LinkedIn: Premium vs. Free

I have had a LinkedIn account for a little over two years and have only used the basic and free version of LinkedIn. With the countdown of 44 days until graduation and still no job, I thought it could be worthwhile to try out the premium account. LinkedIn has broken down its premium accounts into four different categories:

Business- for general business users

Job Seeker- for job seekers

Sales Professional- for sales professionals

Recruiter- for enterprise and individual recruiters

Within those categories, you can select a basic, something in the middle, or a plus version. I chose the job seeker version that is in between basic and plus. Below, is a list of prices for each version of the job seeker premium account.


After careful calculation and evaluation, I found that the premium job seeker version of LinkedIn is not worth it.

It isn’t that this version doesn’t have valuable tools or neat features, because it definitely does. However, I feel that in comparison to what a user already receives with the free account that $29.95 is not justified with the few whistles and bells that are added.

Here is a complete list of what tools come with the job seeker premium account.

  1. 3 InMail messages to recruiters on LinkedIn with a guaranteed response.
  • In theory this sounds awesome, but typically the responses are generic. Although LinkedIn does guarantee 3 responses a month that does not mean you are receiving the recruiter’s attention or that they will be interested in you.
  1. Receive a full list of who has viewed your profile.
  • I feel that this feature alone would be worth the $29.95, except that you already receive a pretty detailed list of who is viewing your profile on the basic version. The basic version does not always give a name, but it will tell you where that professional is employed.
  1. Featured Applicant
  • This feature moves your name to the top of the recruiter’s list (along with other premium version applicants) after applying for a job through LinkedIn. This would be better if you applied for all jobs directly through LinkedIn. Most job applications on LinkedIn lead you to another form of recruiting software or the company’s website.
  1. Premium Badge
  • This feature just puts a star next to your name so that everyone is aware that you are paying for that star.
  1. Salary Data
  1. Job Seeker Group and Webinar
  • This feature is just the links to the occasional newsletter and video with the dos and don’ts of interviewing. It’s nothing you can’t Google!

    The features that premium accounts offer are nice features to a job seeker, but not worth the monthly bill of $29.95. Especially as college student/new grad, the money could be better spent on something else that would get you more attention.


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