If you are thinking about using LinkedIn to search for a job, make sure that your profile represents you in the best way possible. By learning these 19 essential LinkedIn profile tips you are guaranteed to get noticed and increase profile views.
1. Start with a catchy headline
Your headline is the most visible piece of information to recruiters and hiring managers which is why this is LinkedIn Profile tip #1. Instead of writing your current job title and company, make sure that you mention the type of job you are looking for and what you bring to the table.
Here are a couple of examples:
“Sales professional who has literally sold ice to an Eskimo.”
“Organized executive assistant specializing in making your life easier.”
“Author/Writer specializing in LinkedIn tips for job seekers”
For more on LinkedIn headlines, check out LinkedIn Headline Ideas That Don’t Suck.
2. Broaden your location
Do you live in a smaller town next to a large city that you are willing to work in? If so, make sure that you put the closest large city in your location so that you will be easier to find.
3. Add a relevant industry
Having a relevant industry will help recruiters find your LinkedIn profile much easier.
4. Customize your URL
This LinkedIn profile tip is often times overlooked for years. Who wants a URL with a bunch of random numbers next to your name? If you haven’t already, select “Profile” and click the little gear/cog next to your Profile URL under your picture (do this on a desktop). This will take you to a page where you can customize your URL on the upper right-hand side. Edit your URL so that it is (linkedin.com/yourname).
5. Select a professional photo
Make sure that your profile photo represents you in a professional manner. Smile, face the camera and try to dress nicely. Best practice is to take a look at profile photos of others in your industry and see exactly how they are presenting themselves.
6. Add the background photo
A background photo is always a nice touch for your profile. It adds an additional piece of personality and excitement to your professional LinkedIn profile.
7. Spice up your summary
This is your opportunity to show who you really are and happens to be one of the most important LinkedIn profile tips of all. The summary is a great section to not only show off the achievements or any relevant, industries specific, work experiences you have. This is also a great section for you to add some personality. Do not be afraid to speak in the first person and speak directly to the hiring manager/recruiter reading your summary. Your summary should be tailored towards your target audience while telling a story about yourself, your experiences, skills, and achievements. An ideal summary is 3-5 short paragraphs. A good tip would also be to include your contact info in the summary.
8. Use relevant experience
A common mistake that job seekers make is putting too much information on their profile. Make sure that if you are applying for an engineering position you remove your babysitting experience. If you have no relevant work experience, try to think of relevant projects, volunteer work, or even life experiences that relate to whatever field you are trying to get into. A recruiter should be able to skim through your LinkedIn and know exactly what you are looking for without being confused by unrelated work experience.
9. Add a current job even when you're unemployed
If you’re unemployed and your LinkedIn is showing that you have no “current” job it will be a lot harder for a recruiter to find you. LinkedIn offers a filter when searching for people with the option to look for “current”, “past”, or “current and past” professionals in a given industry. In order to save a ton of time, recruiters typically look for “current” employees. A LinkedIn profile tip to help you get noticed is to add your desired job title such as Executive Assistant or Sales Professional followed by Seeking Opportunities or In Transition in the Company Name box.
10. School, work, or projects
For those of you that have little to no work experience, it is extremely important to make up for this with any school or personal projects that relate to your desired job
11. Utilize volunteer experience
Some studies show that people who have volunteer experience on his/her LinkedIn profile are 20% more likely to get hired than those who don’t. I can’t speak to the validity of that statistic, but it definitely can’t hurt to add volunteer work if you have it.
12. Add multimedia
This LinkedIn profile tip is sure to add some color and style to your profile, making it more enjoyable to look at. Many people fail to utilize the multimedia feature on your profile. Take a look at the profile of someone with multimedia under his or her summary and work experiences and compare it to someone who doesn’t. Multimedia can spice up your profile by adding images and showcase some of your work. Add photos, videos, links, and slideshows to your profile. If you don’t have any work to show off, just try adding the URL to your company website.
13. Strategic skills only
A common mistake that job seekers make on their LinkedIn is adding way too many skills. Do you really expect a recruiter to believe you have all of those skills? And even if they did, are ALL of them relevant to the type of job you are looking for? Make sure to be strategic with the skills you add. The more skills you add, the fewer endorsements you will get on each skill. Start with 10-20 relevant skills and work your way up.
14. SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
The skills you add to your profile also play a factor in SEO. But they are not the only things playing a factor. Make sure to review your LinkedIn profile at the end of this article and add any relevant keywords that you think an employer will be using to find someone for the job. This particular Linkedin profile tip is also very useful for your resume. For information on how to use SEO in your resume, read How To Use Resume Keywords When Applying For Jobs.
15. Add contact info
This seems obvious but surprisingly is overlooked a lot. Add your contact info to your profile so that the recruiter can get ahold of you!
16. Join relevant groups
By joining groups you will increase your chances of finding someone, or someone finding you for a job. Of course, you will want to be strategic about the groups you join. Join industry-specific groups and begin networking with other professionals in your desired role. You might even run into someone that can offer you some additional LinkedIn profile tips that we haven't mentioned.
17. Add Interests
Adding interests to your LinkedIn profile allows your viewer to learn a little bit more about you. Who knows, maybe a common interest that you have with the hiring manager will be the little extra push he needed to give you a call.
18. Network within your desired industry
Groups aren’t the only way to meet industry-specific people. Once your profile is completed don’t be afraid to search LinkedIn for people in your desired industry. Use the search bar at the top to type in your desired job title or industry and then add a filter to view only your second-degree connections. These people have the best chance of accepting your invite since you already have a mutual friend in common.
For the inside story on how one LinkedIn member went from 100 to 15,000 connections without paying a penny, check out LinkedIn Networking Tips for Job Seekers.
19. LinkedIn Profile Tips for Job Seeker's Summary
Did you know that there is a company out there that will not only write all of these LinkedIn profile tips specifically for you but they will also apply to jobs for you? Finding a job can be a full-time job in itself. Why waste time on your LinkedIn and job applications when you could have a Professional do the work for you. Check out Find My Profession to learn more about our LinkedIn Makeover and Career Finder services.