How to Optimize Your Linkedin Profile in 10 Steps

Mar 27, 2020 | Productivity

You might already be familiar with the importance of LinkedIn in today’s job market, but simply being present there will do you no favors.

With such a hard market for jobs, it gets all the more important to stay up-to-date with all the latest trendsThat’s where LinkedIn Optimization comes into play.

These are the sections that you need to pay attention to when optimizing your LinkedIn profile:

  1. Profile URL
  2. Background picture
  3. Profile picture
  4. Headline
  5. Summary
  6. Professional Experience
  7. Skills
  8. Endorsements
  9. Connections
  10. Interests

LinkedIn Profile Optimization in 10 Easy Steps:

Step 1: Profile URL

On the top right corner of your profile, you’ll see the ‘Edit public profile & URL’ option. Click on it to optimize your profile URL. You’ll see your profile URL written after www.linkedin.com/in/. Replace everything written after this with your name.

Then click on ‘Save’ to check the availability of this URL. If the customized URL is not available, keep trying for an available one by adding numbers or other characters until you get an available URL that suits you.

Step 2: Background Picture

The next thing which needs to be optimized is your background picture. Optimizing the background picture plays a major role in increasing your visibility on LinkedIn searches.

Refrain from choosing a random picture as your background picture just because you think it looks pretty.

Make the picture relevant to your work and profile. You can even customize it to talk about your most desirable skills. For example Business Intelligence, Strategy Execution & Transformation, Customer Retention, etc.

Step 3: Profile Picture

Next, you need to optimize your profile picture. Remember that LinkedIn is a professional platform, so pictures that would be great for other social media platforms such as Instagram or Facebook will not garner the same appeal here.

Hence, avoid using full-length pictures in clothes that could be considered unprofessional. Your best bet is to go with a portrait size picture in professional clothes as your LinkedIn profile picture.

Step 4: LinkedIn Profile Headline

Next in line is the headline section. If you leave this section uncustomized, LinkedIn will by default display your current/most recent job profile here.

Your headline will be displayed right under your name and most probably be one of the first things that a person visiting your profile will see.

The best way to optimize this section is to write 5-6 of your top skills in it using separators as LinkedIn uses keywords to rank your profile.

Effectively optimize your LinkedIn profile headline to bring positive attention to your profile.

Step 5: Summary

Moving on, now you need to pay attention to the Summary section of your LinkedIn profile. Here you are provided with a character limit of 1983 characters. Use it wisely to drastically increase your visibility on LinkedIn.

The best way to utilize this space is by dividing the summary into 4 subsections. Namely: Career Highlights, Key Certifications, Areas of Expertise, and Technical Skills.

Start this section by mentioning the number of years of experience you have and then continue further depending on whether or not you are looking for job opportunities.

If you are not actively looking for a job, then write your current designation. However, if you are job hunting, optimize the job title as per your target profile. Further, write 2-3 lines explaining the work in which you’re extremely proficient.

Next, comes the first sub-section, ‘Career Highlights’. Here, you need to frame one-liner points about your career highlights. Mention any big projects you were a part of or any significant awards you received throughout your career.

After this, make the second subsection, named ‘Certifications’. Here, write all the relevant certifications which you’ve completed so far. Also, make sure to mention the name of the certifying authority along with the year in which you completed that certification.

Now, make the third subsection and name it ‘Areas Of Expertise’. All your non-technical skills will be written under this subsection. For example Customer Retention, Team Management, Data Analytics, etc.

Finally, draft the last sub-section which is ‘Technical Skills’. This is where you’ll write all your technical skills. For example, a software engineer might write their technical skills like Java, Python, C#/.Net, Mean, Ruby, etc. here.

Step 6: Professional experience section

The next step is to optimize the Professional Experience section. This section also calls for sub-sections in the Description section of the Experience section. These three subsections are Achievements, Functions & Deliverables.

In the Achievements sub-section, write 2-3 points describing your roles and responsibilities at your workplace. Make sure that you include performance figures to exactly showcase your potential.

For example, depending on your work profile you can mention the level of accuracy of the models which you developed, the time which you were able to save by using automation, etc.

Now we move on to the second subsection, which is ‘Functions’. Here, mention your non-technical skills. For example Inventory Control, Process Improvement, Stakeholder Management, etc.

Finally, in the last sub-section, which is ‘Deliverables’, you need to write 2-3 points concerning your major contributions to the organization. Pinpoint your career highlights here and make the recruiter see that you will be an excellent choice for their organization.

Step 7: Skills section

To optimize the skills section, all you need to do is include all your technical and key skills which you have already mentioned in the summary section above.

It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the keywords being used in your specific industry to communicate particular skills. Rather than writing down the skills in your own language, use these specific keywords to increase your visibility on LinkedIn.

Step 8: Endorsements

Moving on to the endorsements section, here you need to reach out to present or past colleagues to endorse you for various skills. Genuine endorsements from managers and colleagues can boost your profile’s ratings immensely.

You can also begin by offering endorsements to colleagues in exchange for one. However, endorse back a colleague only after 3 months of them endorsing you as LinkedIn can detect these planned exchange of endorsements and will reduce its impact.

If you do not wait 3 months or endorse them back immediately after they have endorsed you, then your endorsements won’t be as effective as you’d want them to.

Step 9: LinkedIn Connections

After you have optimized your profile, it’s time to move on and start gathering relevant and useful LinkedIn connections. The only way to optimize LinkedIn connections is to stay active on LinkedIn.

This includes posting professional industry-specific content on LinkedIn and actively liking, commenting and sharing professional posts that other people in your network have shared.

Join groups that interest you and start actively participating in its activities to put yourself on the radar of the right people.

Step 10: Interests

Lastly, optimize the interests section of your LinkedIn profile. You can make the most of LinkedIn if you optimize this section strategically.

If you want only those posts to appear on your feed that are of interest to you, make sure to optimize your interests since your LinkedIn feed is optimized based on your interests.

If you want to optimize your LinkedIn profile further, go to the ‘Add profile section’ option given at the top of your LinkedIn profile. Clicking on it will give you a drop-down menu, wherein you can see a list of other sections that are not present in this article.

You can go ahead and optimize these sections as well if they apply to you.

Closing

Thanks to our friends at Hiration, an AI-powered online resume builder, for contributing this post. So, now go and use this expert advice to optimize your LinkedIn profile.

Photo by Greg Bulla