The Great Resignation, whatever you want to call it, is an excellent opportunity for you to learn how to SEO optimize your LinkedIn profile. Instead of burying you in SEO language you will never remember and barely find helpful, I will provide some quick tips to become more “searchable” in the increasingly hot spot.
Not only does optimizing your profile help attract potential hiring managers and potential clients, but it also increases your personal branding footprint. Optimizing improves your appearance in LinkedIn search results and increases your overall Google search ranking.
I find LinkedIn on my desktop to be the most efficient when optimizing, but I recommend checking the LinkedIn app to ensure each section of your profile appears as described below.
PS- This exercise is good for job seekers, client seekers, and those focused on building their personal brand. You do not have to actively participate in a job search to gain value from an optimized profile.
LinkedIn Profile Headline:
First, search for 20 job postings on LinkedIn that are jobs you want. Please copy and paste each of their headlines into an excel spreadsheet. Then find a free online word cloud generator, convert your excel sheet into a text document, and copy and paste the text into the word cloud generator. The word cloud generator should spit out something that looks like this:
Your goal is to find the seven largest words, indicating they are more popular and pull them into a new headline for your LinkedIn profile.
Common sense should play a role here. If “The” is the most popular word, that is not something you need to focus on. However, if “digital media” is the most popular word, you should pull it out of your list of the top seven words. Using the word cloud above, your list would look something like vice president, digital marketing, metaverse, leader, NFTs, B2B marketing, and results.
These seven important keywords are just a fraction of the 220 characters available in your headline. The next step is to consider numeric statistics of your work that you can share, industries you specialize in, and awards you received. All of these will help pad your description and also add search value. Here are some ideas, based on the list above:
- Vice President of Digital Marketing | Metaverse Leader | Results Include CTR 8% NFT Marketing, B2B Brands
- Digital Marketing, Vice President | Results include creating the first Disney Metaverse, raising $3M for NFTs via marketing efforts
- B2B Digital Marketing Expert | Metavese and NFT Leader | Results-driven with $5M raised in NFTs
Now, believe me, people are going to find you!
LinkedIn Profile Summary Section:
Most of the homework is complete for your summary! Using the same results from your headline research, ensure your summary is keyword rich by including at least your top three keywords in the first three sentences of your summary, which averages 290 characters. Out of the 2000 characters your summary offers, only about 290 appear before LinkedIn automatically cuts it off?
Does this mean you should only write a 290-character summary? No! You want to use all of the space LinkedIn gives you to sell yourself and use relevant keywords. Even though the full summary won’t automatically appear on your page, it counts to Google as valuable SEO space. Even thought it is not immediately seen, the keywords in this section help optimize your LinkedIn profile.
You should include all seven of your top keywords from your headline in the description at least once, but up to three times. Do not go over three, or you will be penalized for keyword stuffing. I know, LinkedIn is a picky little thing.
Work Experience Section:
For each job, 100 characters exist for a job title and 2000 for a job description. The first thing I look for in a new hire is the stats they can prove that speak to their expertise.
For example, I want to hire someone who achieved high click-through and conversion rates on a Google Ads campaign. I do not want to hire someone who puts a bullet point that they have experience in Google Ads. Show, rather than tell.
Showing attracts people to your profile and forces you to use and explore even more keywords that describe your job skills. More keywords optimize your LinkedIn profile.
Again, use as many of the 2000 characters as possible, per the job description.
Find the previous job description that appears on your page automatically when your LinkedIn page is loaded. Ensure that the description includes some of your seven core keywords. This helps disperse keywords across your LinkedIn “home page,” which Google favors.
Skills Endorsement Section:
Hello, endorsements! While these guys should not be relied on by employers looking for new hires, due to their frivolous handouts, they are pretty valuable in SEO. The more endorsements you have for a keyword, the higher you will rank for that keyword in search.
Ask for endorsements from past and present colleagues to heighten your search ranking on five to seven core keywords. Again, ensure these include, or directly reflect, your core seven keywords from your headline research. This assists with the keyword disbursement I referenced previously, which will place you higher in search results and continue to optimize your LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn Profile Recommendations Section:
Ask for recommendations! This is a routine, welcomed thing to do on LinkedIn and will help optimize your page immensely. Guide your recommenders to use two-three of the core keywords from the headline research. This provides a nice round out of your page as far as keyword disbursement goes, something search engines favor. In return, you should offer keyword-rich recommendations for those you have enjoyed working with in your career.
BONUS TIP: Name Your LinkedIn Profile Photo And Banner
We are getting into the weeds now, but every little piece of SEO helps! Use keywords from your core keywords to rename your photo file on your computer before you upload your photo to LinkedIn. Since I am in digital and social media marketing, my profile picture is named “Speaker Digital Marketing Metaverse Social Media Marji J. Sherman.”
I recommend differing your profile picture name from your banner name. This helps to gain traction on more keywords, although there is still some overlap. Mine is “Influencer Metaverse NFTs Digital Marketing Marji J. Sherman.”
Why is my name last?
I am not thinking of branded keywords (keywords that mention your brand straight-out) with my LinkedIn profile. My concern is attracting future clients looking for the services I offer (unbranded keywords).
Please use these tips and tricks to optimize your LinkedIn profile. Appearing in search results, especially on the first page of search rankings, is crucial for brands and you! These LinkedIn tips can easily be tailored to optimize a LinkedIn company page. Instead of searching for open job positions, jobs you want, or other headlines, including services you also offer, look directly at your brand’s top competitors and create a word cloud and a core important keyword list from there.
Social networking on LinkedIn also optimizes your page! Connect with me here.
I would love to hear how applying this LinkedIn optimization to your page improved your LinkedIn experience because I am sure it will! Please leave comments below.
For more inspiration, check out these top LinkedIn profiles:
Need a breather before diving into your LinkedIn? Read How To Get Me Not To Talk To You for a fun take and a bit of a vent-sesh on LinkedIn InMail.
-Marji J. Sherman