an organized category structure, we also recommend that job roles be broken down by department structure and then grouped together. This allows someone searching for opportunities in Human Resources, for example, to skim through openings in that department.
Can Google Find Your Listings?
Search engine optimization plays an important role in how well-optimized job boards are structured. If Google’s web crawler can’t access the listings because your host load settings don’t allow for frequent crawls, then you’re dead in the water.
To ensure that doesn’t happen, make your job listings indexable and follow basic SEO best practices. Collect the right pieces of data—your webmaster can handle this, but you may also need to be involved—and place your content as structured data in your job description pages.
Google has posted its own job posting structured data guidelines. It’s worth taking a look at these guidelines and making sure that your optimized job boards are keeping up with the standards. Following Google’s structured data guidelines is the most reliable way to make sure people will be able to find your job board online.