Wouldn’t it be great if LinkedIn had a particular way to advertise your top skills so they are easily noticed? That is precisely what they have done. A new SEO feature that LinkedIn recently added is called “Top Skills.” This will sit right under your “About” section in the profile.
This new feature allows you to highlight your top five skills. Whether you’re a job hunter or a professional wanting to enhance your profile, this new option is a valuable function. Once listed, it is easier for search engines and recruiters to uncover job candidates with a specific skill. Or, if an employer says they need a candidate to have a particular skill like product development, a recruiter can add this item into the search parameter. Optimizing your profile with these important keywords improves your chance of capturing attention.
Now, if you race to add your five skills, you will be surprised it’s not there. Don’t be confused; it is not the “Skills” section at the end of your profile. The top skills box is invisible if you haven’t set up this function. To add it, open your “About” section and hit “edit.” At the bottom, you’ll see a tab that says, “Add Top Skills.” Click on that. Identify your top five from the drop-down menu. Not every possible skill you can think of is available, but many skills are. You must select from those.
Here is a quick trick. Go to the bottom of your profile to see what skills you noted there. Pick out your top five. Don’t worry that the skills will be in there twice. These top ones take prominence, so be sure you select the best ones that describe your abilities.
Or you can search for a job opening with your job title. Read that and look for the critical skills the employer wants. That will enable you to uncover some critical skills you might have missed while listing yours on your own.
Here are two examples that I created for my career counseling clients when I was writing their LinkedIn profiles.
Do some self-assessment. LinkedIn defined hard skills as competencies and measurable abilities. Forage, an educational organization, defines soft skills as non-technical skills that describe how you work and interact with others. There are many more hard skills than soft ones. As you search for the ones you think represent your best abilities or personality traits, you can’t make up any that aren’t found in the drop-down menu.
Here is a list of some of the more sought-after skills employers seek. Many may not relate to your type of job. So, only use the appropriate ones. Consider blending soft skills and hard skills into your five selections. Here are some examples:
You want to demonstrate to the world precisely what you’re best at. These skills help support that objective. Take advantage of this new way to stand out. Whether you are a job hunter or want to enhance your personal brand, adding these keywords to the “Top Skills” section of your LinkedIn profile will only take a few minutes.
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