Approximately 70% of all job seekers use Google to search for vacancies and potential employers. Almost 90% say a company’s careers page is important for getting relevant information about the job and the company.
If potential candidates don’t find what they are looking for, they leave the site just as quickly as they came. It is not uncommon for job seekers to end up on the websites of market competitors. It is therefore particularly important to avoid “dead ends” on the careers page.
Google has also had a strong impact on user behavior on websites. Website visitors usually go straight to the search bar and expect to find what they are looking for with little effort. If a job search on your career site delivers “no results”, this can damage potential conversions— i.e., applications in the best case. So what can you do? The answer is simple: avoid a “no results” page and always offer a way forward. Here are some tips that go beyond the standard “broaden your search” suggestion to help you get the most out of your search results.
1. Check your results page
This should be quite easy: enter nonsensical words in your keyword search and you will quickly find that no job offer matches your search. How does your website deal with it if no job offers are found? While this first step is quick and easy, it doesn’t tell you which common searches aren’t returning results and are slowing down your conversion rate. Luckily, Google offers a way to find out via Tag Manager. By tracking searches, you can also check if there are any common searches that aren’t on your radar.
2. Build your synonym library
By tracking your searches, you often find search terms that return no results. This not only gives you valuable insight into the search behavior of your potential applicants, but also allows you to identify terms that are similar but not identical to your job title. If your company has a unique way of describing roles or job categories, this can become a problem. If talents are not familiar with your company-specific descriptions and are looking for the job titles that are common on the market, they will not find any suitable results without a synonym library. This is where synonyms come into play. Set up rules in your search that associate similar terms with your usual vocabulary. Remember to check and update this library regularly. Rules-based search, where you are in control, can have a big impact on conversion rates.
3. Offer search auto-complete or search suggestions
As your website users type in their search query, you have the option to match the entered term to available job titles, categories and/or locations with each keystroke. In addition, you can display a list of available categories as soon as users click in the search field—even before they start typing. This proactive approach speeds up searches and ensures searchers land on a valid search results page.
4. Check for typos and misspellings
Nobody is perfect, and spelling can sometimes be harder than you think. Combine that with big fingers and the small keyboards on smartphones, and you have a recipe for disaster. If there’s anything you can count on, it’s human error. You can solve some of these challenges with your synonym library, especially if you recognize patterns and configure a “Did you mean…” function on your website to correct common mistakes.
When potential candidates are looking for a job that falls through the cracks, this dictionary can serve as a safeguard. If the search doesn’t return any results, simply offer alternatives. This way, searchers can quickly identify their typing or spelling mistakes. Go one step further and automatically show search results for the first option in your suggestions.
Another option is the so-called “Inline Validation”. Errors are recorded before search queries are sent and flagged. Most browsers offer a spell check feature in the form of a wavy red line under the misspelled word, but not all. Special tools such as nanospell can also help to detect errors in real time.
5. Lists of options available when no match is found
Even the best site search sometimes returns no results. What matters is what you do in this case. It is important that a solution is offered. Job seekers may not be aware of all the options that are available to them, especially when their first route is to search and hope for the best. So if they get that dreaded “sorry, we didn’t find a match”, you can provide a list of the available categories and/or locations along with the number of options available in each category. This gives job seekers a range of options to continue their search.
6. Offer push notifications
If no matches are found or only a few results appear, give job seekers the option to sign up for your talent pool or enable job alerts that will notify them via email or push notifications when an opportunity is available.
7. Offer a search alternative
Finally, if all of the above options fail, offer an alternative. Your organization may have a direct contact option (e.g., phone number or email address) for job inquiries. Another possibility is a recruiting assistant or a chatbot that can process and filter inquiries in a different way.
In summary, “No Results” pages don’t have to be a dead end. Applying the options listed here will ensure that your search is not the issue when it comes to conversion. Then you can focus on other important factors in your candidate journey.
Our Talent Acquisition Cloud, complemented by rich data and deep industry insights, is revolutionizing the way employers attract and hire the talent they need. Would you like to see what we can achieve together? Contact us today.
 Cvviz.com (2022). Recruitment Statistics 2022: Recruiting Trends and Insights. https:\/\/firstbird.com//cvviz.com/recruitment-statistics