Do you want to be seen as professional and credible online? Then it is important to have a great profile photo. Here are four tips to help you create that impressive profile photo.

First choose a photograph that resembles you in real life.

The internet can be deceiving. If your profile photo was taken more than five years ago or you look significantly different today then its time to get a new profile picture. If there is a difference between what people perceive and what is real then your credibility will be put into question. Not what you want!

First impressions count. You have less than 7 seconds to create that positive first impression in person. People read your character with a hand shake, eye contact, by noticing your dress style, your energy level and how you carry yourself.

This window of opportunity to assess another person is significantly reduced in the online world. In as little as 3 seconds or less people will form their opinion about you. Not seeing you in person others form an opinion about you only based on your profile picture and the information that accompanies it.

Based merely on your profile picture and accompanying information readers will evaluate and develop a perception as to whether or not can they trust you. They will judge you based on how friendly you seem. Are you approachable? What kind of personality do you have? Is it worth following up with you?

Second your profile picture is not your passport photo!

Who else hates those photos? No smiling allowed! Just a straight face looking ahead at the camera!

For your profile photo you definitely do not want to do that. You want people to like you and trust you when they see your photo. Avoid making a straight face. Smile! A pleasant smile increases engagement as it portrays you as being approachable.

Third. Dress as if you are going to work.

Make sure what you wear shows you in a manner that is appropriate to your profession. Avoid wearing a white coloured top as it will make you look washed out or unnoticed among other profiles in the search results. Colours are important. Soothing and inviting colours include black, blue, or even orange.

Position your face at the center of the frame to draw attention to you and not anything else. Make sure that your face takes up at least 60% of the photo frame.

Fourth, ensure the background is clean and tidy.

This will prevent unnecessary distractions and keep the viewer’s eyes directly focused on your face. The best colour for the background would be white or light blue color because it will give a sense of clarity and professionalism .If you have a good photo of yourself that would be good to use but it has a background there is a great tool called Clipping Magic which can remove it for you.

Simply go to https://clippingmagic.com/ and either upload or drag your image onto the screen.

Next you'll be taken to a screen where you can remove the background by choosing a green pen for the area of the image you want to keep and a red pen for the area that you want to erase. It can be a little tricky to start with but I like to look at the result whilst using the pen. I find it easier to be more accurate that way.

In order to download and remove the watermark from your image you'll need to subscribe but the lowest level currently, which is enough images for most people. is only $3.99 per month.

Once you have your profile picture don't forget to be consistent and use it in all your marketing. Be seen as the credible professional that you are.

I’m author, publisher, and entrepreneur Anne Elizabeth Perez and I am here to serve you with my experience, knowledge, and ideas. Discover how to improve your visibility on the web. To find out more about how to use LinkedIn to promote your business visit Linked Power Relationships.