Tips, tricks, and best practices for optimizing your bid strategy, relevance score, and overall ROI on Google Ads.
Product Marketing Manager
Now that we’ve covered the two different types of Google Ads advertisements, it’s time to give a quick rundown of some of the strategies and best practices that you might employ in order to maximize the exposure and impact of your employer brand across the web.
Some of these will be more relevant to one form of advertisement than the other, but all should help guide you as you get deeper into the weeds with this unique platform. As you go through, you might find that we’re really just expanding on ideas that have already appeared throughout this guide, but in each case we think the specifics bear a little extra elaboration.
Optimize Your Cost per Click
Google Ads sometimes gets a bad rap because it’s perceived as being too expensive, but if you’re cautious about managing your cost per click that doesn’t have to be the case. Now, because Google Ads is already used by a number of large companies (who are able to leverage large recruitment advertising budgets), some of the more popular keywords can cost several dollars per click, which many smaller businesses may not be able to afford.
One way to circumvent this issue is to choose less competitive keywords, but sometimes there’s only so much wiggle room for your search terms.
To determine how much you can really afford to spend per click, you’ll need to consider the expected ROI of each visitor to your landing page. Again, this is a little more complex in recruitment than it would be in traditional sales, but if you have a sense of how much each hire is worth to you, compared with how many applicants per hire you usually get and how many applications you get per click, then you can determine the maximum price you can pay per click before your expected ROI turns negative.
Once you’ve got this number in mind, it’s time to start taking additional steps to keep your cost per click down while still reaching an impactful number of users. What steps, exactly? Taking extreme care with how you’re defining your search terms and targeting your audience; and making sure your content is as relevant to the search terms (and the needs of the searchers) as possible. Speaking of which:
Don’t Neglect Your Landing Pages
Getting a handle on your optimum cost per click is a good way to make sure that your budget and your recruitment goals are appropriately aligned. But, again, the amount that you bid on each search or display ad is not the only determining factor in who sees your ads.
Google is also interested in showing people content that they’re likely to find helpful. How do they do that? By checking the relevance not just of the contents of your ad, but of the landing page that the ad redirects to.
This means that even if your bid for a particular search term is relatively high, Google can still penalize you for linking to a landing page that’s not relevant to the search term. How do you avoid this fate?
First of all, you should make sure that the text of the landing page includes the appropriate keywords, and that, in general, it speaks to the search term. This means that if you’re targeting active job seekers (with, say, “developer jobs Python” as your search term), your landing page should include the words “developer,” “job,” and “Python,” in addition to being fairly explicit about the fact that you are, in fact, offering a job for developers working in Python.
Not only will this help Google to show your ads to more people, it will help prospective recruits to orient themselves after they’ve been redirected, so that they don’t get confused about what steps to take next and drop out of the application process.
For passive job seekers, who might, for instance, be trying to find information to solve a coding problem, make sure that your landing page contains the information that they need—plus a way to enter your recruitment funnel!
Utilize Remarketing Campaigns
In addition to offering you fairly granular options about where your content is being displayed, Google also offers a robust set of targeting options for delineating the audience to which your content will be shown.
One of the most powerful tools that Google Ads offers for targeting is remarketing, in which your ads are only shown users who have already visited your website or interacted with your brand in some way.
Because these people have already displayed the first signs of interest in your brand, they’re much more likely to be receptive to your messaging in the future. Again, if you adopt this strategy you can tailor your content accordingly: if you’re a tech startup, for instance, your second touch recruitment campaign might assume some familiarity with your employer brand and leverage that familiarity into something bold, like a link to a coding challenge or an invitation to contribute to a piece of open source software.