This is the first of several posts that will focus on tips and tricks from improving search rankings for non-Google search engines. The would include social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, in addition to some popular freelancing sites like oDesk and Elance.

How To Increase Your Search Rank On LinkedIn

LinkedIn is by far the best business networking platform in the world. Launched in 2003, LinkedIn now has over 300,000,000 members in over 200 countries and territories (more LinkedIn stats here).

Often referred to as the ‘Facebook for grownups’,  and now a publicly traded company,  it’s safe to say that LinkedIn is officially all grown up. Recruiters are scouring LinkedIn for talent and publishers are including it as one of the top social media platforms for outbound marketing.

linkedin-logoHere are a few other interesting statistics about LinkedIn.

  • 3+ million business pages
  • 2+ million group pages
  • 5,400 full-time employees
  • 67% of members are located outside of the United States
  • 2 new members join every second

LinkedIn has become so popular for business networking and recruiting,  that it has effectively replaced the physical resume and traditional application process.

What can you do to increase your search rank on LinkedIn so recruiters start coming to you?

LinkedIn has a built in search engine to help users find other members, interest groups and companies.  When a company wants to make a new hire, they search to find people with the right qualifications. With 300 million members, you can assume that list can get pretty long, even with a filtered search. To maximize our chances being found, we need to do everything we can to increase our search rank on LinkedIn’s search engine.

While it’s difficult to know exactly how their search algorithm works, there are a few guaranteed things you can do to increase your rankings.

Starting with a few profile tweaks and some consistent usage, you’ll be on your way to being the top candidate out there.

How To Increase Your Search Rank On LinkedInKnow Your Search Terms

This is important. Everything that follows is based on using the right search terms. For example, I’m a freelance marketing consultant that specializes in WordPress, SEO, Adwords, Social Media Marketing and Graphic Design, so those words and phrases appear multiple times in my profile.

You can take a look at my LinkedIn profile here for an example of where I use my key search terms.

Complete Your Profile

The most important thing you can do is to be sure you have a complete profile that makes good use of keywords to describe what you do. For example, if you’re an accountant, be sure you’re profile description includes the word accountant, accounting, tax, audit, or any other sub-specialties.

You want it to read well and look good, but each word matters so be as detailed as possible. Be sure that your search terms appear in both the title and description of your profile page in addition to your individual job descriptions.

Join Professional Groups in Your Industry

There over 2 million group pages on LinkedIn, joining a few specific to your field with the most members and a high level of activity will add benefit to your profile. Remember these groups will appear on your profile, so pick groups that represent your professional areas of interest. We’re not looking for hobbies or anything else that might draw attention away from your professional profile and career accomplishments..

Engage With Your Groups and Connections

The more you use LinkedIn and engage with your connections, company pages, and group pages, the easier you’ll be to find. Just because it’s a business network doesn’t mean it’s not social.

Pick a group or two that you regularly contribute to whether it be sharing articles, answering members questions or simply joining the conversation. You’ll be surprised how collaborative and useful some groups can be.

 Share, Share, Share!

Share an article or other useful resource that relates to you’re professional interests on a weekly basis and be sure to reply promptly to any comments. As a rule of thumb, avoid sharing anything that doesn’t relate directly or indirectly to your profession.

No cute cat pics, no cute kid pics, no selfies, no politics, nothing too negative, and nothing too controversial. Think dinner with the in-laws and just play it safe.

With consistent effort and careful monitoring, the above strategies have been proven to help improve search ranked on linked. Do you have any other strategies that work for you? Feel free to include them in the comments below.