- Expect the ‘Google for Jobs’ rollout to reduce your AdWords traffic by half (or double the cost of delivering the same traffic).
- Expect traffic from aggregators to become more expensive over time
- Obtaining exclusive, unique job postings, and curating a database of engaged users will be crucial to maintaining your organic search traffic
- If you use mailing lists/email databases, independent banner ads, social media, make use of branding initiatives to increase direct traffic, or invest heavily in informational/useful content – all of this is going to be more important as a source of traffic moving forwards.
Working out changes to organic search traffic
In short: there’s no definite way to make a projection, but there is a way to identify the at-risk segments of your traffic and give yourself an idea of the likely impact.
Firstly, you’ll need to work out how much of your traffic comes from search queries that contain the word ‘job’ as a percentage of your total organic traffic. Next, you want to work out how much of your traffic comes from generic long tail searches. Then we can look at the likely impact on those segments.
Step by step guide:
- Log into your Google Search Console account
- From the dashboard, click ‘search traffic’ and then click ‘search analytics’.
You’ll want to get a decent bucket of data to work with, so:
- For ‘dates’ pick 90 days as the period.
- Take a note of the number of clicks.
The next thing you need to do is figure out the split between generic/brand and job search terms.
- Click on ‘no filter’ underneath ‘queries’. You’ll be presented with some options.
- Where it says, ‘queries containing’, select ‘queries not containing’ instead.
- In the box where it says ‘keyword’, enter the words ‘job’, ‘career’, ‘role’ etc. and click ‘filter’. Now, take a note of this number of clicks.
This represents your ‘job keyword’ search traffic (you might spot a few other job queries, in which case expand your filtering) So what’s going to happen to this segment?
Job search keywords
The first thing to understand is that when a job is found in more than one location, Google will give searchers the option of choosing which results they’d rather see in the future.
A) Do not have a very well-developed database of registered candidates, and
- B) Have little in the way of exclusive advertisers – with jobs found on other job boards...
… then it’s likely you’re going to be filtered out as candidates select the job boards they are used to or already registered with over you. In this case, you can expect the majority of this ‘jobs keywords’ segment to drop off after the platform gets rolled out in the UK.
A) Have an up to date, extensive database of candidates with populated accounts, with CV’s etc.
- B) Have a large number of exclusive job postings, not found elsewhere
…then you are more likely to retain the slice of the traffic pie – or potentially increase it.
Now let’s look at generic, informational queries – questions about job roles, salaries, advice for getting into certain industries, etc.
This is an important chunk of traffic for many boards. Some job boards who invest heavily in their content have as much as 80% of their organic traffic coming through this segment via articles.
To figure this out, repeat the steps above, but filter out ‘job’ and also filter out your brand name.
At this point, there are two likely outcomes.
- You’re looking at a huge proportion of your organic traffic
- You barely have any clicks for this segment
This represents the ‘safest’ chunk of traffic you have, and if you have a lot of traffic here, this is likely to stay as it is. However, if you have barely any traffic within this segment, you should consider investing in your content as this traffic is likely to stand the test of time – and your traffic from job keywords might change dramatically for the worse.
In conclusion – organic traffic:
Job boards with well-developed content, traffic for generic queries, unique job postings, and a maintained and up to date userbase will potentially increase their traffic.
Job boards with a large proportion of job keyword traffic, little in the way of content, little exclusive job postings, and little in the way of email databases and registered users are likely to see their traffic sharply decline.
With AdWords, this is even simpler. From the experience of our USA partners, we have seen that the effect of the rollout has caused the cost of buying advertising on Google Search to double – or the amount of traffic to half, depending on which way you look at it. So for the same budget, you can expect half the applications.
There’s no hard and fast rule to follow here; however, as many aggregators get a lot of traffic from paid and organic search a combination of paid and organic search, we anticipate costs rising for them as well. This is a cost that’s likely to make its way to you, so it’s likely that this traffic will increase in cost.
In the near-term aggregators will continue to deliver applications, as Google have partnered with the biggest players already – and Google for Jobs results are peppered with aggregator listings. But the long-term goal for Google is likely to become the primary aggregator for recruitment, and as such, it’s likely that Google will monetise the Google for Jobs service – at the expense of the ability for aggregators to make use of it effectively/cheaply. So this is likely to push costs even higher.