Is your website COSTING you money?

  By Anonymous  |    Thursday April 5, 2013

Category: Expert Advice, Technology


No, I don’t mean “how much did you spend on your site,” I mean are you losing clients and candidates because of your website?

At Haley Marketing, we design websites for recruiting and staffing firms. Lots of websites (more than 800 at last count). And we regularly track Google analytics on more than 250 sites. As a result, we know the features that are most demanded by employers and job seekers. And we know where people are most likely to abandon your site.

One of the biggest lessons we’ve learned is that recruiting firms really under value, and under leverage, the traffic coming to their websites. While traffic varies greatly from one firm to the next, every single site we see gets hundreds (and often even thousands) more visitors each month than the company’s physical locations do.

So what causes staffing websites to lose money?

Unprofessional design. You don’t need the fanciest website in the world, but you do need a site that looks good. Your website is effectively your “Director of First Impressions.” Its appearance conveys a strong message to employers and job seekers, and you absolutely must have a site that conveys the right message about your firm.

No ability to search jobs. It’s the number one feature job seekers want. Ideally you not only have a searchable job board on your site, but you also feature Hot Jobs right on your home page. In fact, searchable job boards account for, on average, 40-60% of all page visits—if you don’t have a job board, you’re missing a huge recruiting opportunity.

“Me too” copy. Yes, your service is great. And yes, you have loads of experience in your market. And you can provide great people. But guess what? Your competitors websites are saying these things already. If you want your website to make a lasting impression, you need a message that is clear, concise and different from everyone else.

Confusing navigation.  Ideally, the most important features of your website should be accessible with one click from the home page. They may be incorporated into the site navigation or maybe you’ll have a quick links area to access these features. When designing your site, graphic links can make key features easier to find.

 No call to action. You want job orders? Let employers place an order. You want candidates? Make it easy for people to apply or send in their resume. Every page on your website should have a specific purpose and call to action. Make the calls to action easy to find and easy to use.

Long application forms. Please, forget the super long application forms! Nothing chases candidates away faster than having to enter 500 skill codes. While you need to collect the data, consider a two step process. In step one, just get their name and resume. Better yet, allow them to apply with LinkedIn with just one click. Once you have the basic data, you can then ask them to complete the long form prior to an interview.

Lack of fresh content.  Is your website just an online brochure with a few pages, or is it a true resource offering valuable information? If your website just talks about your services and your company, there is no reason to come back. Furthermore, search engines won’t find your site relevant. In tracking more than 75 sites that add content to a blog once per week, we found an average increase in search traffic of 253% within one year. On the other hand, websites without regular updates saw flat search engine traffic and in some cases a decrease.

Impossible to find.  You can have the best site in the world—but it’s useless unless people can find it! When someone types in “Recruiting firms in {your city}” and your competitors dominate the results—you’re losing business. Your static pages should be search engine optimized and you should have a plan in place to continually add fresh and relevant content to your site.

Ignoring analytics. Do you know how much time people spend on your website? Do you know which pages have the highest drop off rate? Do you know what sources drive the most traffic to your site? If you don’t have access to this data or you ignore it, you’re doing yourself a big disservice. This information will tell you exactly how your site is performing and allow to address areas of concern. At Haley Marketing, we track these stats for our clients and leverage data on over 250 staffing websites to help design sites that attract and convert potential clients and candidates.

The ROI on your website is measured in thousands of percent!

A great website is an investment in your firm’s future. It will last you for at least three years and more likely from five to seven. If you amortize the investment over this period, and consider the job orders you’ll get and candidates you’ll attract, your website will produce tens of thousands in revenue for a comparatively small investment.

And that’s way more than you’ll get from the furniture in the lobby!

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