All things being equal, if one person applies directly to a company online, and another person has their resume handed to the hiring manager from someone they trust with a personal recommendation about why they fit the position, is briefed before each interview about what to expect and how to approach the interviews, and has someone who can negotiate salary for them, express any concerns for them and get delicate questions answered for them without having to ask themselves, who has the best chance of getting the job? Obviously going through a good recruiter gives you a tremendous advantage. However, your approach to the application process needs to be different than just applying to jobs on a corporate website.
Recruiters find people for jobs, not jobs for people. Knowing that, it’s important to position yourself as someone they need to find.