So, Google is going to be making some changes to Google for Jobs. This news comes after a long interval of no news from the big G when it comes to their job search user experience.
When I read the news the first thing I thought of was it sounded like a page torn form the Indeed playbook. They have made similar moves in the past when it comes to eliminating “spammy” content from its listings, including kicking off every job board and staffing agency they could find.
“Searching for a job can be a time-consuming process and the outcome of the application may be life changing. That’s why providing job seekers with authentic, fresh, and trustworthy content when they come to Google Search is our top priority.”
They say they surveyed users to comes up with the new guidelines.
They say you can improve job seeker trust by addressing the following aspects on your site:
- Verify that there are no scammy or spammy job posts on your site.
- Ensure a good user experience. According to our users, sites with poor user experience are those that ask for user information when it is not necessary, have poor quality pages (for example, excessive or obstructive ads), and/or have complex application processes (for example, lead to many redirects). Poor user experience also reduces application completion rate.
- Remove expired job posts. Don’t leave a job post open if it is no longer accepting new applications.
- Make sure that the job’s posting date is genuine. Don’t mask old jobs as new ones and don’t update the
DatePostedproperty if there was no change to the job post.
- Don’t include wrong or misleading information in the job post or the markup. This includes incorrect salary, location, working hours, employment type, or other job specific details.
I’m not sure how they are going to know about that last bullet point. Only the employer would really know.
But the big news from this announcement is the Direct Apply option.
Basically Google wants you to take the user directly to the apply form without having to jump through hoops to apply to the job. This means you will be penalized if you force users to log in to apply to your jobs.
Most job board software allows you to do this already but I asked Rodion from Smart Job Board about the news and if they planned on adjusting their platform;
Our dev team checked this and was able to quickly implement it. So now, DIRECT APPLY will be used for jobs that accept application on the job page directly and will not be used for jobs with redirects. Also, we’ll automatically open the application pop-up when users are arriving from Google to eliminate Apply button click and enhance user experience.Rodion Telpizov, Smart Job Board
ATS vendors should also take note of these changes. Many applicant tracking systems consistently require a login to apply so this will be a strong incentive to change their ways. Their client (employers) are going to get pissed off if they see any kind of traffic loss because their recruiting software still enables a poor apply experience.
The changes Google announced go into effect on October 1st so you have a few months to adjust your sites and let people apply with as few clicks as possible. Otherwise your job traffic from Google will surely drop off or perhaps even disappear.