As of 2023, more than 1 billion professionals are using LinkedIn, and each week, over 49 million individuals are actively searching for their next job on the platform.
LinkedIn has become a crucial tool for job seekers looking to connect with potential employers and showcase their professional skills and experience.
This article will provide valuable tips and strategies to help you optimize your LinkedIn profiles and increase your chances of landing your dream job.
1. Choose the right profile picture for LinkedIn
The profile image you use is one of the most important aspects of your online presence. Select a professional and clear headshot that reflects your personal brand and aligns with the industry you are targeting.
Use these tips to ensure your LinkedIn profile image is optimized:
- Be the only person in the image
- The best size for a LinkedIn photo is 400×400 pixels.
- Have a solid background that doesn’t distract
- Your face should be at least 60% of the image
- The facial expressions count more than you might think
- The image should be sharp and well-lit.
- Make sure your image is recent so that you’re easily recognizable.
2. Add a background photo.
Utilize the background photo to showcase your professional interests, such as a relevant industry event, conference, or use a tool like Canva to create a free LinkedIn banners in minutes. Avoid busy designs or anything distracting.
For example, you can include some of the following into your LinkedIn header:
- Mention your profession — could be your product or a list of your services.
- Talk about your value proposition briefly.
- Showcase the results you’ve generated for your business or the company you work with.
- Put up a quote that relates to the work you do.
3. Make your LinkedIn Profile Headline attention-grabbing.
You have 220 characters to get very precise about who you are and what you offer, make sure your LinkedIn profile headline is attention-grabbing, and consider using keywords that highlight your expertise and value proposition.
Here’s what to include in your LinkedIn headline:
- Your current job title & company
- What you can offer to an employer
- Career achievements
- Education level
- Names of valuable certifications
- Industry you work for
- Professional skills
You can also transform your role into action that will grab recruiters’ attention. Here are few;
- Instead of “Content Creator,” try “Creating content that boosts engagement by 30%.
- Instead of “Sales Representative,” try “Top-performing sales rep exceeding quota by 200%.”
4. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile URL
It is now recommended to include your LinkedIn profile on your CV. To do so, your LinkedIn URL should be optimized, rather than one that includes random numbers or letters.
Here’s how to do it:
- View your profile page and click “Edit public profile & URL” in the top right corner.
- On the new page, look at the section in the top right corner called “Edit your custom URL.”
- Click on the icon of a pencil next to the URL.
- Fill it with your desired text—you can use up to 100 letters or numbers.
Sample of Profile URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dimejiganiyu/
5. Use the Profile About Section to Tell Your Story.
An optimized LinkedIn summary should contain 3–5 sentences that outline your professional experience, highlights your passion, what businesses or organizations you worked for, and what makes you unique
A helpful summary includes:
- A compelling overview of who you are
- Your achievement and experience
- What you can do for potential clients
- Whether you’re open to new opportunities or not
- If you offer a service: include a clear call to action
6. List Your Relevant Skills:
The skill section is a crucial component of your LinkedIn profile. You have the option to include up to 50 competencies, so take the time to review the skill list and select those that align with your target job and industry.
Here’s how to optimize the LinkedIn profile’s Skills section:
- Make sure to include relevant keywords that are commonly used in your industry.
- When adding skills to your profile, consider including evidence to support your proficiency. Like certification, endorsement, education, etc
- As your career progresses and you acquire new skills, make sure to regularly update your LinkedIn profile
- Remember to include soft skills that match your job profile: .
7. Show Career Highlights in the Experience Section
The “Experience” section of your LinkedIn Profile allows you to share your previous and current roles, positions of responsibilities, and details of your past work experience with your professional network.
However, adding details about all your past jobs and responsibilities might take a lot of effort, so it’s better to approach this strategically.
Here’s how to optimize your LinkedIn profile’s Experience section:
- Start with an appealing opening sentence.
First impressions matter! Use two or three impactful sentences to showcase your experience, key achievements, and industry expertise.
- Add positions that are relevant to your current career goals:
Leave irrelevant role you have taken that doesn’t add to your expertise. for example, if you have ten years of experience as a registered nurse, there is no need to mention a part-time babysitting job from high school.
- Add relevant keywords and make your experience section search-friendly.
Review the job descriptions of the roles you are listing, pick some relevant keywords from the description and add these to your experience section. These will make your profile searchable on LinkedIn by recruiters
- Use action word and figures in your accomplishment:
Add around 3–6 sentences describing your responsibilities in each job, and use facts & figures to show how great you performed in your roles.
Bonus Tip: Take inspiration from others’ LinkedIn Profiles. It’s a good idea to check the profiles of people in your network to see how they write their profile.They may have some unique and inspiring ideas that you can incorporate into your own profile.
8. Fill in your Education Section
Education plays an important role in your LinkedIn profile. Not only is this information placed at the very top of your profile, visible within your search result listing, but also it helps your profile achieve All-Star ranking.
Here are the best practices:
- List your most recent education first
- Include the name of the institution, degree earned, field of study, and graduation date.
- Add any relevant academic honors or awards.
- If you haven’t completed a degree, include the coursework you completed or your current point.
9. Add Licenses & certifications section
When you completed a course or a series of courses and earned a certificate, it’s best to add your certificate to your LinkedIn profile. Whenever you complete a new course, attend a workshop, or get a certificate, add and post about it. This will help you stand out from the crowd on LinkedIn and boost your career prospects by showing recruiters that you are striving for perfection.
10. Ask for Recommendations
Think of LinkedIn endorsements and recommendations as a mini-love letters illuminating your professional identity. Endorsements give people viewing your profile a quick, visual sense of what you’re valued for, they are personal testimonials written to illustrate the experience of working with you.
Seek recommendations from every corner of your network – Members of your LinkedIn network have the ability to endorse your skills, affirming your expertise in an expert area. Likewise, you can help others. It just takes a few clicks.
11. Take a skills assessment.
Complete LinkedIn’s skills assessments to validate your expertise and demonstrate your proficiency in specific areas, enhancing your credibility as a job seeker.
Data shows that candidates with verified skills are around 30% more likely to be hired for the roles they apply for – and displaying proof your abilities strengthens your personal brand more generally as well.
LinkedIn provides various methods of proving your key skills. Many individuals choose to take Skills Assessments quizzes, which are effective for showcasing hard skills like proficiency in Microsoft Excel or programming languages. Achieving a skill badge requires scoring within the top 30%.
Is it okay to let your LinkedIn profile display #OpenToWork?
If you are currently not employed and actively seeking job opportunities, the Open to Work feature is advisable for you. It is a simple and passive method to inform your network about your job-seeking status. LinkedIn also promotes your profile to recruiters in search of potential candidates.
However, if you are conducting an undercover job search, it is not recommended to display the green #OpenToWork frame on your profile. This is because LinkedIn displays it to everyone who visits your profile or views your LinkedIn activity, including your current employer.
By implementing these tips, you can transform your LinkedIn profile from a static resume into a dynamic platform that showcases your unique value and attracts your dream job. It’s important to make sure your LinkedIn profile is optimized to stand out from the crowd.