Jibe, the ATS vendor has a fantastic post on their blog about which online channels convert more applications to their employers jobs. The 2 best sources are organic traffic and social media. Email came in just above 10% so that should also be noted.
Image from Jibe
Keep in mind these are numbers compiled from employer career sites but I think it is safe to assume they would be similar to a traditional job board. What these means for job boards though is that you’d better be doing more with your SEO and social media channels to promote your clients jobs. If those channels convert more applicants you should be spending the bulk of your marketing on SEO, content and social distribution.
Job boards don’t do enough link building. I met the CEO of NeuVoo, the Canadian based aggregator recently and he told me they have teams of people doing nothing but link building. They call up schools and libraries and ask for links. You should be doing that and guest posting as much as possible to build up your search engine rankings.
Sharing your jobs on social media is also important. In my latest ebook I detail a tactic that led to viral traffic hit (30k visits in one day) from Facebook to a job lead on one of my sites. If you aren’t leveraging social media than you aren’t maximizing your traffic potential.
When I was in corporate recruiting our click to apply ratio hovered between 10-15%. Meaning for every click we bought on Indeed that converted, the other 9 were wasted. Job boards should start thinking about abandonment rates and how you can improve them. Of course that’s hard to do when you switch the candidate off to an employer ATS. Those vendors also need to rethink the apply experience. The more clicks the applicant has to do (especially on mobile) the less they will apply.
I also think job board software vendors need to start integrating with more ATS systems in order to hand off the applicant by bringing over some of their data. That will certainly help improve the abandonment rate.