Quantified Career: Measuring Your Visibility on Linkedin
Have you ever wondered how “visible” is your profile on Linkedin? Those “Your profile has been viewed by X people in the past Y day” analytical crumbs that Linkedin disperses to those of us with free membership may be not enough to gauge the “searchability” of your profile. Still, paying for the membership is not really worth it, unless you are a recruiter or in a desperate need for a job. Well, there is a couple of additional metrics that you can “squeeze out” from your profile stats: the “clickthrough” and “conversion” rates. This is how you can calculate them.
If you go to “Who viewed your profile” on Linkedin, in the upper right corner you will see the Trends graph that provides with the the breakdown of how many times your profile was viewed on Linkedin in last 90 days Views), and how many times it appeared in Linkedin searches (Appearances in Searches). For instance, my Linkedin profile stats today looked like this:
The totals for these two metrics, Total Views and Total Appearances in Searches, can be used to compute the “click-through” rate (CTR) for my profile:
CTR = Total Views/Total Appearances in Search
In my case, the clickthrough rate for the last 90 days was 66/429 = 15.4%. In other words, when someone searched for profiles on Linkedin using certain keywords, the chance that my profile was of interest to that person was 15.4%. This is not a bad number, and I could probably increase it by writing a more catchy headline, and perhaps, including more keywords in my profile. But do these “views” actually translate into anything? Well, if “anything” means inquiries and invitations to connect from headhunters and recruiters, then the “conversion” rate is the metrics is easy to calculate:
Conversion Rate = Number of Inquires and Invitations in Linkedin Inbox/Number of Views.
There were total of 6 messages and invites from the headhunters, recruiters and HR staff in my inbox, received in last 90 days. Thus, the conversion rate is 6/66 = 9%. Now, I consider this number to be a bit low. This could be a function of both the job market situation (it’s a summer, after all), and relevancy of the key words in my profile. When composing my profile, I included as many keywords (e.g., “predictive modeling”, “data fusion”, “segmentations”) as possible. Some of these keywords, like “analytics” and “programming”, may be relevant to more than one industry, but have multiple meanings. For instance, I noticed that my profile receives a lot of visits from HR staff and headhunters in such industries as web technologies and online advertising. That is because my profile has keywords “analytics” and “segmentations”. I, however, specialize in traditional market research, and my analytical skills may not be applicable when it comes to online advertising. Perhaps, I should use keywords that are more specific to my industry.
Finally, I would not treat these numbers too seriously. Remember, these metrics, just like any other SEO metrics, are “fluid” and will be certainly changing over time, and not only because of the content of your profile. The job market situation, seasonal and industrial trends, and other factors may result in serious fluctuations in the clickthrough and conversion rates. It makes sense to compute them on a monthly or 90-days basis.
For tips on how to optimize your Linkedin profiles for search engines, check out this handy article.