LinkedIn Connections

Last updated: April 25, 2017 - 8:51pm EDT

If you've set up a profile on LinkedIn and you're ready to start making use of it, the best way to start is by making connections. LinkedIn is, by all means, a social network, so if you join, you need to interact with the people you know by finding them and inviting them to connect with you. It is often said that business is as much about who you know as what you know, if not more so.  That's why it's important to have as many "connections" as possible on LinkedIn.

What are connections on LinkedIn, and how do I use them?

"Connections" are people on LinkedIn whom you personally know and trust. By "connecting" with them, you can see what they're up to on LinkedIn, send them messages, view and update (only for you) their personal contact information, find and connect with other users in your field, and more.

Connections work by invitation.  If you wish to connect with someone, you must send them an invitation. If they accept it, then each of you becomes a "connection" for the other. Other users can also send you connection invitations, which you can accept if you wish.

How to get more LinkedIn connections

  1. Go to www.linkedin.com in your web browser and log in.

  2. Move your mouse cursor over Connections in the menu across the top, and then click Add Connections.

    Add LinkedIn connections button

  3. One of the easiest ways to get more connections is by searching for people whom you already stay in contact with via email.

    Find LinkedIn connections through email

    Click to select the type of email service that you want to search for connections through, and then (if necessary) click in the box marked "Your Email" and type in your email address. Then click Continue.

    (NOTE: You will need to log into your email account, if you have not already done so, and allow LinkedIn to access parts of your email account)

  4. Once LinkedIn has search through your email contacts, it will come up with a list of them who are already using the website. Click the check box beside a person's name to select them (or click it again if it's marked to deselect them).  You can also click the check box beside "Select All" to select or deselect everyone in the list.  When you're done, click Add [X] Connections to send connection invites to the people whom you selected.

    Add LinkedIn connections from email

  5. You can also invite other people in your email contacts who aren't using LinkedIn to join and connect with you.

    Invite LinkedIn connections through email

    As before, click on the check box beside someone's name to select them (or click it if it's marked to deselect them).  You can also click the check box beside "Select All" to select or deselect everyone in the list.  Then click Add [X] Selected to Network to send them invites, or click Skip This Step if you'd rather not.

  6. If someone accepts your connection invitation, it will show up in your Notifications menu at the top of the screen.  Move your mouse cursor over the flag icon to have a look (if there is a red number on top of it, that tells you how many unseen notifications you have).

    LinkedIn connection notification

  7. You can also add more connections if someone else finds you and wants to connect with you.  Open the email from them and click Accept.

    Accepting LinkedIn connections through email

    Or, you can move your mouse cursor over the Connections icon () and click Connect beside people who have asked to connect with you (again, if it has a red number over it, that will tell you the number of new connection invites that you have).

    You can also find new people to add as connections by searching for them. If you want to learn about how to do this in detail, check out our tutorial on how to search LinkedIn.

How to remove connections on LinkedIn

  1. Assuming that you're still logged into LinkedIn, click Connections in the menu across the top.

    LinkedIn connections button

  2. In the top-right corner, click Remove Connections.

    LinkedIn remove connections button

  3. In the left-hand table, click the check boxes beside the people whom you want to remove from your connections list (click the letters on the far left to view connections whose last names start with that letter).  Then click Remove Connections on the right.

    Select LinkedIn connections to remove

That's a brief introduction to connections on LinkedIn: what they are, how to get them, and how to remove them if you no longer want them. Be sure to check out the next tutorial in our LinkedIn course where you can learn how to add skills and endorsements to your profile, because after you've added connections, you're going to want them all to be able to see what you can do!

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