Four SEO Tips to Help Employers Find You on LinkedIn!

January 14th, 2013 | Articles, Job Search, Resume | No Comments »

LinkedIn can connect you with large numbers of companies and open positions as long as you cater your profile to the ways employers search for you. By following our SEO tips for improving your profile, you will be able to maximize your ranking within employer searches and land interviews for great jobs!

This year, LinkedIn hit the 187 million member marker and its membership is continuing to rise. With that quantity of potential job seekers in one place, you can bet that employers and recruiters have their eyes on this professional social site! They’re proactively searching for top talent and have taken to sourcing their next hire from the ranks of LinkedIn members. You may ask yourself, “How can I get employers to find me? How can I get my LinkedIn profile to send positive, rippling waves beyond my initial efforts?” The answer is to implement search engine optimization tactics into your profile. Search engine optimization, or SEO for short, is a way to increase your visibility in search engine results by tailoring your content or phrasing to stand out in search parameters. By following the four SEO tactics below, you’ll be able to attract the attention of employers as you continue your own job search.

1.) Keywords: Integrating keywords or buzzwords into the body of your resume is an axiom of resume writing that is equally important to your LinkedIn profile. Most employers and recruiters only skim your profile for about 6 seconds before deciding whether you’re worth more than a perfunctory glance. With that in mind and millions of users, LinkedIn has resorted to a ranking system which hikes or drops down the results page users show up based upon their keyword usage.

To ensure your resume is read by the right people, you need to make sure your profile’s headline, current position, previous position, summary, & skills sections are reasonably seasoned with your chosen keywords. Every sentence should read naturally and employers should never perceive flagrant stacking or bombing of your profile with poorly placed keywords. If they notice a clunky repetition of your magic word, you’ll probably be overlooked as a candidate. Not only that but if you repeat, for example, “search engine optimization” 4,000 times ad nauseam throughout your profile, the good people at LinkedIn will eventually shutdown your profile. So, keep things professional and you’ll still see good results.

2.) List Previous Jobs: When writing a traditional resume the rule of thumb is to limit your list of previous positions to three. Your LinkedIn profile, however, is more SEO friendly when you list around two decades of your professional employment history. There are a few reasons for this. First, if an employer or recruiter is dead set on hiring someone from one of your former companies, you’ll pop up in their search results. Second, by listing a multitude of previous jobs, you can connect with old coworkers, which will broaden your network and increase your outreach ability. That way, even if none of your primary connections are looking to hire, chances are good that someone in your secondary or tertiary list of connections will be on the hunt for someone like you. Best of all, you don’t even have to know about these people for them to find out about you!

3.) Be Careful of your Word Choice and Abbreviations: When looking to make your profile SEO friendly, you want to choose your words carefully to guarantee your chances of turning up in search engine results. Try to anticipate the phrases that employers and recruiters will input into LinkedIn’s search engines and you’ll enjoy far greater success as you rise to the top of searched lists. Try to only use industry jargon that is in widespread usage by your peers and avoid any inappropriate verbiage or slang. Additionally, don’t rely upon any abbreviations that are not part of the common industry dialect. That way, you don’t clip the wings of your keywords and limit the heights they can take you.

4.) Become Active in Industry Groups: Though not strictly an SEO tactic, this tip is a great way to expand your presence beyond your profile. LinkedIn Groups offer you a chance to connect with your contemporaries in the industry while providing you a soapbox to demonstrate your knowledge & expertise on industry topics. By posting pertinent comments, information, or links to your own blog articles, you can distinguish yourself from inactive members of the LinkedIn community and transform your LinkedIn activity into a beacon for passing employers & recruiters. Engaged involvement speaks of your uninterrupted passion and, through your expanded influence on LinkedIn, you’ll enjoy nothing but positive vibes from becoming a visible presence on LinkedIn.

by James Walsh