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Recruitment agency SEO Mindset: How to attract the right people

A user clicks your link in a Google search; instantly, they know the job is not attractive to them; they click the back button and return to Google to resume searching within a second or two.

Google now knows your webpage was irrelevant to this person’s search. Google wants to do its job better every time, or people will stop using it. If you are irrelevant to what people search for, then Google will move you down the ranks and others up. All the super-cool technical SEO tips and tricks won’t save your website from dropping further and further down the rankings.

Today we will focus on the mindset of SEO.

We’ll help you understand whom you’re trying to attract, get inside the head of a client or candidate, understand the motivations of someone looking for a recruitment agency and make sure you deliver what people require.

#1 Create for people and not Google

A lot of SEO advice is technical, which can lead people down a road that focuses solely on their business needs rather than their customer’s needs.

I’m lucky to have attended training with Google Webmasters in Google’s Europe HQ in Dublin. Every single time I’ve visited, the message has been the same. “Build websites and create content for people and not search engines.”

Google and other search engines are continually learning and trying to understand better what people expect to find where they search. So this means that even if you find some sneaky loophole to move up the ranks, the search algorithm will eventually figure it out, and you’ll get punished and moved down the ranks.

Create content, SEO titles, descriptions, images, etc., all for the people you expect to read them, and Google will follow the crowd.

#2 Who is your ideal website visitors?

The goal of a website is to attract the right people, show you can help them and create enough empathy/rapport/enticement that they want to take the next step to work together.

Recruitment agencies have the tricky job of attracting and building relationships with clients and candidates. You need to look at how your agency marketing and sales funnel works and decide if your website is suitable for both clients and candidates or if you should pour more time into focusing on one group so you reap more benefits and are more relevant.

#3 What do clients and candidates need from your agency?

Humans make a lot of decisions based on emotions. Some people need an expert to lead them and tell them what they must do to succeed. Others hate being told what to do and need an agency that sees them as individuals and what to work in partnership with them.

Do the people and processes in your business match the experience your marketing tells people they can expect? You match clients to candidates but ensure you match clients and candidates to your agency style.

#4 Transform people’s search intent into your content

Having 500 people apply for an opportunity with you is useless if all those people are unsuitable for the role. That is merely a waste of staff time. The goal is not to attract every single person on the internet. The goal is to attract the right people who will be suited to this role and will take action.

The intent of a search query

If a person typed ‘accounts payable job public sector in Dublin 2’ into Google, they would show clear intent for what they seek. If this is what you offer as a role, then this person has found what they are looking for — which means they are happy, Google has done its job, and your SEO rank may improve.

Try to include words that show clear intent on the part of whom you are trying to attract. Consider what someone would type into Google and be happy they found your website or job opportunity.

What mindset are people in to need your help?

Candidates change jobs for varying reasons. Some feel they deserve more money for what they do. Some want a place to belong. Others want to be challenged by a project that feels innovative. Ensuring that the content of specific web pages for job roles is tailored to align with a candidate’s particular needs, you will attract a vetted, interested and more suitable candidate for your client.

Clients will have expectations of the type of agency they want to work with to fill positions. If you try to appeal to everyone, you appeal to no one. Who is your ideal client? What type of personality do they have? Do they want to work with the agency that has won the most awards? Or the fastest-to-fill roles? Or the one who has the best connections? The agency that understands their specific sector? Figure out why they choose you and shout about that.

#5 Don’t lose focus on your goal

SEO is necessary but not at the expense of sales or what your brand stands for. People may land on your website from places other than search engines. Your website is not created to please Google; it is a marketing vehicle to help you connect with your ideal clients and candidates. I’ve seen so many people get lost down the rabbit hole of SEO by becoming obsessed about ‘optimising’ their website for SEO but forgetting that they need to ‘optimise’ for the people they want to do business with.

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