Ranking Higher in LinkedIn Search

Have you ever been on LinkedIn and wondered why you are not ranking higher in searches? Low rankings are incredibly frustrating when you have filled out your profile in hopes of making more connections. LinkedIn is a valuable social networking platform for business professionals that helps users find jobs, develop their careers, and connect with other professionals. To do well on LinkedIn and show up in searches, you must rank well. The way your profile appears in searches depends on your relationship with the user who searches for you. LinkedIn expresses these relationships as degrees. There are 1st degree, 2nd degree, and 3rd-degree connections on LinkedIn. This article will explain how to rank higher in LinkedIn search results and the benefits of ranking higher. 

ranking higher in linkedin searches

What Is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is a professional social networking site that aims to connect users, help foster career development, and find jobs. It was created in 2003 as the go-to social media network for professionals and the business community. This platform works similarly to Facebook, except, instead of being about your personal life, it revolves around your professional one. You can grow your contact list, expand your network, post professional updates, apply for jobs, and post job openings on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn is a valuable social networking platform that helps you connect with other professionals and develop your career. It allows you to keep in touch with current and past colleagues, fosters connections, and promotes new opportunities. LinkedIn lets you create a custom profile that includes your city, current position, previous jobs, a profile picture, and a bio. You can also post professional updates similar to status updates on Facebook with which other people can interact.

What Does 1st, 2nd, 3rd Mean on LinkedIn?

These numbers denote your relationship with another user on LinkedIn and influence your appearance in someone’s searches. The three main degrees of connections are 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. These numbers will show up next to a user’s name or profile.

1st-Degree Connections on LinkedIn

You can message 1st-degree connections on LinkedIn. A 1st-degree connection means that you and another user connect by accepting a request. Either you have accepted their request, or they have accepted yours. First-degree connections are the closest relationships a LinkedIn user can have with someone else. These connections are ranked highest on searches because LinkedIn categorizes them as more relevant.

2nd-Degree Connections on LinkedIn

Second-degree connections are people connected to your 1st-degree connections. You could compare them to a mutual friend on Facebook. You can contact 2nd-degree connections through either an In-Mail message or an introduction.

3rd-Degree Connections on LinkedIn

Third-degree connections are the most distant of these distinctions. They are people related to your 2nd-degree connections. You can contact these 3rd-degree connections through In-Mail or an introduction, just like 2nd-degree connections.

Out-of-Network Members

The last category of connections is those with which you have no connection. They are called out-of-network members. The only way to contact these members are In-Mail messages. Make sure you are not ignoring LinkedIn connection requests! Your relationships with other users are meaningful because they influence how you communicate and see them on LinkedIn.

what does 1st 2nd 3rd mean on linkedin

How to Rank Higher in LinkedIn Search

It helps the appearance of your LinkedIn profile to have a well-crafted and curated page complete with a professional profile picture and a cohesive bio. However, it is not the be-all-end-all to rank higher in LinkedIn searches. The primary way to rank higher is to increase the number of your connections. LinkedIn is about connecting with other professionals, so it prioritizes search results. We also have some other tips to bolster your profile in search results, like being an active member of the LinkedIn community.

Add More Connections

Adding connections is the key to showing up and ranking higher in LinkedIn Searches because it expands your network. The more connections you have, the better off you will be on LinkedIn because the most crucial factor when searching for users is how they relate to the person searching. If you have more connections, then there is a higher chance that others will see your profile when they search. An extensive network can help you foster your career, take advantage of new opportunities, reach potential employers, and reach new customers.

For example, let’s say you need help making some Excel spreadsheets for a project you are working on. When you enter Excel into the search box when looking for someone to assist you with this task, LinkedIn will show you your 1st-degree connections that have these qualifications. After 1st-degree connections that match your search query, LinkedIn will display 2nd-degree connections and then 3rd-degree connections.

Finally, after LinkedIn shows all your other connections, it displays those not connected to you. Having more connections is essential because of how LinkedIn ranks those you are connected with versus those you are not. In the help section, LinkedIn even says that having more connections, specifically closer connections, will help you rank higher. 

ranking higher in linkedin searches

Utilize Keywords

Keywords on LinkedIn are essential because keywords are how people will find you. Incorporate relevant keywords on your profile so you pop up in searches. You will want to put keywords in multiple places on your profile and in the right spot. Since keywords are one-way, people will find your profile and help you rank higher, make sure that you are using effective keywords relevant to your skills and experience. If you have the connection but not the right keywords, people won’t contact you if you do not match what someone is looking for. 

Join Groups and Be Involved

A group is a great way to build your network because it allows you to reach people you want to contact and those with which you share common interests. In these groups, you can make posts in your field of expertise that are valuable, so others connect with you. The maximum number of groups a user can join is 50, allowing you to make many connections. For these groups to be helpful, you need to be interactive by contributing, commenting, and liking other users’ posts. These interactions can help your profile rank higher because of your activity and the increased connections. 

Post Individual Status Updates Often

Users who post status updates regularly get their profiles seen more than those who do not. Status updates show others that you are an active account involved in your professional development. The more updates you post, the more interaction potential to appear in other users’ feeds. Once again, this can help expand your network and help your profile rank better. You can post updates about a new job you are excited about, a work project you have completed, or something about your industry. Here are some examples of the best type of content for LinkedIn. The regular updates are mostly about keeping your profile active and expanding your network. 

linkedin search appearances

Complete Your Profile

You are working on your connections, have joined relevant groups, and are posting regular status updates. For your profile to rank higher, you need to complete your profile, so it looks like you are an active user. Compared to a profile with gaps, a profile with every section completed will rank higher than the former. The good news is that filling out your profile is relatively simple because all the information is about yourself. Make sure to fill out your educational background, profile picture, current position, previous jobs, and a personalized summary. It is always good to fill everything out because it shows thoughtfulness and attention to detail, which are traits professional connections want. 

Publish on LinkedIn

If you have writing experience and are an expert in your field, share your blog posts on LinkedIn. Publishing on LinkedIn is a great way to boost your profile and share your knowledge with the community. It provides credibility, trustworthiness, and professionalism so that other users want to connect with you. It can also improve your reputation so that other people want to network with you and seek you out.

Publishing on LinkedIn exposes your profile to people who might not have stumbled across you otherwise. It increases the potential that your posts and profile will be shown to even more people. If you have writing skills and professional expertise, then publishing on LinkedIn can do nothing but help you get your name out there. The connections brought about by this will help your profile rank higher in LinkedIn search appearances. 

how to rank higher in linkedin search


  • Who is LinkedIn meant for?
  • Why are connections on LinkedIn meaningful?
  • What are keywords on LinkedIn?
  • What types of connections are there on LinkedIn?
  • How do I rank higher on LinkedIn?

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