JobServe Insight : Super-charge your adverts – Written by Rachel Reading

Advert Optimisation

It should go without saying that the fundamental of a good job advertisement is that it is attractive to its desired audience. However, writing a good job advert goes beyond these basics, and should be based upon an understanding of the techniques employed by job seekers in searching for jobs, and by job boards in delivering (what they perceive as being) the most relevant jobs.

Did you know that a well written advert can receive as many as 71% more applications than a less well written equivalent?

For the majority of job boards, the primary search criteria are determined from the job seeker entering one or more keywords or phrases that describe their requirements. JobServe’s sophisticated search engine works on a “best match” basis, therefore the better your jobs match the candidate’s “keyword search”, the higher they will appear in their search results.

To dispel a couple of myths

  • JobServe Best Match does not place adverts in the search results based on the age of the job.
  • JobServe Best Match does not list adverts based on the repetition of key skills in the advert body.

Reaching “Active” Candidates

Fundamentally, job boards can only match based upon the content you provide in your job advert. It is therefore important that your job advert contains all of the necessary constituent parts.

Shown below is the all-important structure for writing an advert, structured to work well with job board technology. Recruiters are advised to follow this format when writing their own job adverts on JobServe.

Job Title
It is perhaps of little surprise that the job title is one of the most important parts of the job advert. The job title is the first thing to catch the job seeker’s eye, and draw them to read your advert further.

The job title should both accurately describe the role using the terminology most likely to be used by job seekers, and also include popular alternate titles for the same role, as well as identifying the key skills.

Job Description
You should start your job description by repeating the job title, trying to avoid prefixing it with superfluous words such as “My client is seeking…”.

Keep your job description concise. Aim for between 200 and 500 words and use short paragraphs and bullet points where you can to make the ad easy to scan.

Give an idea of what the company culture is like at the end of the advert. This is an important selling point and should be included, but not at the expense of the information on the role.

When completing the location information for your job, always try to be as specific as possible. Many job seekers will run proximity searches to refine the results for where they would like to work. Stating which town or city a job is located will mean it will be returned in far more search results, leading to more response.
Stats show :

  • Contract roles with salaries disclosed receive twice as many applications than those without
  • Permanent roles with salaries shown receive 50% more applications than those jobs which do not show the salary

If the job you are advertising has extra benefits, include these with your salary information. Some of the modern “intelligent” job search engines, such as JobServe, will take this into account when providing matches to candidates.

Jobs by Email

Jobs by Email was pioneered by JobServe in 1993 and is the proactive sending of jobs to matching candidates over a certain period of time. JobServe will send your job via email when it matches search criteria set up by our candidates.

By following the above suggestions, you will be increasing your chances of your jobs being included in more relevant Jobs by Email subscriptions each week, therefore widening the audience to your role.

And don’t forget…these may be passive candidates, not necessarily actively searching for jobs on the site. By receiving these emails they will have the opportunity to apply for your job, and they haven’t had to lift a finger!


Brand awareness, and the smart application of it, is a useful way for recruiters to increase the number of applicants to their job.

Where permissible, branding should always be applied to the job advertisement. This helps provide credibility to the advert, and assurance to the job seeker.

As a client of JobServe, you have the ability to fully brand each of your adverts on the site to increase your brand awareness and to help increase applications to each of your requirements.

If this is of interest to you, please contact your JobServe account manager who will be able to assist in getting this set up for you.

You can also view this article on JobServe


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