Keywords are something commonly associated with search engine optimisation (SEO).
However, it turns out that they are a pretty important element of LinkedIn too.
The fact of the matter is that recruiters and employers use this social media channel to find top professionals on a daily basis.
And their way of finding you…yep, you guessed it – keywords.
If your LinkedIn profile doesn’t have the list of words or phrases they are actively searching for, you’ve got a very small chance of being discovered.
So the question is; what keywords should you use in your profile and what sections do you need to include them in?
To help turn your LinkedIn profile into a searchable dream, here’s a complete guide containing everything you need to know.
Do your research
If you have a few ideal employers you’d love to work for, do a bit of undercover work and try to find out which terms they commonly use.
The best way to do this is to look at job descriptions for the type of positions that you’re interested in and review various industry terms.
However, you need to make sure that you’re using specific keywords the potential employer or recruiter believes is the most important.
Ideally, you need to find a balance between the two so that you cover every possible outcome.
Pro recruiter top tip
As well as keywords, there are certain elements you need to think about to ensure that your LinkedIn profile is up to scratch – including:
– Making sure you have a professional profile picture
– Correcting any typos and grammatical issues
– Having too many connections
– Choosing the wrong skills
– You’ve used a load of dreadful buzzwords
If you need any extra help brushing up the appearance of your LinkedIn profile, take a look at our previous blog: ’12 Rookie Mistakes You’re Making on LinkedIn (Probably)’.
Populating the right sections
Even if you’ve carried out thorough research on company and industry keywords, it could be rendered useless if you fail to use them in the right parts of your profile.
As a rule of thumb, the sections of your LinkedIn profile closest to the top generally rank higher for SEO purposes – so these should be your priority.
- Job titles
- Professional headline
- The summary
Below, is a breakdown of best practices for each.
The key to this section on your LinkedIn profile is consistency.
You should have the same job titles on your CV and online profile or it may tarnish your credibility.
Feel free to add relevant keywords to your titles for SEO purposes, but just be sure not to completely alter it.
Once you’re happy with this, make sure it says the same on your CV.
The professional headline is often overlooked by a lot of professionals, yet it’s arguably the most important part of your LinkedIn profile.
Despite only giving you 120 characters to play with, it encourages you to cut the fluff and only use SEO-rich keywords.
Your headline should contain terms employers and recruiters will search for like job titles and similar alternatives.
For example, a copywriter should use the keywords: ‘copywriting’, ‘content writer’ and ‘social media manager’.
Employers and recruiters will often use different terms for the same type of job role, so you need to make sure you can be found in every case.
However, you shouldn’t just list a load of keywords as it doesn’t really talk to potential new employers.
It’s always good to address the audience and tell them how you can help solve common problems.
For instance, “A professional copywriter, content writer and social media manager helping businesses save time and generate results”.
This is usually the section that a lot of candidates don’t really think about.
Sure, you can mention what inspires you and inject a bit of personality into it, but what about keywords?
An interesting summary of yourself needs to include what skills you bring to the table on a daily basis, which gives you a golden opportunity to add several keywords.
If you want to stray away from the ‘what you’ve done, what you are best at and how you can do it for their company’ approach, try focusing on a specific role instead.
Use wording you see in specific job descriptions of roles you’re interested in.
If you’re actively looking for work, you need to spend just as much time on your LinkedIn profile as you do on your CV.
While using recruitment agencies and job boards is an integral part of the job search process, there’s always going to be certain opportunities that you miss if you only use these avenues.
Having a heavily optimised LinkedIn profile will help bring recruiters and employers to you – sometimes before they’ve even posted a job ad.
It’ll make your life a lot easier and maximise your chances of landing your dream job sooner rather than later.
Enjoyed reading this? Then check out these other handy blogs: