How to write an internet job advert

ipad with 'send cv' button


You might think that advertising a job on an internet site is just a question of cutting and pasting the job spec onto a web page, but you would be wrong. A large part of the skill of getting good applicants for your jobs lies in correctly targeting your audience, making them aware of the jobs on offer and getting them to apply.

Getting seen

The most important place to start is planning how to get your advert seen by the people you want to see it. Many companies spend a lot of time on the job specification rather than on marketing the job to the correct target audience. The first thing you need to do is consider three things:

– who your target jobseeker is
– how they are likely to search for jobs
– how you can get them to see your jobs

Defining your target audience depends on the kinds of skills you need for the job, which industry sectors this covers and which companies might be relevant.


Most potential candidates will search on something generic to a job, for instance, working mothers who are looking for flexible work will search on terms like flexibility, work life balance, etc. Their main concerns will be where the job is, what the job involves and career progression, whether it can be done flexibly and pay. Only after this will they be interested in who the employer is and which industry sector it covers.

To ensure your target audience finds your advert you need to ensure they can find it easily on a keyword search. Think about what kind of words your target jobseeker might type into a search engine – such as ‘flexible working’, or ‘family friendly policies’, and if your business is able to offer those things, make sure you include those words in the body of your job advert.

For job titles, make them interesting to stand out from all the similar jobs which may appear in search results but proceed with caution. Too creative and you run the risk of your target applicants not understanding the role and therefore not applying, or your job being excluded from job search results.

Selling the job

Once you have your information and search terms clear, it is important to sell the job to potential employees. Make sure to include the benefits you can offer. Recent research shows that flexible working is becoming a major benefit for all workers – not just parents – so if you can offer this be sure to include details about how this can work. When it comes to the job description, use phrases that are inviting and positive rather than a bland statement of the facts.

Top 20 keywords that working mums search on:

Part time job
Part time work
Women back into the workplace
Women back to work
Mothers back to work
Mums returning to work
Working parents
Working mums and dads
Working mothers and fathers
Flexible role
Work from home
Work at home
Mums working
Term time
Flexible jobs for mums
Working from home
Home-based jobs
Working from home
Home-based jobs

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