LinkedIn Algorithm Frequently Asked Questions and Answers 2021

LinkedIn is arguably the world’s most used professional networking platform; a place where professionals from all works of life connect. It’s an open platform, to build professional networks. Despite the potentials of LinkedIn, you need to first understand how the LinkedIn algorithm works, in other to get the best experience on the platform.

This list will make you understand what works with the LinkedIn algorithm, and help you get the best results from the platform.

Before you dive into the LinkedIn algorithm frequently asked questions and answers, check out our previous post on LinkedIn introduction for beginners.

At the end of this post, there’s a list of resources for further reading.

1) WHAT IS THE LINKEDIN ALGORITHM?

The LinkedIn algorithm is the term used to describe the programming codes that LinkedIn uses to study activities, evaluate the relevance of posts, and give users the best product experience.

2) WHAT DOES THE LINKEDIN ALGORITHM DO?

The goal of the algorithm is to get relevant content, profiles, jobs, and courses; in front of the right audience. Every update on the LinkedIn algorithm will be made to fulfill that goal.

3) ANOTHER NAME FOR THE LINKEDIN ALGORITHM?

• LinkedIn Machine Learning
• LinkedIn Program

4) HOW DOES THE LINKEDIN ALGORITHM WORK?

The ULTIMATE task of the algorithm is to prioritize relevance for its users.

When you make a post on LinkedIn, the program runs a quality test on the content in the split seconds from when the post is made to when it’ll display on people’s timelines. The aim is to discover the best audience that’ll find your post relevant.

Post are measured against things such as;

  • Topic
  • Language used
  • Pages you follow
  • Your network’s interest
  • Hashtags used
  • People mentioned etc.

After the test, a quality score is assigned to the content. Based on the quality score of the content, LinkedIn will display it to a fraction of the best-fit audience for the post (social media expert, Greatman Adiele, suggests that this audience is just 2% of your total network).

LinkedIn uses the level of engagement the post gets, to determine if it should keep showing the post to more people or to stop showing it.

When people engage a post (like, comment, share, open), it passes a quality vote to the content which makes it appear on more timelines; and, ultimately helps the algorithm to continue showing the content to the best-fit audience, and at the same time search for more people that the content will be relevant to.

5) IS THERE A GRAPHIC REPRESENTATION OF HOW THE LINKEDIN ALGORITHM WORKS?

Yes, there’s a graphic representation of how the LinkedIn Algorithm works.

LinkedIn Algorithm Diagram (Source: Google)

6) IS LINKEDIN A SEARCH ENGINE?

The LinkedIn platform very well behaves like a search engine. However, while other search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo; return web pages, the LinkedIn search returns LinkedIn profiles.

7) WHAT DOES A LINKEDIN SEARCH RETURN?

  • Posts.
  • LinkedIn profiles.
  • Articles.
  • Company pages.
  • Job listings.
  • LinkedIn Groups.
LinkedIn Search Results

8) HOW DOES A POST GO VIRAL ON LINKEDIN?

Relevance trumps recency with the LinkedIn algorithm. If you can get the right engagements on your post within the first 30-60 minutes of making your post, it’ll help the algorithm push it to more people.


As more people engage in the post, it sends a message to the algorithm and editors that the post is relevant. That’ll make the editors promote your post by suggesting it to people in your niche. This gets more eyeballs to your post and perhaps more likes, comments, and/or shares.

Note: If you like or comment on a post, it’s as good as creating a post yourself. This is because your networks will be able to see the post you’ve just engaged with; then if your connections see it and engage it, it’ll also appear on their timeline for their networks to see. This process creates a loop that can keep the post running for as long as 3 months stretch.

LinkedIn

9) HOW DO I GET MORE ENGAGEMENTS?

  • Create rich and relevant content.
  • Use hashtags on your post.
  • Mention people to contribute to your post.
  • Keep your post interactive (for people to contribute).
  • Engage with your connections when they post.
  • Make out time to reply to anyone that comments on your post.
  • Grow your connection
Example of an Interactive Post

10) DO I NEED A LARGE CONNECTION FOR MY POST TO GO VIRAL?

The answer is yes and no.

Yes, large connections help a post go viral. No, that’s not all that determines if a post will go viral.

11) WHAT DO I NEED TO MAKE MY POST GO VIRAL?

What you need to make your post go viral is rich content written to the right audience, who identify it as something they need, then go ahead to engage it either through reaction, shares, or comments.

12) HOW TO BEAT LINKEDIN ALGORITHM

Many people try to use unhealthy means to beat the LinkedIn algorithm but fail in the end. LinkedIn usually identifies people who try to game their system and blocks them from the platform.

Therefore, whatever you do, try not to game the system. Read LinkedIn’s policy to see the dos and don’ts for users.

The best way to “beat the algorithm” is to create a close relationship with your connections; a kind of relationship that makes your connections know that you’re interested in them, and you value them.

How does all these concerns beating the LinkedIn algorithm?

Well, the rise and fall of any social network is how well it helps its members build and maintain their relationships.

Your mission on LinkedIn shouldn’t just be to get from people; to get engagements, to get links, to get jobs, to make sales, etc.; also think of how to give value, to attract what you want. Get familiar with your connections (especially if you’re interested in growing a network that its relevance will outlive your current needs). With this, you’ll create a fan base/followership which could pay off in terms of helping you achieve your goals now and in the future.

13) WHAT SHOULD I DO IF MY ACCOUNT IS RESTRICTED/BLOCKED?

Unpopular opinion: The first thing to do when LinkedIn restricts/blocks your account is to send an appeal. If you’re unable to recover the account after your appeal, then, create a new account with a different email. Pray, they don’t identify you again and ban your account.

Restricted LinkedIn Account:

14) WHY ARE MY LINKEDIN POSTS NOT GETTING VIEWS?

LinkedIn views are quite deceitful. You may assume that the number of views actually tells how many people saw your post but it’s not always the case. Focus more on getting engagements.

If a post performs poorly (get few likes, shares, or comments) in the first few minutes, the algorithm assumes that the content is not relevant to your audience and will stop showing it to people. More so, engagements on your post help it to appear in other people’s timeline (go through the section on “how a post goes viral” for more details)

Hence, the key is to get engagements and to get engagements, you have to post;

  1. When your connections are online (so you can get engagements with the first few minutes of making the post).
  2. Relevant Contents.
  3. With the right hashtags.
  4. Don’t stuff your posts with keywords. Little is more.

15) WHAT ARE THE BEST AND WORST TIMES TO POST ON LINKEDIN?

According to Impactplus, the safest times to post are Tuesday through Friday from 8 am- 2 pm.

While this is true to an extent, there are some reservations you should take into considerations;

• The best time to post on LinkedIn is highly dependent on your network. When is your network most active?
• Study people whose posts gain visibility in your niche, study the hours they make their post, and replicate. Always model what works.
• Most activities on LinkedIn happen during works hours (8 am-4 pm) in the week (Monday-Friday). Hence, your best time will fall into the hours when people would have time to take a break, and share/respond to posts on their darling LinkedIn.

16) HOW OFTEN SHOULD I POST A DAY?

Social media expert, Andy Foote, suggested in his article on LinkedIn Algorithm that over-sharing can ding your reach; so, unless you’re an influencer or celebrity, making more than 2 posts a day could affect the visibility of your posts.

17) CAN YOU OVERPOST ON LINKEDIN?

Rather than post multiple times, take the opportunity to engage in other people’s posts.

Imagine this scenario;

You plan to make three posts, you made the first post by 10 am, made the second by 1:30 pm, and you plan to post the third one by 4:30 pm. Assuming your second post for the day didn’t do so well, it’ll affect the performance of the third post.

Furthermore, if you keep getting content that performs poorly, the LinkedIn algorithm will limit the reach of your content; because they want to ensure their users are getting the best content to curate.

18) WHY CAN’T I SEE MOST RECENT POST FIRST?

Your account is by default set to show top (posts with more engagements) post first. You can however change it to see the most recent post.

Note: When you leave the app, it’ll go back to the default setting of showing top posts first.

LinkedIn
LinkedIn Post Views

19) WHAT IS CONSIDERED A VIRAL POST ON LINKEDIN?

Though different experts have their views about a viral post, my experience and research show that a viral post is a post that has been classified as a trending post by LinkedIn editors.

Your post can trend (viral) amongst people in the #contentwriting niche, but not trend in the #career niche. Therefore, when your post can generate enough engagements anywhere from 100 (likes, comments, shares, etc), LinkedIn editors could classify your post as a “trending post”; and once it’s tagged as a trending post, LinkedIn editors will send a message to people in your niche to inform them that your post is trending for a particular topic. This will cause more people to click, and see what the post is about.

There are cases when your content generates less than 100 engagements and the Editors feel it’s worth trending, hence they push it out for your close connections to see. Hence, if you’re a regular user, your post can start trending with 50 engagements and above.

Another level of viral post is common for influencers, public figures, and big companies, that their posts receive anything from 1000 engagements and above.

LinkedIn Viral Post By a Top Brand
Trending Post Suggestion
LinkedIn Trending Post Suggestion
LinkedIn Post Suggestion

20) HOW DOES LINKEDIN ALGORITHM MATCH PEOPLE TO JOBS?

LinkedIn uses the details of your profile (experience, skills, certifications, headline, about) to match you.

When you go to the LinkedIn jobs section to search for a job, LinkedIn pulls information from your profile, especially your skills, certification, and past job title, to match you.

21) HOW IMPORTANT IS WRITING FOR ‘MY TRIBE’?

According to LinkedIn’s Senior Director of Product Management, the mantra of the feed, is, people you know talking about the things you care about.

From that statement by Pete Davies, it’s clear that LinkedIn appreciates people who can create content, directed to people they know a.k.a “Tribe”.

22) DO ALL OF MY FOLLOWERS GET NOTIFIED WHEN I POST?

No. Your connections don’t get notified when you make a post. However, they can get notified to view your post when it’s trending.

CONCLUSION

There are numerous potentials with the LinkedIn platform. This LinkedIn Algorithm frequently asked questions and answers, was presented to help find answers to the questions that are holding a lot of people back, from achieving the results they deserve on LinkedIn.

If you have any comments or questions, please drop them in the comment section. Thanks for reading.

RESOURCES/REFERENCES

Leave your thoughts