And how they differ from the computer platform.
I don’t think LinkedIn’s computer (laptop/desktop) platform will disappear anytime soon, but I’m convinced that within five or so years the majority of us will be using our smart phone app more. At present, the app is used by more than 50% of LinkedIn members.
Further, a poll conducted on LinkedIn reveals that 65% of the voters (1,697) use the LinkedIn mobile app more than the computer platform. This is an overwhelming amount of people who choose the app over the computer.
With this in mind, I wonder how different LinkedIn appears on the two devices. Is the smart phone app all that different from the computer platform? There are some obvious differences, but are they too large to prevent the computer platform from becoming obsolete?
Let’s look at five major areas of the mobile app and how they compare to the computer.
The Snapshot area of your mobile app (that which sits at the top of your profile) is almost identical to your computer’s platform. There are some aesthetic differences between the two.
The first obvious difference is the background picture is smaller on the mobile app. You must take this into consideration if you have words on your picture, as they might be covered by your head-shot.
The example above is an excellent example of how Brenda Meller’s head-shot doesn’t cover any of her words.
The user’s head-shot on the mobile app is actually in good shape; in some cases better than the computer. I notice more clarity when comparing my headshot on the app and the computer.
Another small difference is that the computer provides live links for your current/past employer as well as your most recent education, allowing you to click on either to bring you to them.
A more significant difference is that LinkedIn has increased the headline character count to 200+ characters, but you can’t make edits on the mobile app; you are still limited to the former 120 characters.
LinkedIn increased the number of words one can initially see in the apps About section to approximately 23. Previously approximately 10 words were visible. Nonetheless, you need to demonstrate your value within the the few number of words you’re granted.
The example of the first three lines on the mobile app About section starts strong, but the second sentence is cut off, failing to show the LinkedIn member’s further value.
It is prudent to write briefer sentences (three or four lines at most) so they don’t appear so dense on the mobile app.
Your computer’s About section displays approximately 50 words. Which isn’t a great improvement over the mobile app, but it allows you to be less stingy with your words.
You are now able to utilize 2,600 characters with the mobile app and desktop. So your kick-ass Summary can be expanded. It will just take some scrolling for visitors to see it in its entirety.
I suggest you include some compelling accomplishments within the About section to immediately show the value you’ll deliver to employers. Notice how dense the mobile app accomplishments appear vs. the computer view. Again, try to keep your paragraphs as brief as possible.
Mobile app view
Computer platform view
On the mobile app all your positions under Experience must be expanded. This requires a two-click process in order to access all jobs.
If visitors are unaware of this, they may miss your job descriptions; thinking you only listed your title, place of employment, and years of employment.
Therefore, it’s advisable to list as many areas of expertise next to your title as possible. This will give visitors a better understanding of not only your official title, but also additional value you provide/d your company or organization.
In contrast, the computer shows a partial view of a person’s position. All one needs to do is click …see more to get the expanded view. (Previously LinkedIn showed the fully expanded view of a person’s position.)
Again, it is important to write brief paragraphs so your Experience verbiage is easy to read on the mobile app…and the computer platform for that matter.
It’s essential to include compelling accomplishments for each position once again to show the value you’ll deliver to employers. Notice how dense the mobile app accomplishments appear vs. the computer view. Again, try to keep your paragraphs as brief as possible.
4. The Rest
Education on the mobile app provides the same information as the computer, but like the Experience section you must click multiple times to open the full view of an education and volunteer description. Given the limited size of the mobile app, this is understandable.
Provide as much information about your time at university as possible. Madeline Mann takes advantage of the ability to include more information in the Education section than most LinkedIn users do.
Featured Skills & Endorsements on the mobile app is relatively the same as the computer. You have the ability to arrange yours skills however you’d like. Only the top three are visible, as with the computer.
Recommendations reveal only one person, whereas the computer application reveals two. No huge difference here.
Accomplishments was the worst decision LinkedIn made, other than anchoring all the sections on the mobile app and computer. Within Accomplishments are some features that could (and were) be sections in themselves. Such as:
- Honors and Awards
- Test Scores
5. Editing Capabilities
Editing your profile on the mobile app is limited, of course. Unless you’re a master of copying and pasting text from a Word app to your LinkedIn app, making major changes to existing text on your profile would be better done on your computer.
This post wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t mention some strengths of the mobile app, such as being able to share your profile with someone at a live event. I found this useful at one event where instead of exchanging business cards, I scanned a networker’s QR code.
For the most part, the mobile app provides the same functionality as the computer, but in a smaller version. It’s mobility makes it easy for visitors to see your profile when away from their computer. Which is what they may prefer doing.
If you want to learn more about LinkedIn, visit this compilation of LinkedIn posts.