LinkedIn X-Ray Searches: 3 Free Tools To Find Your Audience
As of February 2022, LinkedIn can claim a global membership of 810 million members with over 57 million companies and 120 thousand schools. That is a large number of potential contacts. It may seem like an insurmountable task to use LinkedIn to find your desired audience without getting buried in hundreds of worthless search results. But there is a way to find your audience with only a little bit of work.
You can use x-ray searches on LinkedIn to find relevant profiles and put you in contact with people faster. First, let’s establish an understanding of what an x-ray search on LinkedIn is and how to use them. Then we can look at some free tools that will maximize the effectiveness of your LinkedIn x-ray searches.
What Is a LinkedIn X-Ray Search and Why Is It Useful?
First, an x-ray search is a type of boolean search that uses a search engine and the operator, ‘site:’ to do a focused search on a website such as LinkedIn. You utilize search operators in a specific format to narrow down your searches and locate only the most valuable prospective audience.
An x-ray search can be a powerful tool because it will search across a person’s entire profile for the keywords you use. This is better than a basic search because, if information such as skills, location, or title are scattered throughout their profile, a keyword search in LinkedIn’s native search bar is not optimized to find all the keywords and connect them.
Additionally an x-ray search does not rely on degrees of connection like LinkedIn’s native search engine. You will effectively circumvent the system of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd-degree connections that would be active if you were searching while logged into your own LinkedIn profile.
Finally, x-ray searches do not count against LinkedIn’s limit on free profile views. And since roughly 85% of LinkedIn profiles are public, an x-ray search allows you to reach out to almost anybody on LinkedIn.
How to Use X-Ray Searches on LinkedIn
When you learn how to do x-ray searches for LinkedIn, the possibilities of what you can search for are practically limitless. But first, it is necessary to understand how to do an x-ray search before trying more specific, more advanced searches. For this example, we’ll build a search as if we are interested in speaking to doctors in the Atlanta, GA area who specializes in pediatric medicine:
- Using a search engine, we start by typing the “site:” operator to focus our search on LinkedIn. We also need to use the “pub” or “in” elements to point the search towards LinkedIn’s public profiles.
- Then, we want to add our first keyword. We can also use double quotation marks, which are a boolean operator, to let the search engine know that a specific series of words is required in that order.
- The next step is adding another boolean operator such as NOT, OR, or AND. These operators, typed in all uppercase, let the search engine know-how the keywords relate to each other.
- The final step is to add additional keywords to narrow our search. Remember, we can add boolean operators to help refine the search results. Take a look at our x-ray search using the scenario we outlined above:
- site:LinkedIn.com/in/ “Atlanta area” AND “Pediatric Doctor” OR Pediatrician
The keywords and boolean operators you use can easily be adjusted to widen, narrow, or change your search results. Try using categories like company, location, and job role to customize your x-ray searches.
3 Free Search Tools for LinkedIn X-Ray Searches
While it can be valuable to understand how to conduct a basic x-ray search, you may not wish to take the time to learn all the boolean syntax and operators. You might also feel that it takes too much effort to type out all your searches in a search engine. Let’s take a look at a few free tools that take a lot of the work out of conducting x-ray searches.
This free x-ray search tool is one of the most popular options for salespeople and recruiters when they’re trying to find new contacts. The site is an ongoing project originally developed in London, UK. Currently, it focuses primarily on the United States and the United Kingdom.
The website, recruitmentgeek.com, offers a clean design and is easy to navigate. This tool is used by big-name companies such as Google and Amazon. It is highly recommended by recruiting and sales industry experts.
The site provides a completely free LinkedIn x-ray search bar that primarily focuses on utilizing skill and location keywords to find relevant LinkedIn profiles. The search bar on Recruitment Geek is also programmed so that you can use boolean operators to customize your search as much as you want. When you conduct an x-ray search, you can filter the results by either relevance or date.
While the LinkedIn x-ray search tool is available for free on Recruitment Geek, it is not the only tool available. The website does offer a few other tools when you sign up to support Recruitment Geek through a Patreon membership. A membership gives you access to x-ray search tools for other sites such as Twitter. It also gives you access to a more advanced LinkedIn x-ray search tool that is specific to different country locations (US and UK locations).
This tool provides a simple website with many different options and a powerful LinkedIn x-ray search tool that will help you narrow down your searches and find your audience with ease.
The website provides an easy-to-use search bar that can utilize common categories like name, job role, location, and company to help you find your next B2B or B2C contact. After conducting a search, the Free People Search Tool allows you to select from a pre-programmed list of locations such as the US, UK, France, Germany, and more. You can also sort the results by date or by relevance.
The site also offers free x-ray search tools for other sites including Twitter, Dribble, and GitHub. And if you want to know more about booleans, you can spend some time reading through the free boolean search guide to learn how to take your x-ray searches to the next level. The website also has helpful information about other types of sourcing tools and popular options for each one.
Whether you need to find job candidates or new B2B contacts, Lisearcher provides an excellent tool that offers a lot of options other tools don’t. It is unique in the way it functions when you compare it to the other tools on this list.
The LinkedIn x-ray search tool utilizes the Google search engine to scan LinkedIn and provides you with the most relevant results without any unwanted extras. You can use the basic search bars which consist of a keyword bar and a location drop-down. The keyword search is optimized for boolean operators and the location drop-down offers the most countries to choose from out of any tool on this list.
Lisearcher also offers an exciting, advanced option that provides two more keyword search bars. One is specifically for essential keywords you want included in the search results while the second one is specifically for keywords you want excluded. These options are great if you don’t want to spend the time working with boolean operators and want to focus on your keyword choices.
After you complete a search, the site does not give you the actual results but instead provides you with the URL which you can copy into your address bar or you can click on the provided button option to go directly to the Google results page to review what the tool has found for you.
Some Key Takeaways for LinkedIn X-Ray Searches
Now you have the tools and the background information to begin conducting LinkedIn x-ray searches to locate the companies or individuals you want to contact. Let’s review some of the key points we have learned about LinkedIn x-ray searches and why they are so beneficial:
- LinkedIn x-ray searches offer you access to a large pool of potential contacts.
- X-ray searches let you target a specific audience with a high degree of accuracy.
- You can exclude unhelpful search keywords.
- You can require the inclusion of the most relevant and essential keywords.
- You can avoid LinkedIn’s view limits and their system of degrees of connection to generate more contacts.
- X-ray searches save you time and effort by filtering out unwanted search results.
- Free tools make it easy and efficient to find people
We have helped define what a LinkedIn x-ray search is. We have also shown you how to design searches with keywords and boolean operators. Finally, we outlined a few options for free tools you can use on LinkedIn to maximize the productivity of your x-ray searches. Take all the information in this article and begin finding your next audience on LinkedIn.