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Top 5 Takeaways from the Appcast 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report

Takeaways from Appcast 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report
Profile photo of Lori Sylvia
Written by Lori Sylvia

Appcast has released its 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report and it’s filled with data and insights about how market and candidate behavior is changing. Read our 5 key takeaways and tips for how you can optimize your budget and strategy to recruit talent.

Top 5 Takeaways from the Appcast 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report
5 (100%) 6 votes

In an uncertain labor market, it’s crucial to understand your recruitment advertising performance so that you can optimize your budget, improve return on investment (ROI) and attract qualified talent. That’s why we dug into Appcast‘s 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report to learn how both the market and candidate behavior are changing, to help you build the best talent acquisition and Recruitment Marketing strategies to compete this year.

To help you make the most of these insights, we’ve gone through the report and identified 5 key takeaways. We’ve also paired these alongside actionable tips that you can put into practice. We hope this information is helpful as you continue to optimize your talent acquisition and Recruitment Marketing strategies in 2021 and beyond.

Rally note: if you’re interested in learning more data and insights you can download Appcast’s 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report here.

2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report Takeaways

Takeaway #1: Optimize your job application process to decrease your cost per click (CPC)

The findings:

In 2020, Appcast found that the overall CPC rate increased by 11.3% in comparison to 2019, and by 12.9% in comparison to 2018. Traditionally, when the unemployment rate is high, the apply rate is high, because there are more candidates. However, in 2020, despite high unemployment, the apply rate stayed low and steady.

That’s because the pandemic caused people to become more selective about which jobs to apply for due to safety concerns or because they required jobs with certain flexibility such as work from home. Government financial assistance, school closings and restricted access to child care also had an impact on people’s job search and application rates.

What this means for your Recruitment Marketing strategy:

Even though the unemployment rate remains relatively high, you might continue to experience lower apply rates. That means you may need a higher number of clicks to get your desired number of applicants — which can mean a higher CPC. To mitigate risk here, test out multiple sources of candidates upfront to see which ones perform best so that you can invest your efforts more efficiently later on.

And look for ways to improve your job application process to help increase your apply rates, like reducing the friction in your mobile applications, optimizing your job titles and changing the days of the week you post jobs. We’ll talk more about these tips later on, but in general, optimizing your job application process can help improve your apply rates — which means a decrease to your CPC!

Takeaway #2: Mobile apply is here to stay

The findings:

This past year, Appcast reports there was a 6.7% decrease in desktop in comparison to 2019. By contrast, the mobile apply rate was up 21.2% in comparison to 2019.

What this means for your Recruitment Marketing strategy:

Often the issue with many mobile job application forms is that they haven’t been condensed enough for mobile devices. Mobile job applications should be designed to be much easier and quicker to fill out, not only designed for the small screen.

However, don’t completely ignore desktop! While some industries, such as gig and transportation, saw the majority of their applications come through mobile, other industries such as tech and administration continued to see higher desktop application rates. The discrepancy here is likely because of the nature of the jobs in each industry. For example, many gig workers get work through mobile apps and spend their days on the go, while most knowledge workers typically spend their days sitting at a desk.

Overall, it’s important you continue to look carefully at how you might improve the apply process on mobile and desktop, and where you experience candidate drop offs. Regularly audit your process by applying for your own jobs on desktop and mobile devices.

And don’t forget your emails! One of my biggest pet peeves is emails that are not mobile optimized. Take a look now at the system-generated emails coming from your ATS, or the templates for your talent newsletter, and triple check that they’re mobile friendly.

Looking for more ideas on how to upgrade your apply experience? Check out our blog post with BayShore HealthCare’s Rose DeLuca, 3 Concrete Ways Recruitment Marketers Can Improve the Job Application Process.

Takeaway #3: Shorter job titles perform best

The findings:

In 2020, job ads with titles between 1-3 words had the highest average volume of clicks (2.68) and highest apply rate at 6.22%, according to Appcast. In fact, there was a decrease in both metrics for longer job titles.

2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report: Apply Rate by Job Title Length

Apply Rate by Job Title Length

What this means for your Recruitment Marketing strategy:

If you’re looking to make the most out of your job ads, the shorter the job title the better. Make sure to optimize your titles to match what candidates are more likely to search for by using keywords that are more industry specific rather than company specific.

For example, if your organization calls Marketing Managers, “Marketing Leads,” then you may want to switch this up for your external job posting to attract more candidates. You can even A/B test two different job titles by posting two versions of a job ad to find out which one performs better.

Takeaway #4: Tuesday is the most popular day to apply for jobs

The findings:

On average, Appcast found that people tend to search and apply for jobs between Monday and Thursday, regardless of whether they are employed, with Tuesday seeing the highest amount of action — a whopping 17.57% of candidates apply then!

What this means for your Recruitment Marketing strategy:

Post and advertise your jobs early in the week to get the most out of your efforts. And if you’re using a programmatic job advertising partner, set your bids lower on days of the week that see less action (Friday to Sunday) to help ensure you don’t waste valuable recruitment budget dollars.

Takeaway #5: Optimize your job advertising budget

The findings:

In 2020, the pace of recruitment advertising activity declined steadily as the month progressed, while candidate activity remained relatively consistent throughout the month, Appcast reports.

What this means for your Recruitment Marketing strategy:

Recruitment advertising budgets are usually allocated on a monthly basis, that’s why you’ll typically see higher spend at the beginning of the month and employers running out of funds toward the end of the month.

However, candidates are applying for jobs throughout the month. So, consider spending your recruitment advertising budget more evenly throughout the month — that way, you’ll have less competition for candidates later in the month!

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We hope our breakdown of Appcast’s 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report — plus our actionable tips — provide you with new insight to enhance your Recruitment Marketing strategy. If you’d like to find out more and see the data for yourself, you can download the full 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report here.

Top 5 Takeaways from the Appcast 2021 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report
5 (100%) 6 votes

About the Author

Profile photo of Lori Sylvia

Lori Sylvia

Recruitment Marketing evangelist and community builder. Founder of Rally.

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