Follow these simple steps to improve your LinkedIn profile:
Step 1: Pay attention to your professional headline
Don’t just use generic phrases like ‘Vice President Sales at Google’ use specific keywords in your title as this is what the potential employers and recruiter will be searching for i.e.:
“VP Sales. Revenue Growth in Cloud-Enabled Technology Solutions. Product Development & Sales Operations Leadership”
(your current position with more keywords added to more fully explain it)
You can also consider adding keywords to your job title.
i.e “Senior Consultant” becomes “Senior Consultant , IT Project Management”.
This provides more keyword detail and a clearer explanation of your job. LinkedIn currently allows you 100 characters for you job title; don’t be afraid to use as many up as possible.
Step 2: Become an “All Star”
If you want your profile to reach high in the search result then make sure you have completed your profile. Ensure you are completing every section possible and go into detail about your accomplishments. You can also upload documents and presentations that you have worked to help display your achievements.
Note: make sure you don’t share any confidential information from your current or former employers.
Step 3: Get connected
Unless a recruiter is using LinkedIn Recruiter or doing a search on a person’s name, LinkedIn search results include only the people who are connected to the searcher as first, second, and third degree connections inside LinkedIn.
The more connections you have, the greater the chance that you will appear in someone’s search results, even if they are a third degree connection. Search results are not sorted by the degree of connection, so a third degree connection can be the top entry in search results.
So, if you have a limited number of connections, your visibility in LinkedIn is extremely limited.
Step 4: How skilled are you?
The Skills and Endorsements section is a very important part of your Profile because Skills are a major part of the search function in LinkedIn Recruiter. It can often be the first criteria a recruiter chooses.
LinkedIn recommends members have at least 5 skills out of a maximum of 50. Members with 5 or more skills are contacted up to 33 times more often by recruiters and other LinkedIn members.
Choose the best LinkedIn Skills for you and your career, and collect endorsements to prove you have them.
Remember: Only your first level connections can endorse you.
Step 5: Set your location
Location is a main search criteria in LinkedIn Recruiter. You can restrict your location to simply a country, but that’s a very generic location which means your Profile will probably be invisible. Instead make sure you set it to the city you want to find work in. You’ll be able to protect your privacy while providing LinkedIn with a very valuable element in their search algorithm.
Step 6: Personalise your URL
This makes it easier for people to search for you by name; otherwise they’re left sifting through the hundreds of Linkedin visitors who have names similar to yours when looking for you.
Most users have some combination of name and several numbers as a default URL. You want to shorten that to your first and last name if possible. If your ideal custom url is already taken, look for a memorable combination of initials and last name, throw in your middle name, or otherwise get creative so that people will be able to find you easily.
Step 7: Professional photograph
LinkedIn calls your photo “your virtual handshake,” and they are probably right. Members with photos receive 21 times more Profile views and up to 36 times more messages.
Without a headshot photo, you are effectively invisible in LinkedIn regardless of how fabulous the rest of your Profile may be. You may appear in search results, but people are very much less likely to click on your name or contact you.
People typically assume that a Profile lacking headshot is for someone who is clueless, hiding something, or fake. None of those reasons will encourage people to click on your name in search results, and your activity in LinkedIn will be very limited.
Make sure you choose your photo wisely it represents you, your brand, think about what image you want to portray. Avoid the same profile photos you use on your other social media accounts; bikini shots or drink in hand at a crowded club would not do well in making a good 1st impression to a potential employer.
Step 8: Buzzwords
Finally, when writing your LinkedIn profile just remember to not use generic “buzzwords”. These are too generic to show up in results and have no meaning. Instead use words/phrases which are relevant to your specific role. For example: where you can, include results of your achievements. i.e increased sales turnover by 15% in 2017.
The data from LinkedIn found that these words were the most common on these profiles: