I'm writing a book about LinkedIn, so statistics and trends related to its use have been piquing my interest lately. Recently, Lab42 conducted a survey of LinkedIn users to learn about how they use LinkedIn and how often they use it. The results are very enlightening.
LinkedIn has taken a backseat to Facebook in recent years, and more recently, buzz about Google+ has usurped even Facebook buzz. However, LinkedIn had a successful IPO earlier this year and is posting higher results than ever. Whether those results are artificially inflated thanks to the IPO buzz or not remains to be seen. What is for certain is that LinkedIn is making the bulk of its money through its enterprise Recruiting Solutions, LinkedIn Ads, and individual premium account subscriptions - in that order.
The company has actively been introducing new features with more promised in the near future. What was once viewed as a social networking site for people who needed to find new jobs is now a powerful social networking, hiring, promotional, and career development site. Most people with basic LinkedIn accounts don't even realize all the free tools and features that are available to them.
LinkedIn Usage by Career Level
With that said, the Lab42 results reported the following statistics related to LinkedIn member usage:
Overall, the top activities on LinkedIn are industry networking (61%), keeping in touch (61%), and co-worker networking (55%). As a social networking site for professionals, LinkedIn seems to be delivering on its brand promise.
LinkedIn Usage Frequency Rates
In terms of how frequently LinkedIn users log in and actively use the site, 2 out of 3 members use the site at least a few times per week or more. Specifically, 35% of users access LinkedIn daily and 32% access the site a few times per week. Another 16% log into LinkedIn a few times per month while 8% log in whenever they get an email from LinkedIn.
Compare that to the 2% of users who log in monthly or the 6% of users who access LinkedIn less than once per month, and it's clear that LinkedIn users are satisfied enough with the user experience that they actively return and want more. Just 1% of respondents to the Lab42 survey indicated that they never access LinkedIn. That's a rate that a site like Twitter would love to have!
The Future of LinkedIn
LinkedIn offers tools that professionals want and need, and that's why 90% of LinkedIn users in this study said they think the site is useful. It's that simple. As long as the site continues to deliver on its brand promise, members will continue to log in and use it. However, now that LinkedIn is a public company, there are high revenue goals to meet. Can LinkedIn survive those kinds of double-digit year-over-year growth demands that Wall Street requires? Only time will tell.
For me, LinkedIn is primarily a tool to stay current on trends and conversations related to my industry, build my brand reputation, network, develop relationships, and indirectly build my business. How do you use LinkedIn?