A Telling “Who Viewed Your Profile” Statistic

I have a premium LinkedIn account, so I get some expanded WVYP statistics. A lot of them are of questionable value, but some of these statistics are interesting. Here are two from a recent look at my own profile viewers:

Number of times in the past 90 days….

  • that someone has found me through LinkedIn Search: 15
  • that someone has found me from their Homepage: 186

Here is a chart with people who viewed my profile in the last four weeks. After several months off, I started publishing updates and articles again on LinkedIn on January 22nd.

My profile views more than tripled in two weeks.

Here’s another way of looking at it: Twelve times as many people are “finding” me through my active personna (posting, publishing and participating) on LinkedIn as through my passive personna (my profile).

People come and view my profile, but for the most part after I have done something that prompts them to.



Where Your LinkedIn Profile Viewers Come From – You Might Be Surprised

Interesting insights can be found in the oddest places on LinkedIn

Who Viewed Your Profile remains one of the favorite features on LinkedIn. Yet did you ever stop to check out how these people came to view your profile in the first place? I did and was surprised at what I found.

I have a premium LinkedIn account, an old grandfathered (ie: relatively cheap) Sales Navigator subscription. I look at who viewed my profile every day. People who view your profile are potential connections. Potential customers. Potential suppliers. Potential partners. Potential employers. If there is someone interesting in there that I don’t know or haven’t contacted under another pretext, I will do so.

LinkedIn provides some statistics in my Who Viewed Your Profile screen. A slider across the top of the page shows companies that my viewers come from, and the most common titles they have, along with how they found you on LinkedIn.

From day to day these results don’t change much. If I had more viewers from Accenture than anywhere else between Nov 1 and Jan 29, sliding that 90 day window one day to Nov 2 to Jan 30 isn’t going to change that much. But the other day I noticed that that the last entry, the “how they found you” one had changed…and indeed changed almost every day. So I started tracking it to see what it said about people finding me.

LinkedIn says the “how they found me” feature is available on free LinkedIn as well.

Here’s a screen capture:

Over the course of a couple of weeks, a bunch of different ways people had found me showed up. LinkedIn informed me that my profile viewers were finding me via:

Homepage 47% (of all my profile viewers)

Messaging 5%

My network 3%

LinkedIn search 2%

People similar to you 1%

Company pages less than 1%

(These percentages add up to less than 60%, as LinkedIn admits that they can’t figure out where some people are coming from.)

So what do these statistics tell me? Two things.

Appearing in lots of LinkedIn Search Results doesn’t mean very much

In a recent 90 day period, only 16 people who looked at my profile came there via LinkedIn Search. That’s just over one a week.

But in the separate “Search Appearances” feature on my profile, LinkedIn tells me that I am appearing in hundreds of search results every week. Here is what LinkedIn told me for last week.

So I may be in the search results in hundreds of searches every week, but almost none of those searchers are actually coming to look at my profile.

So appearing in search results doesn’t lead to many profile views. What does?

Activity on LinkedIn leads to profile views. Lots of profile views

A lot of people see me on their homepage and then go look at my profile. In the screen cap at the beginning of this article 373 people found me coming from their homepage versus the 16 that found me via search.

My home page drives 23 times more people to my profile than LinkedIn search (47% of all profile views versus…2%).

Publishing, sharing, commenting, liking or getting mentioned results in profile views. Many many more profile views than people finding me via search.

When I looked at those people who had found me through their homepage, I found 70% of them were second and third degree connections. People I don’t know are finding me on LinkedIn because I am active on LinkedIn. They are not finding me through LinkedIn search, they are finding me because of my activity on LinkedIn.

I suggest you go check out your own “People found you via” statistics and see what they say about you.

Are More People Viewing LinkedIn Profiles Anonymously?

a profile viewThere are an awful lot more of these people than I thought. Is this a trend?

People viewing your profile in “private” mode (the nicer name that replaced the old “anonymous” mode) are a fact of life on LinkedIn. Designed for recruiters and Human Resources people – the ones that fund LinkedIn – private mode allows them to do their jobs more efficiently. And I can see that – an HR person may scroll through a couple hundred LinkedIn profiles, quickly rejecting most of them. The last thing he or she needs is forty of those people bugging him about why he looked at their profile.

Last week I had a look at my own Who Viewed Your Profile statistics. I have a premium subscription so I can see who viewed my profile going back ninety days. Linkedin now seems to clump your private mode viewers into one weekly number (like my screen capture above). This made it easy (albeit with a lot of scrolling) to add up my private viewers for each of the last 13 weeks and see what percentage of my profile visitors do so in private mode.  

The answer was 43%.

Now, I am a pretty active LinkedIn user, so I get a lot of profile views. But this amounted to around 800 private profile views in three months. 800! Almost ten people every day.

As a self employed consultant, I am pretty sure I was not checked out by 800 recruiters this past quarter (actually, I can tell the number of recruiters who viewed my profile in private mode had to be less than 135 over that time period. The math is a little arcane so I have left it out. Anyone who is that nerdy can contact me and I will explain it).

Then around the same time I was making this discovery , I came across this post  by Allen Quinn, “5 Reasons Millennials Aren’t Using LinkedIn”  In his post, Allen maintains that millennials don’t like the idea that people can tell when a millennial has viewed their profile. After trading messages Allen freely admits his evidence is anecdotal, but it is an interesting idea, and does seem plausible. After all, the millennial crowd is used to the anonymity of Facebook and Twitter where no one knows you visited their profile.

So that leaves the question: Is this a trend on LinkedIn? More and more people viewing profiles anonymously? If so, is it a good one, being like other social networks, or a bad one, where we can’t see who has viewed our profiles?