Karen Lozada
Google penalties

If you use a website for posting jobs, this information is for you. Due to Google’s recent requirement changes, if you do not remove expired postings in a timely fashion, it could take a manual action penalty against you.

As part of its updated guidelines, the search engine giant warns users who publish job openings specifically using job-posting markup that they need to proactively eliminate any out-of-date postings or information. For sites that post jobs without marked up structured data, this update will probably have no impact.

Avoid a Penalty

If you have an internal team that can handle this, great. Otherwise, you can hire an SEO services company to assist. Using professional search engine optimization services provides two benefits. First, the expert will handle Google’s demands correctly, and second, you can have other things on your site checked or enhanced at the same time.

To avoid penalization, you have four options. Again, if you need assistance with any one of these, a reputable search engine optimization company has the experience and expertise required.

  1. Remove the job posting markup from your web page.
  2. Take down the entire page so that when someone requests it, they receive either a 404 or 410 error message.
  3. Ensure the validThrough property is both populated and dated in the past.
  4. Add a no-index tag.

Some people feel that Google has gone too far in taking manual action against an expired job posting. However, when looking at this situation from a different angle, you realize that it will save people the time and effort that could go into searching and applying for non-existent jobs.

Protecting Job Seekers

While the job market has improved dramatically, there are still plenty of people looking for temporary work and long-term careers. For them, spending valuable time trying to find available jobs only to discover they expired is frustrating and disheartening.

One question that people have is how Google will know whether a job posting expired if there is no deadline linked to it. In that case, it will depend on people conducting searches to file reports. From there, Google’s search quality team will use various methods to confirm that the job listing is in fact no longer available.

There is a positive side to this announcement in that it will help cut down on the number of expired job openings found in Google Search. However, enforcing this guideline could prove challenging. To avoid any adverse effects, you should remove any outdated or unavailable jobs posted on your website. If not, you put yourself at potential risk.

If penalized, Google would prohibit you from showing job opening schema in the future. If your website focuses on nothing but presenting people with open jobs, that would likely wreak havoc on your business, possibly to the point of forcing you to shut it down. Especially after spending a lot of time, money, and effort building a successful online business, you want to do everything possible to protect it and the customers you serve.

Online Job Posting Statistics

In reviewing the current statistics for online job postings, you can see just how monumental this change is, as it will affect so many businesses and individuals searching for work. For example, more than 18.5 million people find jobs every year through online postings, and, on average, there are four million positions online in any given month.

Statistics also show that for every one job posting online, approximately 245 people apply. When you consider the four million job postings times 245 people, that means roughly 980 million depend on accuracy when trying to find employment. In breaking it down, you see that Google’s efforts are to ensure that searchers have access only to viable jobs.


Taking quick and appropriate action will prevent Google from penalizing your website. Posting jobs for people interested in working is admirable. To continue listing jobs online, it is essential that you only offer available positions.

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