In today’s job market, a strong online presence is essential for attracting top talent. Your careers website is the virtual shop window to your organisation, making it crucial for attracting and engaging candidates. However, not all career websites perform at their best, so it’s essential to recognise the signs of underperformance as soon as possible.
In this blog, we highlight ten red flags that indicate your careers website may not be living up to its true potential. We include insights from two of Careersix’s founders, Clair Bush and AJ Mussell, who are leading experts in the fields of recruitment marketing and search engine optimisation (SEO) respectively. Keep reading for our fresh take on how to optimise your careers website for optimal performance and user experience.
1. Low Visitor Traffic
If your career website isn’t attracting enough traffic, chances are it’s either not optimised for search engines or it’s not targeting the right audience. Low visitor traffic could be a sign that you need to review and implement new SEO strategies, such as keyword research, and that your content speaks to the right people and is tailored accordingly.
AJ: “There’s always a logical reason for a career website’s lack of visitors. Nine times out of ten it boils down to ineffective or insufficient SEO, poorly written or misguided content, a bad user experience (UX), or a combination of all these things. If you can address these issues, you’ll go a long way towards gaining some valuable traction.”
2. Poor Quality Job Listings
Job listings should be well-written, informative and relevant to the role being advertised. Poorly written job postings can create confusion among potential candidates and could potentially lead them away from your site. Descriptions should also be optimised for search engines to improve their rankings and attract more applicants.
Clair: “Rather than spamming the internet with job listings, it’s about quality. If you’ve got a lull in vacancies, profiling your employer brand content could be a nice way of filling that gap. Why not create a purpose-built recruitment marketing funnel for people to really understand your workplace and aspire to be a part of it?”
3. Google For Jobs
Did you know that Google collates and aggregates job postings from across the web. Regardless of whether they’re on websites run by small businesses or on dedicated job sites with thousands of listings, Google for Jobs makes them more visible and accessible to a wide audience. So ensure your job listings are optimised for Google today.
AJ: “If you post jobs on your company’s own website, then by simply adding some structured data Google will index your posts and display them for you. With a bit of technical input, time and effort, you can use Google’s algorithms to your advantage in this respect. This is a relatively simple hack that delivers really effective results.
4. Slow Page Load Times
Page load speed is an important factor in the overall usability of a career website because it affects how quickly content can be accessed, and subsequently the overall user experience. Slow page load times could mean that potential candidates become frustrated with your website and leave without engaging with it properly.
AJ: “If you’re running paid media campaigns (PPC) site speed also impacts the performance scores of these campaigns. So, broadly speaking, you’ll be able to explore opportunities to reduce your overall media spend with a faster site whilst still maintaining the same level of quality candidates coming through.”
5. Lack Of Employer Branding
Employer branding enables you to showcase your brand’s unique identity and values, build trust with potential candidates, and set your business apart from competitors. Without employer branding, your career website simply won’t be able to effectively communicate why a candidate should choose your company over another.
Clair: “When you’re looking at job specs or adverts, you don’t see the real nuance of a business and what it’s really like to work there. So I think that’s where we really need that employer brand essence upfront and in the face of the job seeker. Otherwise bottom line revenue can quickly drop off because of the experience you’ve not provided.”
6. Outdated Content
Outdated content on a career website gives an impression that the business is either too busy or uninterested in keeping their audience updated. So your careers website should be regularly updated with fresh and relevant content to ensure your organisation remains current, engages potential candidates, and gives off the right signals.
AJ: “Google is the one safe space for most people. It’s where most will head to first if they’re searching for a new role. The blog section of any site acts as the ideal top of the funnel tactic and is by far the most underutilised tool in talent acquisition. So be sure to put some care and attention into your blogs to boost your employer branding.”
7. Lack Of Mobile-friendliness
Mobile devices are an essential tool for job hunters and recruiters alike. Candidates expect to be able to access career sites at any time on their device of choice. So it’s vitally important that your website is mobile-friendly. If your career website is not optimised for mobile viewing, you could be missing out on a huge talent pool.
AJ: “We live in a mobile-first society. If you need to buy something or check a fact, where do you go? Your first instinct is to pick up your phone and search for whatever you need. So careers websites need to be optimised for the mobile-friendly experience that all candidates now expect, (this includes through to your ATS).”
8. Insufficient Candidate Experience
The overall candidate experience is essential to the success of any careers website. A great user journey means that candidates can easily find what they’re looking for and are encouraged to apply for available roles – without any frustration or confusion. A poor candidate experience can lead to lost talent and potential reputational damage.
Clair: “Testing candidate journeys periodically is really important. It’s imperative that organisations constantly stop and check that their candidate experience is hitting all the right notes. That’s the only way you get great candidate NPS scores, positive first impressions, a reduction in dropouts, and an alignment with your employer brand.”
9. Confusing Navigation
Navigation is key when it comes to a successful career website. Poor navigation can cause confusion and hinder potential candidates from finding the information they need. Intuitive navigation should be designed with ease of use in mind, ensuring that all pages are easy to find and that users can quickly access the content they need.
AJ: “Ensuring your careers website instils logical and user-friendly navigation is such a basic premise that it amazes me that so many brands still get it so badly wrong. Make sure your navigation and URL structure allows your candidates to find what they need. I could go into much more detail but that’s it in a nutshell – do the basics well!”
10. Ineffective Call-to-Action (CTA)
It’s essential that your career website has clear calls to action (CTAs) across all pages that are designed to drive conversions. These should be eye-catching and stand out from the rest of the content on the page. If they’re weak or non-existent, this could lead to a lack of conversions and consequently an inadequate number of applicants.
Clair: “Calls to action need to be straightforward. I don’t want to walk on glass or step through fire just to apply for a job! Simplify the process and be really specific. There are some perfectly brilliant analytics tools that show you what works and what doesn’t work. So experiment and find the thing that works best for your organisation.”
If you want to build a careers website that your candidates will love, one that you know for certain has been built with solid recruitment marketing and SEO fundamentals from the get-go, contact us today. Careersix takes pride in developing the best career websites money can buy, blending creativity, tech and experience in one place.