If you ask yourself if this guide can help you to level up your SSI game, check out the topics we'll cover!
You learn what the social selling index is and how you benefit from using it
You will see exactly how you can optimize your score, therefor improve your personal brand
There is not much competition in this field. However, there is one tool you can use to identify optimization potentials
My personal opinion if the social selling index is good enough to be used as your "go-to" dashboard
This article is all about LinkedIn's famous social selling index. If you watch your feed from time to time, you'll certainly see posts about the SSI.
In my experience, these posts come from either the people who claim to have achieved a high score on LI's SSI or others who don't understand the score at all.
I have to admit: when I first saw the score I was confused. Then, I rolled up my sleeves and dug into the research.
The thing is, your LinkedIn account performance can skyrocket if you constantly have access to the right data. If you can measure your LinkedIn profile's effectiveness and your content's value to your audience, you can find success on LinkedIn sooner than you anticipated!
With LinkedIn’s SSI (Social Selling Index), which helps you measure various metrics of your LinkedIn account and take the right action to grow.
And in this article, I'll help you understand what the Social Selling Index is (and how you can benefit from using it).
Note: This article aims to provide a practical guide for using the LinkedIn SSI effectively for content and profile optimization efforts. But if you're here to look for a tool to monitor your LinkedIn success, you might want to check out our LinkedIn Analytics Dashboard → it's 100% free to get started.
The Social Selling Index is a tool from LinkedIn to make your own activities on the platform measurable. The dashboard shows how strong your personal brand on LinkedIn is in terms of your interactions, your engagement on the platform, and the quality of your connections.
With the score, LinkedIn tries to evaluate how likely it is for you to succeed with your social selling efforts. A higher score means a higher likelihood of success.
The tool is the preliminary stage to the LinkedIn Sales Navigator and is linked within the tool.
LinkedIn SSI (Social Selling Index) is updated daily, so your score can fluctuate based on your activity and engagement on the platform.
Your SSI score is calculated based on four factors:
These factors are weighted differently, and establishing your professional brand is the most heavily weighted.
The Social Selling Dashboard is divided into 4 main categories: building your personal brand, finding the right people, engaging with insights, and building meaningful relationships.
Other than that, there is an attempt to benchmark you with other people in your industry. This is done by the algorithm assigning you to an industry that the platform thinks best suits you and then compare your score with others in the industry and your network.
The 4 pillars of the SSI are the heart of the Social Selling Index (the new version has only 3 pillars).
A strong personal brand invites engagement, sales, and interesting connections, but it takes time to build one.
Your LinkedIn SSI score helps you understand how strong your personal brand is. For example, if you have a well-optimized LinkedIn profile with a professional photo, headline, and summary, you'll likely score well in the "establishing your professional brand" category.
Do not leave your profile blank without a profile picture—make a conscious effort to make it easy for your profile visitors to learn a bit about you. Learn from similar profiles in your industry. (Recommended reading: LinkedIn profile examples.)
What does that mean? Finding the right people? LinkedIn wants you to connect with people that are likely to benefit from your activities and offers. That's why you should always aim to offer value first when joining a conversation or any other exchange.
This metric is influenced by several triggers. These include, for example, interacting with and commenting on the contributions of other people. Sharing your own posts also has a positive effect on your score.
LinkedIn Connection Message Example:
Saw your latest post about effective LinkedIn Marketing. Appreciate the work you put in there to summarize all your learnings!
I also saw on your profile that you work on [PROJECT]. Are you still active there? Anyways, would love to connect.
In this example, you’re appreciating the other person’s efforts while showing interest in their work. It also asks a question that increases the probability of getting a reply.
Building relationships with others is a key strategy to use the platform to its full potential. LinkedIn even assists you in finding relevant connections within your industry by introducing you to 2nd and 3rd-level connections. It also shows you the content your 1st-level connections are engaging with, which helps you find interesting people on the platform.
Found an interesting post from your 2nd-level connection while scrolling through your feed? Leave a nice comment on their post and send them a personalized connection request to add them to your network.
LinkedIn Follow-Up Message Example:
Found this marketing gem on YouTube, thought you'd like it. The guy from Epic Light Media always points out interesting channels he’d like to get attention from by the end of each video:
Example 1: **https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbg9OsbJCqs (**14:30)
He makes it funny and entertaining and goes against the expectations of the audience by explicitly mentioning that -no- one should subscribe or like.
Instead, he recommends subscribing to other channels. I think it's great because of:
1. How he makes himself stand out by doing so.
2. How he gets attention from people recognizing his mentions (and telling people to comment on their channels).
Why this works: You’re providing value through your message while also letting the other person know that you remember them and care about their interests.
Inlytics offers you a comprehensive LinkedIn Analytics Dashboard to improve content performance.
Sign up now and start for free.
Straightforward: in the middle of your dashboard, navigate to the "Weekly social selling index." You'll find a line chart visualization of the past 7 weeks (49 days). This index tracks your previous efforts. You can see at one glance how your score changed over time.
Usually, the more active you are, the higher will your score be. But keep in mind that I've never experienced a sudden rise of more than a few percentage points in one week.
Even when I had an extremely active phase during that time. That's also what I heard from colleagues and friends who use the SSI to their advantage.
With LinkedIn's Social Selling Index you can see how well you compare to people in your network and industry. LinkedIn automatically categorizes you into one industry and compares you with others.
Some people get the wrong or inaccurate industry. You might try modifying the current position in your profile to change that.
Here is my example above! I'm just slightly above the SSI of my peers but still have a lot of room for improvement (I'm a lazy sloth). You could argue that I'm just a little more active/optimized than most people in my personal network. You also might notice that you are able to check the different colored chart-pieces, seeing where your peers are better or worst than you.
In my example right here, the Marketing and Advertising industry is pretty low on average when it comes to SSI. For me personally, this is interesting but rather unhelpful in figuring out how to improve.
What would help is seeing what others do, what helps them get a higher score, AKA build better relationships on LinkedIn.
Quite honestly: I don't use LinkedIn's SSI benchmarking part that much. Benchmarking is interesting to see how I compare to others, but it does not directly help me improve.
Howeveer, it can be helpful to check out the specific aspects where your peers are better than you. You might find something useful!
I'd say for active LinkedIn users a score from 0-30 is below average (not so good), 31-50 is ordinary, 51-70 is above average and everything over 70 is pretty solid.
Some people manage to get 90+. I'd assume their profiles are extremely well-optimized, and they probably use Sales Navigator a whole lot.
Did I mention an alternative?
We built a tool that helps you improve content performance by providing you with actionable insights about your LinkedIn profile.
We do that with a variety of product features, including:
And many, many more!
With that said, let's look at the SSI alternative. We provide a comprehensive (free) checklist that gives you many ideas on how to optimize your LinkedIn profile. You find it in your Inlytics dashboard under "Profile."
Curious about other things Inlytics can do for you? Check out the full walkthrough!
You guessed it: It depends on your needs. I know, I know, I know... this is not what you want to hear. But speaking out of my own experience, many people - including me - do not get many helpful insights out of the SSI.
There are interesting facts like, where I have opportunities to optimize my profile (the four/ three pillars) but after all the SSI dashboard lacks quite some actionable advice in my opinion.
That does not mean others are not motivated by using it and start improving based on the insights they get? Of course not. Its just not.. for everyone!
To make a bottom line I try to don't make a too generic conclusion. I will put it this way:
Putting time & energy in optimizing the SSI MAY be a fit for you if:
✅You are willing to invest time to figure out how to improve based on the metrics you see
✅You're not demoralized when results don't happen overnight
✅Seeing stat's rise does give you a push and motivate you to further invest in the platform
The SSI IS NOT a fit for you if:
❌You expect to get immediate results from just optimizing a few things
❌You value actionable insights more than "just" stats and figures
At the end of the day, be clear about your expectations. You may find SSI to be just the thing -- or you might keep looking to find innovative ways to change your LinkedIn game.
I answer the questions that you may still have
There are many ways to improve your score with a little work. In the above mentioned examples under "How To Use The Social Selling Dashboard" I give you some ideas what you can do.
Either you type in "https://www.linkedin.com/sales/ssi" directly in your browser or you can find the dashboard in your sales navigator dashboard under "Admin" "User Reporting".
Essentially, the SSI tells you how well optimized your profile is in terms of your personal brand/visibility. It depends on how important these attributes are to you. One thing is clear: The Social Selling Index is only an attempt to measure your activities on LinkedIn and to show you potential areas for improvement. In my opinion, the score is particularly suitable for this.
LinkedIn provides you with a variety of different measurement tools. If you are interested in learning more about that topic, I've written a complete guide for how to use the LinkedIn dashboard. Check it out, it's worth it.
LinkedIns social selling index is updated once a day - every 24 hours.
LinkedIn's social selling index is based on a scale of 0 to 100 and calculated using your activities on LinkedIn. There is no clear indication from within LinkedIn how exactly the score is calculated and which action influences certain parts of the score the most. In any way, I do not think it's important to focus on how to improve the score, rather see the score as an indication where you can better up.