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Guest Post: Maximize your hiring success on your green industry website

May 16, 2018 -  By

Using the power of the internet or social media to hire people does not have to be hard, be done by millennials only or be something to fear. Here are four steps to help you maximize your website to its full recruiting potential.

website goals chart

Attract

First you must get people to your website.

Job recruiting boards such as Indeed are almost always on page one of Google searches, which is why every time you post an ad to those sites, you want to include a link back to your website.

You also can rank highly organically by following these search engine optimization techniques to improve your rankings for jobs:

  • Separate your job descriptions out into individual pages with their own hyperlinks;
  • Write brief job ads that include bulleted lists of relevant keywords and phrases along with clear job titles; and
  • Create a visual experience with photos and videos.

Next, once candidates arrive on your site, they need to know where to go. Name your careers page something relevant and place it on your site where it is easy to find, not just in the bottom footer.

In fact, if you’re facing a greater challenge in hiring than you are in sales, then consider swapping out your immediate call to action on the homepage to Apply Now instead of Request a Quote.

Once you’ve made it easy for people to find your careers page, you’ll be their tour guide to realizing their dreams.

Engage

Website visitors spend 80 percent of their time “above the fold,” which is an old newspaper term that refers to the part of the paper you see before you unfold it. For digital marketing, “above the fold” simply means the part we see before scrolling down.

Here are some ideas to help you create an engaging headline unique to your company:

  • Use a play on words with lawn and landscape industry keywords;
  • Identify the main benefit of working for you and use it;
  • Remind applicants about opportunities unique to your company; or
  • Develop a slogan that includes your company name.

Once you’ve hooked them and the potential applicants start scrolling down the page, it’s time to sell them on your career opportunities.

Convince

The lawn and landscape labor pool is extremely competitive. Why should a potential employee choose your company over the local competition?

Consider using a list. People love lists because they are easy to digest. Examples would be “5 Reasons to Join Our Landscaping Team” or “3 Reasons We’re the Best Lawn and Landscape Employer in XYZ City.” To come up with ideas for the list, you can ask your employees what they love about your business or what they liked and disliked about another company.

Next, help candidates understand what your team is like. The simplest way to do this is to include photos of your employees in action with a personalized testimonial from the featured employee. If you really want to stand out, hire a professional videographer and create a 2-3 minute video of an inside look at what it feels like to work for your company.

No matter how you do it, remember to display diversity. Make the careers section feel welcome for men, women, unskilled employees, degreed employees and people of all backgrounds or races. Consider translating specific pages into Spanish.

Convert

In sales, if you forget to ask people to buy, they usually don’t.

Converting visitors online means they take the action you’ve asked them to take. For them to act you have to first ask. Ask them to take the next step by using a big, bold and clear call-to-action button. Here is an example that leaves no doubt in a candidate’s mind about the next step.

CTA example

An easy-to-use tool to create a custom call-to-action button that fits your brand colors is Canva. Use the same button over and over again for consistency. Include this call-to-action button above the fold, at the bottom of your careers page and sprinkled throughout your website—anywhere it’s relevant.

Critical elements for successful conversion include:

  • Great user experience. In the green industry, many applicants are applying from a smartphone, so ensure your form is mobile friendly and buttons are large enough to be clicked with a thumb.
  • Keep it simple. Ask the minimum amount of questions necessary for you to make a preliminary decision to continue the conversation.
  • Receipt confirmation. Once they’ve successfully filled out a form, direct them to a thank-you page and let them know what the next steps are. For example: “Check your email for more information.”
  • Make it go to the right place. If you don’t receive an alert when someone fills out the application, you’re in trouble. Determine who the best person in your office is to receive this notification.

If your website forms are clunky, there are tools you can direct your applicants to such as SurveyMonkey, GoogleForms, or WuFoo. Typically services like this will charge a fee only if you choose to remove their company branding.

When you place recruiting under the marketing umbrella of your business and use the attract, engage, convince and convert method, you will gain a competitive edge and draw more recruits to your company year-round.

Dowell is the owner of Keldo Digital and the creator of “Recruit Like a Pro For the Green Industry Online Course.” She uses technology to develop sales, marketing and recruiting solutions for lawn and landscape business owners and specializes in working with companies who are trying to scale.

Images: Kelly Dowell

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