How to Find the Right Keywords for Your LinkedIn Profile

How to Find the Right Keywords for Your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is the perfect platform for building a pipeline of qualified prospects, but only if you understand how it works and use the right tools to achieve your goals.

The use of well-placed keywords is foundational to any social media lead generation strategy, but using paid research tools like Ahrefs, Moz and SEMrush can be too costly for small business owners. Fortunately, there are several free tools available for those of us with limited budgets.

What are keywords, and why should you care?

Keywords are the terms prospective clients and customers use to find you when they perform a search. It’s critical that you get them right. If you use the right keywords, prospects can find your profile easily. If you use the wrong ones, they can’t find you at all.

The Evolution of Keywords

Search engines have evolved in complexity over time. Where once they focused on short-tail keywords (one to two-word phrases), they now focus on long-tail keywords (three to five-word phrases).

Short-tail keywords are more generic and attract more traffic than long-tail keywords, but they are less likely to convert prospects to clients or customers. Ideally, you will use both short-tail and long-tail keywords to engage prospects and move them through your sales funnel.

Use short-tail keywords to attract prospects early in their buyer’s journey and long-tailed keywords to engage prospects and convert them to clients.

How to Find Keywords on the Cheap

Most of my clients are solopreneurs and small business owners. Their marketing budgets range from limited to nonexistent, so I’m always on the lookout for free or low-cost tools that can save time and are easy to use. The tools listed below are client faves based on cost (free is good) and ease of use:

LinkedIn “Add Skills Tool”

Step 1: Brainstorm three or four terms that your ideal clients and customers could use to find you. For example, some of the words my clients use to find me are personal branding, LinkedIn trainer, and social media coach.

The LinkedIn “Add Skills Tool” is a fairly simple way to find keywords, and you don’t have to leave LinkedIn to use it.

To use the “Add Skills Tool,” scroll down to the “Skills and Endorsements” section of your profile. (It’s below Education.) Note that LinkedIn only displays your first three skills. Viewers have to click “Show more” to see the rest. The skills you choose to display should be the three that will be the most compelling to your target audience.

Access the tool, by clicking on “Add a new skill” to open the skills search box.

To identify keywords, enter a term in the search field. The search tool fills in skills associated with that term as you type. In the example below, I entered “LinkedIn” in the search field and the Add Skills tool pulled up a list of short tail keywords including LinkedIn Recruiter, LinkedIn Advertising and LinkedIn API.

You can use the “Add Skills Tool” to find both short tail and long tail keywords. In the example below, “Business,” Business Development” and “Business Strategy” are short tail keywords, while “Business Process Management” is a long tail keyword. I recommend that you use both in your profile by interweaving them where they occur naturally in the dialogue. (Avoid “keyword stuffing”. It makes your article choppy and difficult to read and will work against you in long-tail keyword searches.)

Bonus Tip

Endorsements are based on the skills you choose to display on your profile and are one of the most important means you have for establishing credibility. Use the LinkedIn “Add Skills Tool” to benchmark your skills sets against other small business owners in your industry. List up to 50 skills on your profile to receive endorsements from your 1st degree contacts.

Make it a practice to revisit your profile often to reevaluate and reorder your skills. This ensures that your most important skills are visible. To reorder your skills, click on the arrow to the far right of “Skills and Endorsements to open your list of skills. Rearrange them by dragging and dropping the three lines in the far-right column.

You’ll definitely want to use the LinkedIn “Add Skills Tool” for keyword research. I suggest combining it with a 3rd party tool, such as Answer the Public, Keyword Tool or Ubersuggest because when someone searches for your name, your LinkedIn profile will likely be among the first three items displayed. These tools identify keywords and phrases based on Google and Bing searches.

#linkedin #keywords #Linkedin profile #long-tailkeywords #dumontowen #dumont&associates

Answer the Public

Answer the Public is a search query data visualization tool that helps you understand the questions and phrases people seek regarding any given topic. It’s really helpful for semantic searches, because it helps you place the information in context.

It features “the Seeker”, a (kind of creepy) guy who is easily bored and prone to tantrums. If you can deal with him, you’ll get a good list of keywords.

To get started, enter a word or phrase in the search field and click, “Ask Questions,” The Seeker generates phrases grouped as questions and prepositions associated with that topic. In this example, I entered the phrase, “Social Selling”. The results are displayed visually around wheels or in alphabetical lists of questions and phrases.

I prefer the data version, which produces lists that can be downloaded into Excel or .csv files.

Keyword Tool

Keyword Tool offers a great free alternative to Google Keyword Planner and other keyword suggestion tools. The free version generates up to 750 long-tail suggestions for each term you enter. I find this tool to be extremely reliable and really easy to use. Just enter your search term to start. (Location and language are optional.) In the example below, I entered “content marketing”.

Note that you can select specific search engines such as Google, YouTube, Bing, Amazon, eBay and the App Store.

Like “Answer the Public,” Keyword Tool generates results as keyword suggestions and questions. This makes it helpful for researching keywords as well as producing relevant content for your target audience.


Ubersuggest in the past, take SEO Wizard Neil Patel has a user-friendly interface that makes it much faster and easier to find long-tail keywords. Because it pulls data from Google Keyword Planner and Google Suggest, the data is reliable.

Ubersuggest provides three important metrics for evaluating long-tail keywords.

  • Search Volume – the average search volume that keywords receive.
  • Cost Per Click (CPC) – the average fee that advertisers pay to cover using a keyword.
  • Competition –According to Ubersuggest, scores competitiveness from 0.0 to 1.0.

Using the right keywords on your LinkedIn profile and throughout your marketing campaigns is a key tactic for attracting and cultivating qualified prospects. Fortunately there are free tools that will help you identify client-attracting words even if you don’t’ have a premium account.

In this article I’ve covered four tools that my clients find useful for identifying keywords, but there are more. If you have a favorite, let me know in the comments below and I’ll include it in an update.

#linkedin #linkedinprofile #keywords #keywordresearch #free

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