We’re all familiar with the term ‘Search Engine Optimisation’, for most of us this has been an important recruitment marketing focus for many years and a key driver of applications. Optimising your careers website successfully for a search engine has enabled you to be in a position where you rank well amongst your competitors. Having attracted the much desired ‘long-tail’ and highly relevant traffic, a high proportion of website traffic is from organic search.
What is Search Experience Optimisation?
Over the past few years Google and Bing have been working hard to re-focus and upgrade how their algorithms work. In the past website rankings were based purely on a series of technical criteria. More recently algorithms have been developed around what a user experience on a website should be. Criteria now includes elements such as mobile optimisation, site speed, structure, layout and content, usability, social signals and traffic.
The term Search Experience Optimisation (SXO) has been discussed by many SEO experts over the last few years and is a more accurate labelling of the direction in which SEO has been moving.
SXO takes into account whether search engine USERS are getting what they EXPECT from your careers website. SXO is a convergence of two key digital marketing areas – Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO).
What is Conversion Rate Optimisation?
CRO is a method for increasing the percentage of visitors to a careers website that convert into applications. At its most significant CRO means understanding what candidates are looking for when they arrive at your careers website and giving it to them as easily and simply as possible.
Based on the KPI you’re trying to improve, CRO can take several different forms, including improving the positioning or wording on your call-to-action or removing or relocating unnecessarily complicated or time-consuming steps from your conversion funnel as these can be a barrier to receiving a completed application from a good candidate.
Why should you care about SXO?
It’s good news. Successful SXO puts your careers website at its heart and is more likely to provide a good online candidate experience. This is paramount for your users and therefore to search engines. Plus, a higher conversion rate of website visitors to relevant applications means better return on your recruitment marketing investment.
Radu Stoian, Enhance Media’s Technical Director added:
“Google has become better at identifying the content most relevant to a candidate’s query as well as the web page offering the best user experience. This means Google has moved away from simply matching keywords to pages and is now looking at keyword topics and synonyms (Hummingbird Update), page quality (Google Panda Update) and user experience. We know that Google is fine tuning its search results based on click-through-rates and we also know that ‘dwell time’ (the time spent by candidates on a website after clicking on a search result) is a ranking factor.”
To read more about SXO, click here