Google Search Engines Show Salary Ranges in Their Search Results

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Recruiters are marketers and in the hiring world, your job posting is the single most important active job seeker recruiting and hiring tool. With the launch of Google Cloud, job posting is appearing higher in indexed search engine results. What does this mean for you? Job posting optimization and SEO is critical in reaching the right talent, plus salary transparency is becoming the norm.

Google announced its Google for Jobs program at the company’s annual I/O developer conference back in May, highlighting plans to scour job listings across the web and collate them directly within Google Search. That plan came to fruition a month later as Google revealed tie-ups with Monster, Facebook, Glassdoor, and others to let job hunters find work and receive email alerts when new opportunities arise.

From Venture Beat:

Since the feature’s launch, Google said that positions from nearly two-thirds of employers in the U.S. have been shown in Google Search. Fast-forward to November, and the company doubled down on its efforts to make Google Search a destination in its own right for those seeking work.

Where Google for Jobs is Now

Google Search will now reveal salary information — not necessarily how much a company is offering for a specific advertised position, but an estimated salary range based on job titles, location, and the employer. This data is garnered from the likes of PayScale, Glassdoor, and LinkedIn.

When an employer does list a specific salary, Google Search will compare the figure to an estimated range, helping job hunters decide whether it’s worth applying for the role. And you don’t have to partner with Google; any company that lists salary information, including specific figures and estimates, can tweak their web pages so that they’re included in job search results.

“Since introducing the [beta] product, one of the most requested data points for job listings is salary,” said Google spokesperson Susan Cadrecha.

However, “by our estimates, this information is missing from over 85 percent of job postings in the U.S. today,” she told the E-Commerce Times.

This information should help users save time during the search process and provide a more holistic view of a potential role, noted Google Product Manager Nick Zakrasek.

Companies can provide JobPosting structured data to have actual salary information displayed in search results, he noted. Alternatively, companies can provide Occupation structured data, which allows the display of estimated salary information from partners offering similar jobs.

Other new features in Google Search include advanced controls over location, with users now able to filter by specifying a distance from a desired location, for example “up to 2 miles” or “up to 30 miles.” It also includes keyword matching, abbreviation recognition, and real-time query broadening. We wouldn’t expect less than robust from a company that was built on internet searches.

Google’s official blog lists the following benefits to employers:

  • A prominent place in search results: your postings are eligible to be displayed in the new job search feature on Google, featuring your logo, reviews, ratings, and job details.
  • More, motivated applicants: job seekers can filter by various criteria like location or job title, meaning you’re more likely to get applicants who are looking exactly for that job.
  • Increased chances of discovery and conversion: job seekers will have a new avenue to interact with your postings and click through to your site.

How to List Job Postings on Google

Developers need to follow two steps to get their listing to rank on the new jobs feature:

  1. Mark up your listings with Job Posting structured data
  2. Submit a sitemap (or RSS or Atom feed) with a <lastmod> date for each listing.

Google has published a guide to the process here, and Google employee Mariya Moeva published the following FAQ to help developers better understand the process.

See the full features and how Google’s Cloud Job Discovery works here.

Transparency in Salaries is a Huge Change for Job Postings

This is definitely a game-changer for recruiters and companies, as news outlets have been predicting for months now. In our current market, with a very low unemployment rate, not having competitive and visible salaries or salary ranges could mean fewer applicants — since a job seeker can just move on to the next comparable job with the higher salary range.

While I’m all for transparency when it comes to salaries, what I’d like to see in Google Search Engine result are Glassdoor results next to be the next search engine integration, as well as a company’s most recent reporting and earnings information (if publicly available) directly in the search profile. Savvy job seekers are already keen on looking up public company data when doing research before applying to see the financial solvency of a company, and they take it into consideration along with salary. Having it publicly available in search results seems like a natural next step.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.


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