Your LinkedIn Summary section is one of the most important sections in your LinkedIn profile. It is one of the first sections anybody visiting your profile would read to learn more about you and decide whether they should connect with you. Whenever we help candidates with their LinkedIn makeover, we emphasize the importance of completing every section of your profile and keeping it up-to-date. With more than 500 million users on the platform, it is an excellent way of networking with companies, recruiters, hiring managers, and professionals from your industry to land your dream job.
Yet, most users fail to write a compelling summary on their profile. In this blog, we'll help you understand how to write a powerful LinkedIn summary and cover the following topics:
- What is a LinkedIn summary?
- Why do you need a great LinkedIn summary?
- How to write a compelling LinkedIn summary to improve visibility?
- Mistakes to avoid when writing your LinkedIn summary
- How does an optimized LinkedIn summary affect your search ranking?
- LinkedIn summary examples for job seekers
What Is A LinkedIn Summary?
The LinkedIn summary section is the primary source of information that new and prospective employers use to determine whether to contact you. This is where you tell your audience what you do, what you know, and how you can help. Additionally, you can showcase your unique skills in this section to stand out from other candidates and explain why you would be a perfect match for a job opening.
Also known as the "About" section, it has a limit of 2000 characters. You can use it to share details that would hook a potential employer or connection to send an invite or message to you.
Think of it as an elevator pitch. You can use this section to promote yourself and convey your professional story to the person checking your profile.
Why Do You Need A Great LinkedIn Summary?
87% of recruiters use LinkedIn regularly to connect with potential candidates, and three people are hired every minute through the platform.
The summary section of your LinkedIn profile is a key place to showcase your professional strengths and highlight your accomplishments. The summary is also a place to show that you are an expert in your field of study and have experience with a particular company or industry.
If you have a profile that's not speaking to the right audience, it can be an opportunity cost for you — because it's taking away from your ability to reach new people or connect with potential employers who would be interested in the skills you bring to the table.
A compelling LinkedIn summary would help recruiters and hiring managers to learn exactly what they need to know about you and encourage them to get in touch with you for any openings in their company. Not having any information in the summary section or adding incomplete information would hurt your chances of receiving interview calls from top tech companies.
How To Write A Compelling LinkedIn Summary To Improve Visibility
1. Make sure your start hooks the reader
Those who visit your profile can only see the first three lines of your summary. Only when they click on 'See more' can they continue reading the rest.
It is important that your headline catches someone's attention and makes them want to learn more about you.
One way to do this is to start with a strong opening line. This could be your best skill, something that sets you apart, or something you're most proud of. Take a moment to consider what makes you unique, interesting, or interesting enough to make someone want to find out more about you on LinkedIn.
Another approach is to introduce yourself with something you want your readers to know about you.
Whichever you choose to start your summary, make sure your first three lines are strong and will keep the reader engaged.
2. Tell your story
Your LinkedIn summary should tell your story.
Your professional profile should be succinct and convey the most important facts about you. It should be able to stand alone as a stand-alone sentence, but not at the expense of being compelling and informative.
Focus on the narrative of the summary rather than making it a point-wise description of your work as you would in a resume. It should share your professional journey/skills with the reader to grab their attention.
3. Optimize it to include relevant keywords
As a job seeker, you know that one of the most important things you can do is to optimize your LinkedIn profile. This means ensuring your summary includes relevant keywords to help recruiters find you.
Identify the keywords most relevant to your experience and skills - then sprinkle them throughout your summary, making sure you mention them concerning your work history and achievements.
But what exactly are the best keywords to use in your LinkedIn summary?
Here are a few tips:
- Use keywords that are relevant to your industry and profession.
- Use keywords that are specific to your skills and experience.
- Use keywords that are commonly used in job descriptions.
- Use keywords likely to be used by recruiters when searching for candidates.
Including these keywords in your LinkedIn summary will help ensure that your profile comes up in search results, making employers more likely to find and contact you.
4. Keep it concise
It is important to keep your summary concise. LinkedIn is often used by recruiters and hiring managers to screen candidates; a long, drawn-out summary can put them off.
Your summary should be a concise snapshot of your professional history and successes. Don't try to cram too much information into this section – you can always provide more details in other areas of your profile.
Your summary is usually read in seconds, so grab the reader's attention from the start. Use strong language to sell yourself, and highlight your most relevant skills and experience. Remember, your summary is your elevator pitch – so make it count!
By keeping your summary concise, you can make a great first impression on those who view your profile.
5. Include numbers and data
If you want your LinkedIn profile to stand out, include numbers and data in your summary.
Numbers and data are especially important in data-driven fields such as marketing or finance. But even if you're not, employers will be impressed by your ability to use data to support your professional claims.
You could say, for example, that you increased sales by 25 percent in your first year and by 50 percent in your second year at your previous job instead of simply saying you increased sales. The more concrete the data, the more likely you will catch someone's attention.
Hence, if you want to leave a lasting impression on LinkedIn, include some concrete numbers. It'll make all the difference!
6. Include a clear CTA
It is your LinkedIn summary where you get the opportunity to make an excellent first impression and convince people that you are someone worth connecting with.
Make sure you end your summary with a solid call to action. This could be like "Connect with me if you're interested in discussing XYZ" or "Feel free to reach out if you need help with XYZ."
A clear call to action will make it easy for people to know how to get in touch with you and show that you're proactive and interested in connecting with others.
Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Your LinkedIn Summary
Now that you know what you SHOULD focus on when crafting your LinkedIn summary, here are a few mistakes to avoid!
1. Don't mention information you already have on your resume
Your resume is a more formal document that outlines your work experience, educational background, and skills. A LinkedIn summary provides a snapshot of you and your career to potential employers and connections.
While you want to include some of the same information that you would on your resume, you also want to take the opportunity to showcase your personality and give a more detailed account of your professional journey. Take advantage of your LinkedIn summary to share your story and connect with others.
2. Don't make things up
Most people make sure their LinkedIn profile is as impressive as possible. Presenting themselves in the best light and showcasing their skills and experiences is important to them. However, there is a line between putting your best foot forward and lying. And unfortunately, many people cross that line when writing their LinkedIn summary.
When writing your LinkedIn summary, it is essential to be honest. Don't exaggerate your skills or experience, and don't make up information. Not only is it dishonest, but it can also come back to bite you. A LinkedIn profile containing false information will negatively affect your professional reputation and do you no favors.
So, when you're writing your LinkedIn summary, keep it honest. Highlight your skills and experience, but don't exaggerate. It's the best way to present yourself in a positive light without crossing the line into dishonesty.
3. Don't focus too much on your roles and responsibilities, but rather on accomplishments
When writing your LinkedIn summary, it's important to focus on your accomplishments and not simply your tasks and responsibilities. This will set you apart from other candidates and help you land the job you want.
Sure, your potential employer wants to know what you're capable of, but they're also interested in what you've accomplished in your previous roles. So, take the time to write about your successes, and don't be afraid to toot your own horn a bit. This is your chance to shine!
And, if you're unsure where to start, simply look at your previous job descriptions and see what you can highlight from your time in those positions. Chances are, you have more accomplishments than you realize. So, go ahead and start writing them down – you'll be glad you did when you land your dream job.
How Does An Optimized LinkedIn Summary Affect Your Search Ranking?
An optimized LinkedIn summary can definitely affect your search ranking, especially if you are active on the platform. If you have a well-written, keyword-rich summary, it is more likely that you will show up higher in search results.
Most hiring professionals use LinkedIn Recruiter to shortlist candidates for open roles. LinkedIn Recruiter allows them to search for candidates on LinkedIn using keyword search, Boolean search, and 20+ advanced search filters. LinkedIn Recruiter also allows them to get smart recommendations based on their previous search. As a job seeker, if you have an optimized summary with relevant keywords for the new role you are targeting, your profile will show up on a recruiter's search, increasing your chances of getting interview calls from top companies without even applying to them.
Of course, having an optimized summary is just one part of the equation – you also need to have a strong profile overall and be active on the site. But an optimized summary is a good start if you want to ensure you are doing everything possible to improve your search ranking.
LinkedIn Summary Examples For Job Seekers
You've read quite a bit about how to write a compelling LinkedIn summary in this blog. But let us look at some good and bad LinkedIn summaries to understand what we just discussed with examples.
Here's an example of a poor LinkedIn summary:
A leader with a proven track record of high accomplishments in several areas and the ability to drive change. I am highly organized, support empowerment and teamwork, highly adaptable, have strong business sense, am a good communicator, results-oriented, and optimistic.
I have worked as a Software Engineer at a company in India and am looking for new job opportunities.
Let us discuss everything that is wrong in this summary.
- The summary lacks facts and figures. The candidate does not have any metrics to highlight the impact of their work.
- They only talk about their qualities and not accomplishments. The summary is subjective and does not highlight any points that make the candidate a potential employee.
- The summary does not highlight any skills or information about what work they've done. The recruiters don't know whether they'll be a good fit for their open positions, and they would not contact them immediately.
- It is not optimized and does not have relevant keywords. It is less likely that recruiters would use keywords like "highly organized," "optimistic," or "teamwork" to look for Software Engineering candidates. This means their profile wouldn't appear in the search results, leading to a missed opportunity.
What would a good LinkedIn summary look like, then? Read ahead.
I am currently a Software Engineer at XYZ company with 5+ years of experience managing teams of 50-100 members. Responsible for managing more than 30 projects with budgets ranging from $100K to $1.7M.
Before joining XYZ company, I have -
- Founded two startups currently valuing XYZ
- Worked as a Machine Learning Engineer at ABC company
I have also worked on projects utilizing IBM Lotus Notes Domino, IBM WebSphere, and Microsoft .NET technologies.
Please get in touch with me for any new opportunities.
What makes this summary good?
- The candidate has backed every skill with facts and figures to highlight what their accomplishment was.
- The candidate has covered information about their present and past work experience in just a few lines.
- The summary includes their areas of expertise and skills so if a recruiter looks up candidates with these skills on LinkedIn, their profile would rank higher in the search results.
Not sure where to get started? Use these two sample templates to start crafting your LinkedIn summary. Do not use it as it is, make any necessary changes to optimize it for your target roles.
As a computer science student, I have a strong foundation in programming, software development, and computer science theory. I am experienced in Java, Python, and C++ and have developed several web and mobile applications.
My experience includes web-based, multi-threaded applications and front-end development with the latest web technologies. I have also worked on projects utilizing IBM Lotus Notes Domino, IBM WebSphere, and Microsoft .NET technologies.
I am always looking to learn new technologies and am currently exploring data science and machine learning. Currently seeking full-time Software Engineer opportunities.
Please feel free to contact me on LinkedIn for any new opportunities.
# Experienced Professional
I'm an experienced software engineer with over six years of experience and a reputation for building high-quality, scalable systems.
I've worked as a software developer for companies like Amazon and Facebook. I'm skilled in building complex and robust applications that can handle large amounts of traffic from multiple web servers and database servers. I love working on challenging and rewarding projects, but also measurable by the number of users or views the application has.
LinkedIn summaries are an excellent way to introduce yourself and your skills to potential employers or customers. A well-written summary can help you stand out from other applicants by including relevant information and proofreading it. Need a LinkedIn makeover to up your job search? Get in touch with Careerflow team of 100+ FAANG mentors now!