By Gloria Rand
If you’ve read any of my blog articles on LinkedIn, you know that I stress the importance of using keywords in your profile. Including keywords in your headline and summary, in particular, will help anyone searching on LinkedIn to find you.
Over the last few months, LinkedIn has been giving profiles a makeover. My profile was recently revamped, and after checking out the new features, I decided to take a look at some other social media and SEO pros to see how their profiles looked. What I saw shocked me. Several so-called “experts” were gaming the system, or engaging in a “Black Hat SEO” practice called “keyword stuffing” to make their profiles rank high for a certain keyphrase.
I decided to take a closer look at this phenomenon and searched for the term “SEO.” I was able to view seven profiles of the first ten results that came up. (The other three were 3rd connections, and I would have to upgrade to a paid account to view those profiles). Of those seven, only one person engaged in the normal placement of keywords – what is called “White Hat SEO. ” The good news about that guy – he was number one!
The rest of my 2nd degree connections were taking advantage of the new Projects feature to insert multiple uses of the word “SEO” into their profiles, as you can here:
I blacked out this gentleman’s company name, but if you do your own search, I’m sure you’ll find other SEO “experts” doing the same thing.
Some people may see nothing wrong with this strategy. After all, these “SEO experts” have proven they know how to rank their own LinkedIn profiles well. But I think this is a shady tactic, and if this is the type of practice they engage in, what does that say about their overall work ethic? I would much rather do business with someone who inserts keywords into their profile in a natural manner. Google penalizes websites that engage in keyword stuffing, and I hope LinkedIn will start doing the same.
If you’d like a free evaluation of your LinkedIn profile, contact me today.