Surviving Indeedmageddon




These are just of the few of the ways staffing professionals have described Indeed’s decision to stop providing free candidate traffic to staffing firms.

It hurts. I know. But before you join in the foot-stomping, keep these two points in mind:

1: We really owe Indeed a “thank you.” I mean that sincerely.

For nearly 15 years, Indeed has been a great source of traffic for staffing and recruiting firms’ jobs. And for most of this time, Indeed has provided no-cost, organic listing of your job posts on their website. They’ve never had any obligation to provide free candidate traffic to staffing agencies, but they have done that for us for more than a decade.

For that, we should be thankful.

2: All the foot-stomping in the world won’t change the facts. Indeed may be taking away your free candidate traffic – but getting mad about it won’t change your predicament. What will? Evolving your recruiting strategies. When the environment changes, the fittest survive. But before you can determine how you need to adapt, you must figure out how big a recruiting hit you’ll be taking on Jan. 7, 2019, when Indeed’s new policies go into effect.

To assess your impact, consider:

  • How much traffic are you currently getting from Indeed?
  • What percentage of your job applications are coming from Indeed?
  • How much are you spending now to sponsor jobs?
  • What is your cost per click? Cost per applicant?
  • What percentage of your Indeed applicants do you place?

Armed with this information, you’ll have the data you need to evolve your strategies. What are your options?

Here are 10 ideas for surviving “Indeedmageddon”:

  1. Pay to play. If Indeed delivers great results for you, consider sponsoring your most important jobs. Before locking yourself into a long-term commitment, however, benchmark your results. Systematically test the results of paid postings, and then reallocate funds to improve your ROI.
  2. Expand or vary job advertising. It’s an ideal time to test other job sites, many of which still take your jobs for free. Consider big boards, social networks, wholesale job aggregators, smaller aggregators, local job boards, niche boards for specific skill disciplines, and talent community websites.
  3. Try programmatic advertising. If you invest in job boards, get smarter about how you manage that spend. Programmatic uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to determine the best places to post your jobs, and then reallocates funds to ensure you receive enough applications without overspending.
  4. Plug the leaks in your recruiting funnel. Make sure more visitors to your career site and job board convert to applicants:
    • Streamline your application.
    • Build a responsive website and mobile application.
    • Write more compelling job postings and test job title variations.
    • Add a chat feature to engage job seekers and answer questions.
  5. Mine your ATS. Instead of automatically posting a job, leverage the talent you’ve already worked so hard to recruit. Require recruiters to search your ATS before allowing job advertising spend. Send targeted job alerts to candidates. Conduct re-engagement campaigns. And proactively skill-market your most talented people to keep them working for you.
  6. Design an inbound recruiting strategy. Create and share content to attract job seekers to your website – and your jobs:
    • Create a content plan. Communicate job opportunities to active job seekers; engage passive candidates with content that answers questions about their career and personal interests.
    • Share that content in the places your target audience lives online. Use SEO, social media, email and PPC to ensure your content reaches job seekers.
  7. Go social. LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram offer a wealth of options for attracting, engaging and recruiting qualified talent. Determine which sites your best prospects use, and use these platforms to increase awareness, post jobs, create talent networks, build your employment brand and more.
  8. Leverage SEO. Make sure your jobs and website come up when job seekers search on Google and other search engines:
    • Ensure your jobs portal and all your jobs are on your domain or a jobs subdomain.
    • Optimize individual job pages based on the job title and location in the URL, page title and page content.
    • Optimize each job for Google for Jobs and incorporate the Google Cloud Job Discovery API – so Google knows every time you post a new job.
  9. Build your employment brand. Build your reputation as a best place to work in your local market or industry:
    • Win awards like Inavero’s Best of Staffing Talent.
    • Publicize your participation in local community events.
    • Explore new ways to advertise your brand to job seekers.
    • Proactively build positive reviews online.
  10. Enhance your candidate experience. Examine every touch point, looking for opportunities to make working with you easier by improving communication, speeding candidate intake and helping job seekers find their ideal opportunity.

PREMIUM CONTENT: Online Job advertising Landscape report

This is by no means an exhaustive list of recruiting ideas.

But it’s a start! Yes, Indeed is taking away your freebies, and no, you’re not doomed. You have myriad options for recruiting great talent in our current economy. To thrive the recruiting apocalypse, take these next steps:

  1. Define your goals: What will you need to replace once Indeed’s free traffic goes away?
  2. Define your budget: How much will you spend to test ideas?
  3. Test: Benchmark results from your current paid advertising. Set up new tests and measure results again.
  4. Determine resource needs: What can you execute on your own – and where will you need help?
  5. Go: Get the support you need. Refine your tests and scale your successful results.

Want more recruiting ideas?

Download these two freebies:

David Searns

David Searns
David Searns is president and CEO of Haley Marketing, a company focused on marketing for staffing and recruiting firms. He can be reached at dsearns (at) haleymarketing (dot) com.

David Searns

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